World News in Brief: July 7

Tuesday, 2020-07-07 15:55:58
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Australia’s second most populous state of Victoria will reimpose stay-at-home restrictions in metropolitan Melbourne and one regional area of the state after a record daily rise in coronavirus infections.
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Australia has recorded almost 200 new cases of coronavirus in a single day. Authorities in Victoria on Tuesday (July 7) announced that there had been 191 confirmed new cases of COVID-19 in the state since Monday (July 6). As of Tuesday afternoon, the total number of cases in Australia is at 8755, of which 839 are active. The death toll remains at 106.

* Chinese health authority said Tuesday that it received reports of eight new confirmed COVID-19 cases on the Chinese mainland Monday, of which all were imported. No deaths related to the disease were reported Monday. As of Monday, the overall confirmed cases on the mainland had reached 83,565, including 403 patients who were still being treated, with seven in severe conditions. Altogether 78,528 people had been discharged after recovery, and 4,634 had died of the disease on the mainland, the commission said.

* The number of COVID-19 cases in the United States topped 2.9 million on Monday, reaching 2,910,023 as of 2:34 p.m. (1834 GMT), according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University. Meanwhile, the national death toll reached 130,090, according to the CSSE. The state of New York reported the most cases and the highest death toll in the country, standing at 397,649 and 32,219, respectively. Other states with over 100,000 cases include California, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Arizona, the CSSE data showed.

* Brazil's COVID-19 death toll surpassed 65,000 on Monday after 620 more patients died in the previous 24 hours, bringing the total to 65,487, the Ministry of Health said. The total number of people who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus since the start of the outbreak rose to 1,623,284, following a daily surge of 20,229 cases. Some 927,292 patients have recovered from the disease, the ministry said.

* The coronavirus epidemic in Mexico could last until next April, with infections expected to rise during the October flu season and through winter, Mexico's Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell told local media on Monday. The Latin American country has registered 261,750 confirmed cases in total, with 31,119 overall deaths, putting it in fifth place worldwide in terms of fatalities from COVID-19, according to the latest Johns Hopkins University tally.

* The total number of COVID-19 cases surpassed 700,000-mark in India on Tuesday, reaching 719,665, as the death toll rose to 20,160, said the latest data released by the federal health ministry. The ministry said 467 new deaths due to COVID-19, besides 22,252 positive cases, were reported during the past 24 hours across the country, taking the number of deaths to 20,160 and total cases to 719,665.

* The Tokyo metropolitan government on Tuesday confirmed 106 new daily COVID-19 infections in Tokyo, with the number of new cases topping 100 for the sixth straight day in the Japanese capital. Tokyo's cumulative total of COVID-19 cases now stand at 6,973, the highest among Japan's 47 prefectures and accounting for roughly one-third of the nation's total tally, which surpassed the 20,000-mark Tuesday, not including cases connected to a cruise ship that was quarantined in Yokohama near Tokyo.

* Republic of Korea's confirmed COVID-19 cases rose fast in recent weeks on the spread of the mutant virus that brought about a series of small cluster infections across the country. The country reported 44 more cases of the COVID-19 as of midnight Tuesday compared to 24 hours ago, raising the total number of infections to 13,181, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said. Of the new cases, 24 were imported from overseas, lifting the combined figure to 1,714 while gaining in double figures for 12 straight days.

* Singapore's Ministry of Health (MOH) reported 183 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, bringing the total confirmed cases in the country to 44,983. Of the new cases, three are imported cases, 23 are community cases and the rest are linked with the dormitories of foreign workers.

* An earthquake with a magnitude of 5.1 jolted 278 km WSW of Labuan, Indonesia at 06:16:27 GMT on Tuesday, the US Geological Survey said. The epicenter, with a depth of 10.0 km, was initially determined to be at 7.1873 degrees south latitude and 103.4453 degrees east longitude.

* China's national observatory on Tuesday renewed its yellow alert for rainstorms as incessant downpours continue to wreak havoc across vast stretches of the country. From Tuesday morning to Wednesday morning, heavy rain and rainstorms are expected in the regions including Anhui, Zhejiang, Hubei, Hunan, Chongqing, Guizhou, Sichuan, Yunnan and Heilongjiang, the National Meteorological Center said. China on July 4 upgraded its emergency response for flood control from level IV to level III amid the incessant downpours.

* Over 100,000 people have been affected by an ongoing drought in parts of Sri Lanka due to the lack of monsoonal rains, Sri Lankan Disaster Management Center said in its latest situation update here Monday. According to the report, 103,219 persons in 31,580 families had been affected by the drought in Kurunegala and Polonnaruwa in the north-central province, Batticaloa and Trincomalee in the East, Hambantota in the south and Mullaitivu in the north.

* Malaysia's central bank, Bank Negara, said Tuesday that its international reserves stood at US$103.4 billion as of June 30. The central bank said in a statement that the reserves position is sufficient to finance 8.3 months of retained imports and is 1.1 times total short-term external debt.

* Turkey on Monday vowed to retaliate the European Union if the bloc decides to impose new sanctions on Turkey due to disagreement over the Eastern Mediterranean. France has called for an EU meeting to discuss further sanctions on Turkey due to the dispute in the Eastern Mediterranean and Libya.

* The prime ministers of Portugal and Spain met in Lisbon on Monday and called on the European Union (EU) member states to reach a deal on the bloc's EUR750-billion (USD840 billion) recovery plan by the end of July. At a joint press conference after their meeting, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa and his visiting Spanish counterpart Pedro Sanchez said that "July must be the month of the European agreement" for the release of the EU's recovery fund in response to the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

* Schools across Sri Lanka were partially re-opened on Monday after being shut for nearly three months, as the spread of COVID-19 has been put under control in the island country, local media reported Tuesday. According to the Education Ministry, schools were re-opened for grades 13, 11 and 5, leading to nearly 800,000 students returning back to school across the country.

* New Zealand reported two new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, with the number of active cases in the country remaining at 22, all in managed isolation or quarantine facilities, according to the Ministry of Health. The country has confirmed 1,186 cases, which is the number reported to the World Health Organization, according to the ministry.

* Chile on Monday reported an accumulated 298,557 cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infection since the outbreak began. The COVID-19 death toll climbed to 6,384 after 76 more patients died from the disease in the previous 24-hour period, according to the Ministry of Health.

* Restrictions on international travelers to Ireland will remain in place until at least July 20, reported Irish national radio and television broadcaster RTE on Monday.

* Greece has suspended the entrance of Serbian nationals to Greece from Monday till July 15 due to an increase in COVID-19 cases in Serbia, and in parallel decided to allow the resumption of direct flights from the United Kingdom to all Greek airports from July 15, the government announced. Greece has now registered 3,562 confirmed novel coronavirus cases since the outbreak began in the country on Feb. 26.

* While the growth of new COVID-19 cases and deaths is slowing down recently in Sweden, the government has ordered public agencies and local authorities to prepare for a potential second wave of the pandemic in autumn. As of Monday afternoon, Sweden had reported a total of 73,061 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with 5,433 deaths.

* Egypt recorded on Monday 969 COVID-19 cases, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 76,222, the health ministry said. It is the first time that Egypt registers fewer than 1,000 daily new COVID-19 cases since May 28. In a statement, Khaled Megahed, spokesman for the health ministry, said 79 more patients died from the disease, taking the death toll in the country to 3,422.

* The two Palestinian rival groups, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party and Islamic Hamas movement, agreed on Monday to resume meetings to end the internal division. Ahmad Helles, a member of Fatah's Central Committee, and Husam Badran, a member of Hamas politburo, made this announcement in a joint interview aired on the state-run Palestine television.

* Israel's Ministry of Health reported 791 new coronavirus cases on Monday, bringing the total number of infections to 30,749. According to the ministry, the death toll from the virus rose from 331 to 334, while the number of patients in serious condition increased from 86 to 88, out of 349 patients currently hospitalized. The total recoveries in Israel reached 18,056 after 106 more ones were added, while the number of active cases reached a record 12,359.

* Oman reported on Monday 1,557 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total number in the country to 47,735. Among the new cases were 500 non-Omanis, according to a health ministry statement. Meanwhile, five new fatalities were reported, raising the death toll to 218, while 1,229 more patients recovered, bringing the total recovered cases to 29,146, the statement said.

* Algerian Health Minister Abderrahman Benbouzid said Monday that a renewal of nationwide lockdown "is not on the agenda right now," but the government will choose "a targeted lockdown" in regions with a significant increase in coronavirus cases. As of Monday, Algeria had 16,404 confirmed cases with 959 deaths.

* The National Center for Disease Control of Libya on Tuesday reported 71 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the national count to 1,117. Meanwhile, the center has reported 269 recoveries and 34 deaths across the country so far.

Xinhua, Reuters