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Coronavirus - 26th July


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:Covid-19: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 09:59

Summary for Sunday, 26th July

  • Travellers arriving in the UK from Spain must now quarantine for 14 days, under new coronavirus travel rules
  • The measures follow a spike in infections in Spain, with more than 900 new cases reported on Friday
  • Spain is taking new measures to cut a spike in cases, amid fears of a more widespread "second wave"
  • France and Germany have also seen a rise in cases, as nations grapple between staving off fresh outbreaks and reopening economies
  • North Korea has reported what it describes as its first suspected case - a defector who returned from South Korea last week
  • There have been more than 16 million cases globally and nearly 645,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University

Welcome back. We are resuming our rolling coverage of the coronavirus pandemic but first here is a quick summary of the latest developments to kick us off.

  • British holidaymakers have been reacting to new rules requiring travellers from Spain to self-isolate for 14 days . The move is a potential setback for the Spanish tourism industry as UK visitors make up a quarter of all foreign tourists there
  • The new measures follow a surge in Covid-19 cases, which have prompted fears of a second wave of infections in Spain. France and Germany have also reported a rise in new infections
  • North Korea says a defector who returned from South Korea last week is suspected of bringing the country's first Covid-19 infection . The North has previously said it does not have a single coronavirus case, a claim which experts say is unlikely
  • The mayor of Rio de Janeiro has cancelled the city's famous New Year's Eve celebration because of the pandemic. Marcelo Crivella said he was considering alternative ways of welcoming 2021. Brazil is one of the world's worst-affected countries with more than 2.3 million infections and 86,000 deaths
  • Globally the number of cases has now passed 16 million and there have been nearly 645,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University

Government handling of Spain quarantine rules 'frankly shambolic' - Labour

Travellers arriving in the UK from Spain must now quarantine for 14 days under new coronavirus travel rules.
They were announced on Saturday after a rise in infections in Spain, with more than 900 new cases reported on Friday.
Labour’s shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said he understands why the government made the decision, but the handling and communication of it was “frankly shambolic”.
He urged the government to provide clarity for “confused and distressed” holidaymakers, who don't know whether their employers will allow them to quarantine at home for two weeks.
He told Sky News’ Sophy Ridge: "The government is just saying, 'We hope that employers co-operate'. Well, to be frank, I hope I win the lottery on Saturday but that doesn't mean it is going to happen."
He called on the government to provide "clarity" for holidaymakers and said it needed to be backed up by financial support, so that people who need to self-isolate can "do the right thing" to protect themselves and others.

What are the UK travel quarantine rules for Spain?

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People already in Spain can stay for the rest of their holiday, the government says, but from today they will have to self-isolate for two weeks upon their return.
The rules apply to travellers arriving from anywhere in Spain, including the Canary and Balearic Islands. The UK government is now advising "against all but essential travel to mainland Spain".
All travellers arriving into England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are affected by the new guidelines.
Read more on the new measures here

Spain insists outbreaks are under control

The Spanish foreign ministry has responded to the latest UK measures by saying that Spain is safe for visitors and that new coronavirus outbreaks are isolated and under control.
However, although the country ended its state of emergency barely a month ago, cities including Barcelona, Zaragoza and the capital Madrid have seen a surge in new infections.
Health officials reported more than 900 new cases of the virus on Friday and the government has warned that a second wave of infections could be imminent.
In response, Catalonia is closing all nightclubs and late-night bars in the region for the next two weeks.
The BBC's Guy Hedgecoe in Madrid says contagion among young people is a particular worry, as they have been gathering in large numbers in cities at night.
Norway has also said it will start quarantining people arriving from Spain, and France has warned its citizens not to travel to Catalonia. Belgium has banned travel to Huesca and Lleida, with recommendations against travel to a number of other areas in Spain.

Raab: We had to take 'swift, decisive action' on Spain quarantine rules

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the government could not apologise for the decision to re-introduce quarantine measures on travellers arriving in the UK from Spain at short notice.
He told Sky News' Sophy Ridge On Sunday programme: "The cases in Spain, the data came we got was on the Friday, showed a big jump right across mainland Spain, that was then assessed yesterday afternoon and we took the decision as swiftly as we could.
"And we can't make apologies for doing so."
He said No 10 must be able to take "swift, decisive action", especially in relation to localised outbreaks or those in particular countries, otherwise "we risk re-infection into the UK, potentially a second wave [of the virus] and then another lockdown".
He said he understood it is "disruptive" for holidaymakers in Spain or those who wanted to travel there, but reiterated his stance that the government must be able to take quick decisions.
Asked why No 10 could not have given holidaymakers an earlier warning, he said ministers had to be able to "gauge the data in real time".
He added: "If we suddenly say, 'we're not quite sure' and give vague advice, it would create more uncertainty."
He said it would have been "far worse to either muddy the waters or to hold back and delay from taking the measures when we need to take them".

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 10:31

Transport Secretary caught up in his department's Spain rule change

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Among the holidaymakers whose travel plans have been disrupted today is Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, who has been caught up in his own department's rule change while on holiday there .
Mr Shapps had travelled to Spain with his family on Saturday morning for a summer break, but just hours later, the Department for Transport confirmed the new quarantine rules due to a spike in cases in the country.
A DfT spokesman said Mr Shapps would continue with his holiday as planned. He will then isolate upon his return, in line with the new rules.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said he spoke to Mr Shapps after he had arrived in Spain on Saturday, and that his colleague "recognised we had to take the measures".
Mr Raab told Sky's Sophy Ridge on Sunday the transport secretary "empathised with the many other people" who were experiencing the same thing, adding: "I think it shows you the risk for everyone... and shows you we have got to take swift measures."

Raab: 'I'm going to be staying at home this summer'

Mr Raab said there is no guarantee other countries will not be removed from the government's "safe list" of countries exempt from the 14 day quarantine rules .
He told Sophy Ridge on Sunday: "As we've found with Spain, we can't give a guarantee.
"All we can say is we've got this Joint Biosecurity Centre, we monitor the risk in real time, we take decisive swift action and so there is an element of uncertainty this summer if people go abroad."
Mr Raab said that wasn't going to tell the public "what they should and shouldn't do" but that they should "follow the advice", adding: "I'm going to be staying at home this summer"

Australia suffers deadliest day yet

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Face masks are mandatory in Melbourne

Australia has experienced its deadliest day of the pandemic so far, with 10 deaths reported on Sunday and a rising number of infections.
In the state of Victoria - the epicentre of the current outbreak - 459 new cases were reported on Sunday, up from 357 on Saturday. About a dozen more were recorded elsewhere in the country.
The national death toll now stands at 155 with about 14,000 cases.
In a bid to curb the latest spike in infections, a lockdown has been imposed on about five million people in greater Melbourne for the past two weeks. The wearing of face masks is mandatory in the city.
Police have also been guarding Victoria's state borders to stop all but essential travel and enforcing quarantine orders.

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 10:38

N Korea seals off border city amid virus fears

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Kaesong lies along the demilitarised border with South Korea

North Korea says it has locked down the city of Kaesong near the border with South Korea over fears that a defector who returned to the North last week was infected with the coronavirus.
The reclusive country's leader, Kim Jong-un, has declared an emergency and convened an emergency meeting of his politburo. "The vicious virus could be said to have entered the country," he was quoted as saying by the KCNA state news agency.
If confirmed, it would be the first official Covid-19 infection in North Korea. The secretive state has previously claimed to be free of the virus, although analysts cast doubt on the claim - saying the coronavirus was likely to have already entered from neighbouring China.
State media said the defector had left for the South three years ago but returned across the border to Kaesong last week. South Korea says there is a strong possibility that a crossing was made and that it is investigating.

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 11:35

TUI cancels all holidays to mainland Spain

Package holiday company TUI has cancelled all its holidays to mainland Spain until 9 August following the change in the UK's quarantine rules for arrivals from Spain.
The firm said in a statement: “Due to travel advice change against all but essential travel to mainland Spain, TUI UK have taken the decision to cancel all holidays to mainland Spain up to and including Sunday 9 August."
It said holidaymakers wishing "to travel to the Balearic Islands and Canary Islands will be able to travel as planned from Monday 27th July.
“Customers due to travel to all areas of Spain between 27th July and Sunday 9th August will be able to cancel or amend holidays and will be able to receive a full refund or the option to rebook their holiday with a booking incentive.
"Customers with holidays from 10th August will be updated on Friday 31st July."
TUI added that all customers currently in Spain can continue to enjoy their holiday and will be able to return on their planned flight home.
The firm added that regional travel corridors should be considered and urged ministers to "work closely" with the travel industry "as this level of uncertainty and confusion is damaging for business and disappointing for those looking forward to a well-deserved break".

'Everyone's now panicking' - UK holidaymaker

Holidaymakers travelling from Madrid back to the UK have told of their anguish at new rules requiring travellers arriving back from Spain to isolate for two weeks .

'We've lost our holiday'

UK holidaymakers have been responding to the news that travellers arriving from Spain will now have to quarantine for 14 days, with many expressing frustration at the new rules.
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Lois Stothard, from South Yorkshire, says she booked a holiday to Seville as a surprise for her boyfriend's 30th birthday - due to fly out on Sunday morning - but now feels that she cannot travel.
"I'm a key worker - I'm a teacher - and my boyfriend has work commitments so we cannot quarantine for 14 days when we return," she said.
"We can't get any money back and to change the company want double what I've already paid in fees.
"I'm very disappointed and upset as we're packed and ready to go."
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Malcolm Eggar and his family were due to be flying to Alicante this morning, but he said they have received no information about whether their flights will go ahead.
He told BBC Breakfast: “We were thinking the flight was going to be cancelled. [There has been] no information whatsoever on what we can do. At the moment, we’re in limbo.”
Malcolm, who lives in Solihull, said the situation is very “frustrating and upsetting”, particularly as the holiday would have been the first time his wife – a frontline NHS worker – had seen her parents - who live in Spain - this year.
“We’ve just come out of lockdown, and my wife has absolutely been through it over the past few months, so we needed this break.”

The dilemma at the heart of Spain travel rule change

Helen Catt - Political correspondent
You know things have happened fast when even the man who's in charge of the policy has been caught out.
While it's pretty certain that Grant Shapps's boss isn't going to mind him taking another 14 days off, the sudden nature of this "Spanish re-imposition" is going to cause big problems for many holidaymakers when they head home.
It highlights the dilemma at the heart of this policy: responding quickly to changes in the infection rate in other countries is vital to stopping the spread of the virus but that makes it unpredictable for would-be travellers.
So the big question for the UK government is: will the necessary flexibility of opening up and closing down "travel corridors" end up undermining the confidence they were supposed to create?
And if it does, how does the government respond to an industry that's already been hit hard?

France and German battle to stem rising infections

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France began easing its lockdown in May

With Spain in the spotlight over its rising numbers of coronavirus cases, France and Germany are also struggling to keep infections in check.
In France, the number of new daily infections rose above 1,000 for a second day running on Saturday bringing the level back to where it was when lockdown was eased in May. France has been one of Europe's worst-affected countries with more than 217,000 cases and about 30,000 deaths.
On Friday, Prime Minister Jean Castex announced on-the-spot testing for travellers arriving from 16 high-risk nations but said he wanted to avoid a return to a full lockdown to protect the economy. France has also advised its citizens not to travel to Spain's north-eastern region of Catalonia.
In Germany, the number of new cases rose sharply on Friday to 815, the biggest tally since mid-May, and remained high on Saturday with 781 new cases.
Health Minister Jens Spahn told Deutschlandfunk radio that the government might introduce compulsory testing for travellers arriving from high-risk destinations such as the US, Brazil and Turkey.

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 11:44

Hurricane Hanna batters southern Texas
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A satellite image shows Hurricane Hanna approaching the Texan coast

Hurricane Hanna has made landfall in southern Texas, with US officials warning of life-threatening storm surge, strong winds and heavy rains.
Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for 32 counties, saying the coronavirus outbreak would complicate the work of the emergencies services.
Hanna made landfall on Padre Island on Saturday, and is now battering the area between Corpus Christi and Brownsville.
With winds up to 90mph (145km/h), the storm was tearing roofs off homes.
Hanna was a Category One hurricane, the lowest level on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale.
"Any hurricane is an enormous challenge," Gov Abbott said on Saturday. "This challenge is complicated and made even more severe, seeing that it is sweeping through an area that is the most challenged area in the state for Covid-19."
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) warned that a "life-threatening storm surge will continue along portions of the Texas coast from Port Mansfield to Sargent".
It urged local residents to follow advice given by the emergencies services.
The storm is expected to mostly skirt the Houston region, the Houston Chronicle reports.
AT 22:00 local time on Saturday (03:00 GMT Sunday), "maximum sustained winds were near 75mph, the NHC said.
It added that "rapid weakening is expected as Hanna moves farther inland" over Texas and into north-eastern Mexico on Sunday.
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Separately, Hurricane Douglas - with maximum winds of up to 90mph - was approaching Hawaii in the Pacific, the NHC said, warning of damaging winds, flooding rainfall and dangerously high surf.
US President Donald Trump tweeted that his administration was closely monitoring the storms. "We continue to closely co-ordinate closely with both states," he said.
Hanna hits Texas as the southern state is struggling to contain the coronavirus outbreak.
More than 380,000 infection cases have so far been confirmed, with nearly 5,000 deaths.
Read more here

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 18:58

Iran reports more than 2,000 new cases

Iran confirmed another 2,333 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, continuing a surge in infections that began in mid-May.
The health ministry also reported another 216 deaths over the past 24 hours, bringing the toll to 15,700.
Iran began relaxing lockdown measures in April following a drop in the number of infections. It reopened mosques, shopping centres and public parks and allowed travel to resume between provinces.
The initial outbreak was concentrated in Qom and the capital, Tehran, but the latest flare-up is in the south-west, notably in Khuzestan province bordering Iraq.
President Hassan Rouhani has told Iranians they must wear masks on public transport and in crowded areas.
Meanwhile, authorities in Tehran have re-imposed restrictions on some businesses and public gatherings.

British tourists 'in a difficult position'

Which magazine travel editor Rory Boland said reimposing quarantine rules on British tourists travelling to Spain will leave many people in a difficult position with their employers.
"If you have an employer that says you'll lose your job if you don't come in, the government says you've got to quarantine, what do you do?"
Mr Boland told the BBC's News Channel it was "almost certain" that many holidaymakers who jetted off to Spain just as schools broke for up for the summer holidays, "would not have travelled if they had known they'd be required to quarantine when they return".
He said it was "extraordinary" that No 10 did not make the decision "48 hours ago [or] 24 hours ago" after Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said ministers received virus data from Spain on Friday.
"It is impossible for holidaymakers to have any confidence in booking holidays if the government is going to announce new quarantine measures at 20:00 BST on a Saturday that come in at midnight - that's four hours notice."

What do I really, really need to know if I'm in Spain or have plans to travel there?

Holidaymakers face last-minute disruption to their plans after the government introduced new rules requiring travellers arriving in the UK from Spain to self-isolate for two weeks.
The measures will apply to those returning from mainland Spain, the Canary Islands (Tenerife, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, La Palma, La Gomera, El Hierro and La Graciosa) and the Balearic Islands, such as Majorca and Ibiza.
But what does it mean in practice for travellers?

  • The new rules came into force on Sunday and apply to people returning to all four nations of the UK - England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
  • People currently on holiday in Spain have been told to follow local rules, return home as normal, and check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's (FCO) advice pages.The FCO is not advising those already in Spain to leave. Abta - the UK's travel trade association - has advised customers in Spain to return from their holidays as normal
  • Holiday operator Tui has cancelled all holidays to Spain booked with them until 9 August
  • For people who have booked with other firms, the FCO is advising against all but essential travel to mainland Spain. Abta has advised customers due to travel to the country imminently to contact their travel provider
  • The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has said it is "likely" that travel insurance will remain in place for holidaymakers already in Spain until they return home. However, those attempting to travel to countries against FCO advice would invalidate their travel insurance
  • Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said no worker following quarantine guidance should be penalised by employers - including being forced onto sick pay

Scottish government: Quarantine 'disappointing but necessary'

The change in rules for travellers returning from Spain is also in place north of the border.
Scotland only lifted the 14-day quarantine rule last week for people returning from the country, but reimposed it on Saturday in line with the rest of the UK.
The Scottish government's justice secretary, Humza Yousaf, said the move would be "disappointing" for holidaymakers, but it was necessary to reduce the risk of the spread of the virus.
He says coronavirus is "still active and it is still deadly".
Read more on the situation in Scotland here .

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 19:05

Tracking the global outbreak

There have now been more than 16 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus in 188 countries. More than 640,000 people have lost their lives.
Europe and North America saw the first major outbreaks in April but as they began to ease, Latin America and Asia started seeing an increase.
North America has seen a resurgence of infections in recent weeks, mostly driven by new outbreaks in the US.
View more charts tracking the global pandemic in the latest guide from the BBC News Visual and Data Journalism Team .

Four locally-transmitted cases in Vietnam this weekend

We reported yesterday that Vietnam had confirmed its first locally-transmitted case of coronavirus in 100 days - a 57-year-old grandfather in the central city of Danang.
Now another three locally-transmitted cases have been confirmed, and officials in the country have reintroduced social distancing measures in the city in response.
The three new cases included a 17-year-old boy in Quang Ngai province, and a 71-year-old woman in Danang.
Vietnam, a single-party communist state, has been praised globally for its swift and effective response to the coronavirus outbreak. It was one of the earliest countries to lock down and enforce restrictions.
Its total number of cases is now 420 - one of the lowest in the world - and its death toll is zero.

Foreign minister: Spain is a 'safe country for tourists'

The Spanish foreign minister insists Spain is a "safe country for tourists" after the UK's decision to make travellers quarantine for 14 days after returning from the holiday destination.
Arancha Gonzalez Laya tells a news conference Spain is seeing outbreaks "like in any other European country" but they are "perfectly controlled".
She also says the outbreaks are focused in three areas - Barcelona, Lleida and Zaragoza - and all of them are "perfectly traced".
The foreign minister adds: "Half of those that are Covid positive in Spain are asymptomatic, which gives a very clear indication of the huge efforts that all the regions in Spain are undertaking to test its citizens for covid.
"And once they are identified they are being subject to very strict social distancing measures."

German farm hit by virus outbreak

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Bavaria was among Germany's hardest hit regions at the start of the pandemic

About 500 workers at a large farm in the German state of Bavaria have been placed under quarantine after 174 farmhands tested positive for coronovirus.
Authorities screened the workforce at Mamming, north-east of Munich, after seven harvest workers fell ill with Covid-19.
"To avoid further spread, we unfortunately have to take this step to protect the population," said district administrator Werner Bumeder.
Politicians appealed to the local community to remain calm, saying the outbreak was not believed to have spread outside the farm. A security team is monitoring the quarantine.
Germany has seen several localised outbreaks in recent months. In June, more than 1,500 workers tested positive at a meatpacking plant in North Rhine-Westphalia.

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 19:10

Weighing up how to respond to spikes in tourist destinations

David Shukman - Science editor, BBC News
For months now, health experts have warned we will see spikes at a regional and local level as lockdowns are eased.
So while the national picture in Spain does show a slight uptick in the number of cases, that hides some big differences across the country.
In the past fortnight, Catalonia saw more than 8,500 new infections while the Balearic Islands had just 92.
One response is to increase the testing of people arriving back home – it’s voluntary at German airports right now but may become mandatory as it is in France for arrivals from high-risk countries like the US and Brazil.
Might that also happen in the UK?
It wouldn’t be worth it, according to Baroness Dido Harding, head of the NHS Test and Trace scheme.
She says a negative result would not guarantee that someone wouldn’t develop symptoms later.
Another approach, used by the Netherlands, is to single out people coming from specific areas with high levels of infections – such as a few named regions in Spain and the UK city of Leicester – and urge them to self-isolate.
As the virus continues to circulate, further alarms – and changes in policy - are inevitable.

How does Spain compare to other parts of Europe?

The rate of infection in Spain per 100,000 people is currently at 39.4, according to figures from the EU's European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control .
Spain is now comparable with Sweden and Portugal, although rates in those countries are falling while Spain's is on the rise.
Romania (59.7) and Bulgaria (44.8) are considerably higher than Spain. Luxembourg is far higher (219.4), although the number there may be skewed by its small population. The UK's rate is 14.6.
Fresh outbreaks in Spain - as in other countries seeing a spike in infections - seem to be restricted to a few regions, including Catalonia, where Barcelona is located, and Aragon.
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Is Spain seeing a second wave?

Spain has seen a surge in new coronavirus cases, which has led the UK government to order a 14-day quarantine period on anyone arriving from the country .
As Spain takes new measures to cut the rise in infections - including the Catalan government temporarily closing nightlife in the region - there are fears of a more widespread second wave of cases.
But is it really a second wave? Prof Paul Hunter, a Covid-19 expert at Norwich Medical School, says there is "no proper scientific definition" of a second wave.
He believes for a second wave to occur, the virus would have had to have gone away completely, before returning again.
Although Spain has successfully suppressed the virus from its peak, it has never managed to reduce the average number of new cases per day below a seven-day average of 254.
Italy managed to get new cases per day down to between 10 and 20 over a seven-day average.
Prof Hunter says you would need to get that average down close to 100 before you could claim the virus was "markedly under control".
He adds: "In Spain, [the virus] has never gone away, and if I was writing about it [the current situation] I would call it a resurgence."

Spain wants popular islands to be removed from UK quarantine list

Earlier, we brought you some comments by the Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha González Laya about the UK quarantine on travellers returning from Spain.
She also said the government was focusing on convincing the UK authorities to exclude the Canary and Balearic Islands from the measure, due to the low incidence of coronavirus there.
Those islands include the popular destinations of Mallorca, Ibiza and Tenerife.
"For two reasons: number one, these are islands, very safe territories, number two, their epidemiological data is extremely positive, well below epidemiological data in the UK," she said.
Tourism is a major contributor to the Spanish economy and there are far more visitors from the UK than from any other country.

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 19:18

Former Tanzanian president 'didn't die of Covid-19'

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Relatives of the late former Tanzanian president Benjamin Mkapa have denied rumours that he died of coronavirus, saying that he had a heart attack while suffering from malaria.
Mkapa's death at the age of 81 was announced on Friday, but officials gave no cause of death. He was the country's third president, ruling from 1995 to 2005.
Tanzania has stopped publishing its Covid-19 statistics, and current leader John Magufuli has been accused of covering up the scale of the outbreak.
There have been just over 521 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country - far fewer than in neighbouring nations.

UK records 747 virus cases in 24 hours

Another 747 coronavirus cases have been recorded in the UK over the past 24 hours, according to the latest figures from the government.

UK approaches 299,426 positive cases

The latest figure for coronavirus cases in the UK - 747 in the past 24 hours - brings the UK's total number of people testing positive for the virus to 299,426.
The number includes both pillar one - tests in hospitals and Public Health England laboratories - and pillar two - wider population testing - scenarios.
A total of 225,481 tests were made available in the past 24 hours, making the figure for tests made available since the outbreak reach 14,794,369.
However, only 142,954 of those tests were processed in the same period, making the total number of tests processed overall 10,975,936.

Florida now 'second worst' virus state

Florida has registered another 9,300 new confirmed cases of coronavirus in 24 hours, and has now overtaken New York to become the second-worst-hit state in the US.
In recent weeks, Florida has recorded an average of more than 10,000 new cases a day. With a total of 423,855 infections, the sunshine state is now only behind California, which is leading the country with 448,497 confirmed cases.
But New York - which was the epicentre at the start of the outbreak - still has the highest overall death toll, with more than 32,000 recorded deaths.
Despite the surge in Florida, the state's governor Ron DeSantis has repeatedly said he won't mandate mask-wearing, and that schools must reopen in August as scheduled.

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:Covid-19: Re: Coronavirus - 26th July

Post by Kitkat on Sun Jul 26 2020, 19:27

Spain quarantine reaction: 'We're still going'

More reaction now from UK holidaymakers in Spain who will now have to quarantine for 14 days on their return.
Dan Chadderton, 49, from Sale, Cheshire, flew from Manchester to Spain on Saturday morning with his wife Gabby, 51, and daughters Anna, 16, and Eliza, 11.
He and his family have been "looking at the news all the time" from their holiday spot south of Alicante, after colleagues told him about the rule change on Saturday evening.
He adds it's a stress he could have done without.
"I'm particularly upset as I work for a travel company - March, April and May were hell - was never furloughed, and really needed this break."

But Rachael Gillespie, 48, of Llandough, Penarth, still intends to travel to Quesada, Murcia, on Monday morning with her partner and two daughters.
"I'm not ignoring the potential risk but we're staying in a family villa, have a family car and both my partner and I are fortunate to be able to work from home when we return," she says.
"I know there's a question over insurance and some people think I'm mad, but when you see the crowds in UK destinations like north Wales or the Lake District, where exactly is the safest place to holiday right now?"
Read more from other holidaymakers affected by the move - including one who found out about the rule changes three minutes after landing in Spain.

Spain travel rules: What are my rights?

The government's decision to impose a 14-day quarantine on travellers arriving in the UK from Spain has caused a great deal of "uncertainty and confusion", as one holiday firm has put it.
Here are some of the questions it raises:

  • Why is the Foreign Office advice different from that of the Department of Transport?
  • What about if I'm not there but plan to go? Can I get a refund?
  • What are the quarantine rules for when I return?
  • What are my rights with my employer if I have to self-isolate?

Our business reporter has some of the answers.

We're pausing this page for now...

Thank you for joining our live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic today, particularly if you're reading this from a country or city in lockdown.
We're pausing this page until tomorrow morning - but before we go, here's a summary of today's main developments:

  • People travelling back to the UK from Spain must now go into quarantine for 14 days. In response to criticism, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the government "could not apologise" for the decision
  • The measures come after a surge in infections in parts of Spain, with more than 900 new cases reported in the country on Friday
  • Meanwhile the UK recorded 747 new cases of the virus and 14 deaths in the last 24 hours. However in Scotland, the daily death toll was zero for the tenth day in a row
  • About 500 workers at a German farm have been placed in quarantine after 174 people tested positive for the virus
  • Iran confirmed another 2,333 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, continuing a surge in infections that began in mid-May - weeks after the country began relaxing lockdown measures. Another 216 people in the country have died in the last 24 hours
  • In the US, Florida has now overtaken New York with the second-highest overall number of cases, after recording 9,300 cases in 24 hours. California still has the highest number of cases, while New York - the epicentre at the start of the outbreak - still has the highest death toll
  • This weekend, Vietnam confirmed its first locally-transmitted cases in 100 days. In response, the government is reinstating social distancing measures. The single-party communist state has been praised for its swift and effective response to the pandemic, which has kept its death toll at zero
  • North Korea has locked down the city of Kaesong near the South Korean border over fears that a defector who returned last week was infected with coronavirus. If confirmed, this would be the first official Covid-19 infection in North Korea

    Current date/time is Sun Oct 25 2020, 08:57