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Coronavirus - 27th October

Kitkat
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 09:18

Summary for Tuesday, 27th October

Key developments from the last few hours:

  • Stock markets have opened sharply down in Asia Pacific on Tuesday, taking their cue from the US and Europe where shares fell on Monday amid concerns that the second wave of coronavirus is not being contained. In Sydney the ASX200 has fallen 1.2% and the Dow Jones New Zealand is down 1.3%. Markets in Asia are set to follow suit.
  • Mainland China reported 16 new confirmed Covid-19 cases on 26 October, down from 20 a day earlier, the country’s health authorities said on Tuesday. The number of new asymptomatic cases also fell to 50, from 161 reported a day earlier amid a fresh wave of symptomless infections being reported in the northwestern Xinjiang region.
  • Victoria, Australia recorded zero new cases for second time.
  • With the US Election Day just over a week away, average deaths per day across the country are up 10% over the past two weeks, from 721 to nearly 794 as of Sunday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Newly confirmed infections per day are rising in 47 states, and deaths are up in 34.
  • Protesters turned out by the hundreds in Turin, Milan and other Italian cities and towns Monday to vent their anger, sometimes violently, at the latest pandemic restrictions that force restaurants and cafes to close early and shutter cinemas, gyms and other leisure venues.
  • The World Health Organization chief warned Monday that abandoning efforts to control the coronavirus pandemic, as suggested by a top US official, was “dangerous”, urging countries not to “give up”. He acknowledged that after months of battling the new coronavirus, which has claimed more than 1.1 million lives globally, a certain level of “pandemic fatigue” had set in.
  • Pope Francis will have to forego meeting Catholics at the annual Advent and Christmas masses in the Vatican owing to the resurgent coronavirus pandemic.
  • France alone may be experiencing 100,000 new coronavirus cases per day – double the latest official figures – Prof Jean-François Delfraissy, who heads the scientific council that advises the government on the pandemic, said. Tougher coronavirus containment measures could be announced in the country later this week.
  • The Czech government has ordered a 9pm curfew and will limit retail sales on Sundays, as part of tighter measures adopted to stem a surge in Covid-19 infections.
  • Germany is on the verge of losing control of its fight against the coronavirus, Angela Merkel has reportedly warned colleagues. In an indication of the growing concern, Merkel brought forward a meeting on additional coronavirus restrictions with the leaders of Germany’s 16 states from Friday to Wednesday.
  • Belgium’s intensive care units will be overrun in a fortnight if the rate of infection continues, a spokesman for country’s Covid-19 crisis centre has said.
  • Italians have been advised against trips to other European countries because of surging coronavirus cases, with the foreign ministry warning they could get trapped overseas if travel bans became necessary.
  • More than 50 Tory MPs seek "clear road map" out of lockdown curbs in northern England.
  • Warrington is latest part of England to move into the top tier of Covid-19 measures.

Welcome to our live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic in the UK and abroad
Here is a quick rundown of the top UK headlines this Tuesday morning:

  • The levels of protective antibodies in people wane "quite rapidly" after they are infected with Covid-19, say researchers.They say immunity appears to be fading and there is a risk of catching the virus multiple times. A team from Imperial College London found the number of people testing positive for antibodies – a key part of our immune defences – has fallen by 26% between June and September
  • More than 50 Tory MPs have written to the PM calling for a"clear road map" out of lockdown restrictions in northern England, warning the region risks being "left behind".The letter from the Northern Research Group said the pandemic threatened Boris Johnson's pledge to "level-up" the region. All the areas under the strictest restrictions of the government's three tier system for England are in the North or the Midlands
  • Warrington, in north west England, is the latest area to move into “very high” tier 3 Covid-19 restrictions as infection rates continue to rise. The tougher measures – which came into force at midnight – require pubs and bars not serving substantial meals to close and ban households from mixing indoors or outdoors in hospitality venues or private gardens
  • Coronavirus has "thrived" among black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) communities because of structural race discrimination , a Labour report says. Its author, Baroness Lawrence, said these groups were "over-exposed" and faced "barriers" to healthcare. A No 10 adviser has said “structural racism” was not in itself a "reasonable explanation" for rates differing between ethnic groups
  • Victoria Derbyshire has apologised after saying she would break the rule of six so her family could celebrate Christmas together. The BBC presenter previously told the Radio Times her family of seven knew the risks and would be "sensible" but "we have to be together at Christmas". But in a Twitter thread posted on Tuesday morning, she said had been "wrong" and "hypothetical" and that her family would "continue to follow whatever rules are in place" on 25 December.

Protests and moves towards new lockdowns in Europe

Protests have taken place against Covid restrictions in cities across Italy. There was violence in Milan and Turin as demonstrators clashed with police over the introduction of night curfews and the closure of restaurants, bars, gyms and cinemas. Read more on that story here.
Belgium will decide this weekend whether to impose an immediate second national lockdown, according to interfederal Covid-19 spokesman Yves Van Laethem. Half the country’s 2,000 intensive care beds are full and he believes by the weekend 1,250 of the beds will probably be occupied.
The Slovak government wants to test the entire population from this weekend. Prime Minister Igor Matovic hopes to identify tens of thousands of infected people, then they and their families would spend the next 10 days in quarantine.

  • In Russia, masks will have to be worn in many public places from tomorrow – and catering services will have to shut from 11pm
  • Danes will have to start wearing masks indoors in most public spaces from Thursday - more than 1,000 infections were reported yesterday over a 28-hour period
  • The Czech Republic will start a night curfew tomorrow night from 09:00 to 05:00 – it has the highest infection rate in Europe.

Germany’s DIVI intensive care and emergency medicine association is warning of a “dramatic shortage of nurses” as infections surged 11,409 in 24 hours – there’s no shortage of beds, just a lack of 3,500-plus specialists.
France’s government convenes its health defence council today and the big question is whether to impose some form of lockdown as early as this weekend. The head of the science council says daily infections could be “around 100,000”. Paris region hospitals have been told to halt from Friday any unrelated surgery or medical activities if they get in the way of Covid crisis or critical care.

'No clear rules' on exiting tier three - Warrington council leader

Warrington, in north-west England, is the latest area to move into Tier three Covid-19 measures as infection rates continue to rise.
Labour council leader Russ Bowden has said it was the right decision to move the area into the "very high" Covid alert level, with cases remaining "stubbornly high".
Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme , he said he could not see a way out of the top tier of restrictions for his area, adding that he did not know what measurements the government were using for putting places in the various tiers in the first place.
"There are no clear rules about what the success criteria are and how you move between the different tiered layers," he said.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said that the "simplest and most effective way" for areas to get out of tier three was to get the R number - the rate at which the virus is spreading - "down to one or below".
The Department of Health also said other data taken into account included which age groups were being affected and the pressures facing the NHS in those areas.

Melbourne's hard-won success after marathon lockdown

Phil Mercer - BBC News Sydney
Melbourne's grinding second coronavirus lockdown began in the chill of winter.
In early July, the nights were long and dark, and Australia's cultural capital was confronting the terrifying reality of another deadly wave of infections.
More than 110 days later, experts say it is emerging as a world leader in disease suppression alongside places including Singapore, Vietnam, South Korea, New Zealand and Hong Kong.
Raina McIntyre, a biosecurity professor at the University of New South Wales' Kirby Institute, told the BBC that Australia's response had been "light years ahead" of the US and the UK.
Read here to find out more about Melbourne's approach.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 09:32

Hope as Irish-led Oxford vaccine shows 'strong immune response' in adults

Rachael O'Connor - Irish Post
The effect of one of the worlds first coronavirus vaccines is showing a 'strong immune response' among adults, researchers have said.
Human trials have been ongoing on the AstraZeneca and Oxford University Covid vaccine for some months now, and is currently on advanced phase III trials.
According to an update from pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, the effect from the vaccine has so far been "encouraging", showing an immune response among both the elderly and younger people.
A spokesperson for AstraZeneca said it was "encouraging to see immunogenecity responses were similar between older and younger adults".
Participants in the vaccine trials include adults aged 56-69 and those over 70, as well as younger participants-- a full report on Phase II of the trials is expected to be published in a medical journal in the coming weeks.
"Our ongoing trials will provide further data, but this marks a key milestone and reassures us that the vaccine is safe for use and induces strong immune responses in both parts of the immune system in all adult groups," the university said.
Work on the vaccine is being led by Professor Adrian Hill, an Irish vaccinologist who previously developed treatments for Ebola and malaria.
Trials were paused earlier this month when a participant died suddenly, however it was found his sad death was unrelated to the vaccine trials and they have since returned.
The Oxford Vaccine is one of 10 in the world currently at the most advanced stage of trials, and is a contender to become the first to go into mass production.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 09:46

Victoria Derbyshire sorry for Christmas rule-breaking comments

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Victoria Derbyshire has apologised after saying she would break the rule of six so her family could celebrate Christmas together.
The BBC presenter previously told the Radio Times her family of seven knew the risks and would be "sensible" but "we have to be together at Christmas".
However, in a Twitter thread posted on Tuesday morning, she apologised for her comments, saying they had been "wrong" and "hypothetical".
She added that her family would "continue to follow whatever rules are in place" on 25 December.
Derbyshire has a family of four plus her mum, her mum's partner and her husband's dad. It is not clear if the rule of six will apply at Christmas.
The journalist previously told the Radio Times: "If the rule of six is still in place... we're breaking it to have the rule of seven. We just are."
The rule of six makes it illegal for groups of more than six people to meet up in England.
Tweet  Victoria Derbyshire:

:Left Quotes:  Good morning. I’m starting the day by saying I’m sorry: a few weeks ago the Radio Times asked me (amongst other things) what would potentially happen at Christmas with my own family if the rule of six was still in place....
I talked about my mum, her partner & my dad-in-law spending it with us - making seven in our home in a Tier One area (medium). It was hypothetical - however I was totally wrong to say it & I’m sorry. We’ll of course continue to follow whatever rules are in place on Dec 25th
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 09:50

Russia tightens face mask rules as death toll rises

Sarah Rainsford - BBC Moscow Correspondent
Russia is ordering restaurants and bars to close between 11pm and 6am and tightening the rules on face masks as the country reports 320 deaths from coronavirus, the highest daily toll.
After a summer of lax controls, Moscow recently began insisting on face coverings indoors and fining businesses that failed to enforce the rules.
But this new order applies to the whole country and it comes after a flurry of reports about provincial hospitals running out of beds, overflowing morgues and overworked doctors.
President Vladimir Putin has assured businesses that there will be no new national lockdown - to protect the economy as far as possible; officials insist that Russia is well equipped to cope with this renewed surge in infections.
But even state media are reporting a more problematic picture with the virus this time, especially in the regions.

Covid and the lingering 'brain fog'

Michelle Roberts - Health editor, BBC News online
Some people who recover from Covid say they have been left with a lingering "brain fog" - muddled thinking and difficulty concentrating, as well as fatigue.
Now a new piece of research , yet to be published and peer reviewed, suggests it could be symptomatic of the damage the virus can do to the brain.
Researchers from Imperial College London looked at IQ test results for thousands of people who had recovered from confirmed or suspected Covid-19. They found the scores were worse than a group of healthy people of similar ages and educational level.
This blunting of IQ levels occurred even among people who had not needed hospital treatment for their Covid illness, suggesting it can happen in milder cases as well as severe ones.
Experts say it is too early to know if the impairment is significant and permanent.
Experiencing some cognitive decline following a severe infection is well-recognised. It can happen with other diseases and may well improve, given time.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 11:06

Who are the MPs calling for a 'road map' out of lockdown curbs?

Calls for the prime minister to offer a "clear roadmap" out of lockdown restrictions in northern England are being led by a group called the Northern Research Group.
It was formed in recent weeks by Tory MPs representing northern England seats and the 35-strong group says it wants to ensure that the government delivers on promises made.
Its members include several MPs who won seats in traditional Labour heartlands - the so-called "Red Wall" - at last year's general election.
The group's leader Jake Berry, who has been the Conservative MP for Rossendale and Darwen since 2010, said it was not "about giving government a bad time".
Read more about the group here .

'Rage on the streets of Italy' - papers cover anti-lockdown protests

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Protesters clashing with police in Milan overnight

Italian papers this morning cover the violent anti-lockdown protests that took place across Italy overnight, from Turin and Milan to Rome, Naples and Catania.
"Rage on the streets of Italy" is La Repubblica’s main headline .
In a series of dedicated articles, the daily tells of the looting in Turin, where “hooded figures - amongst whom were ultras known to the police – ransacked whatever they could find and destroyed the facades of the same bars and restaurants whose owners had taken to the streets peacefully earlier yesterday”.
"Some participants were affiliated to the neofascist ultras, but others were students, small business owners hit by the curfews […] which caused clashes among the protesters as some tried to stop the violence," says Il Corriere della Sera .
The leader of the protest in Naples tells Il Mattino that “the city is a ticking time bomb – but the real violence is what the government is doing by forcing thousands of citizens back into lockdown without any form of financial aid".
Il Fatto Quotidiano notes that the minister of the interior had already warned that this would be a "hot autumn" back in July: "These words now seem like a prophecy," it says. "Rage and frustration are perfect ingredients for those who want to exploit the tensions. Security forces can't rule out that the planned protests that should take place over the next few days could be exploited by provocateurs and infiltrators."
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 11:10

India records lowest Covid-19 numbers in three months

India has recorded its lowest daily Covid-19 numbers in three months with just over 36,000 new confirmed cases and 488 deaths in 24 hours.
The news comes as India is experiencing lower than usual daily averages - on Monday for example, the spike in new cases was around 45,000.
In comparison, India was registering an average of 90,000 daily cases in September - a hike from August too, when cases hovered around 70,000 a day.
Testing so far has remained fairly consistent, with nearly a million being carried out across India every day. But even though it looks like there’s a slowdown in case numbers, experts still say it should be regarded with caution. They believe that the recent decline in cases and deaths is a promising signal, but it's still early to say that the pandemic is receding.
The government has also reiterated the need to take precautions and practice social distancing as India’s festival season of Diwali is fast approaching, which could see a spike in cases as families and friends get together to celebrate.

European Commission vice-president tests positive for Covid-19

Margaritis Schinas, a European Commission vice-president, has tested positive for coronavirus.
In a tweet, he said the results came after a regular Covid-19 test he had to do before a meeting of the College of Commissioners.
He is now self-isolating as required.
It comes after talks between the EU and the UK government over a post-Brexit trade deal resumed in London following a week-long standoff .
Tweet  Margaritis Schinas:
:Left Quotes:  I have just learned that my regular scheduled #COVID19 test before the College came back positive. I am now self-isolating as required. Stay safe.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 11:15

'I feel unsafe when customers don't wear masks'

Face coverings must be worn in a range of settings across the UK , including in shops, supermarkets and shopping centres, unless you have a medical exemption, with fines for rule-breakers.
BBC Newsbeat have been talking to supermarket workers about their views on customers wearing face coverings.
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Arron, who has worked at a supermarket in Wrexham, north Wales, for seven years, says he feels "uneasy" if he sees a customer in store without a mask or lanyard showing they're exempt.
"There are people who work and shop in supermarkets who still have a fear of catching Covid - me being one of them," he says. "It really does bother me."
Although his loves his job, colleagues and regular customers, he is now looking for new work because of shoppers who don't wear face coverings.
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Meanwhile, Liv, who works at a supermarket in Ipswich, Suffolk, says it is someone's "personal choice" if they wear a face covering, and it doesn't bother her if they do or not.
The 28-year-old also thinks people who are exempt get a backlash if they're not wearing them.
"If you see someone not wearing a mask, just mind your business. As long as you're two metres away from them, I don't see how it affects you."
You can read more here .

UK deaths involving Covid-19 up 60% in a week

Robert Cuffe - BBC head of statistics
Covid-19 was involved in 761 (or 61%) of the deaths registered in the UK in the week of 16 October.
The latest figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that this figure is up sharply on the week before, but still far below the peak reached in April.
Overall, there were 11,928 deaths registered in the UK that week, slightly more than would be expected at this time of year, a so-called “excess” of deaths of about 6%.
We would expect the weekly number of deaths to rise steadily in any given year on the way into winter.
The question in coming weeks will be whether or not continuing growth in the number of Covid-19 deaths will lead to more excess deaths.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 11:37

What areas are now in tier three?

Coronavirus rules differ across the UK's four nations of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland .
In England, a tiered system of restrictions has been introduced where every area falls into one of three categories - medium (tier one), high (tier two) or very high (tier three), depending on the local infection rate.
Tier three restrictions prevent households mixing indoors or outdoors in hospitality venues or private gardens and require pubs and bars not serving substantial meals to close.
Several areas in the North and Midlands have already been placed in this tier, including:

  • Warrington
  • Liverpool City Region
  • Greater Manchester
  • Lancashire
  • South Yorkshire

Nottingham and parts of the surrounding county will move into tier three on Thursday .
Check the Covid rules that apply to you with our postcode look-up here .

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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 12:58

Protesters clash with police over Italy's new anti-virus rules

Dramatic footage has emerged from Italy, where activists have been clashing with police over new Covid-19 restrictions in the country.
Petrol bombs were hurled at police in the northern cities of Turin and Milan, while thousands of people gathered in the centre of Naples.
Protests took place in about a dozen other cities, including Rome, Genoa, Palermo and Trieste.
The demonstrations began after the government's order to close restaurants, bars, gyms and cinemas came into effect at 18:00 local time.
Restaurants, bars and cafes must stop table service at 18:00 and offer only take-away until midnight. Shops and most businesses will remain open.
The new restrictions - in force until 24 November - will also see 75% of classes at high schools and universities conducted online.
You can read more here .

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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 13:06

The latest global data on Covid-19

Coronavirus is continuing its spread across the world, with more than 40 million confirmed cases in 189 countries and in excess of one million deaths .
Cases have risen over the last few months in several parts of the globe and Europe is currently seeing the steepest rise in new cases.
The US has recorded more than 225,000 deaths from coronavirus - the world's highest official death toll.
New cases hit a record daily high on Friday , with more than 83,000 new infections.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 13:12

Analysis: MPs fear election promises moving down priority list

Nick Eardley - Political correspondent
December's general election in the UK saw the Conservatives demolish the "red wall" - winning seats from Labour in the north of England which it hadn't held in a generation.
The government pledged to repay that support - before the pandemic hit, throwing normal politics up in the air.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has continued to talk about that agenda - but the 50 signatories of Tuesday's letter from the Northern Research Group are worried that Covid will see some of those pledges fall down the political priority list.
In particular, they share concerns with many Labour leaders in the North that there isn't a clear road map out of coronavirus restrictions.
It's been a bruising few weeks for the government's relationship with the North, with some very public rows over support for local economies.
These MPs support the government - and say their intervention is designed to influence its plans. But it also shows fears for the north of England are shared across the political spectrum.

Sunak on free school meals and Northern 'frustrations'

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Sunak defended the government's stance over free school meals in England

Chancellor Rishi Sunak says the government has already given money to councils for free school meals in school holidays.
Mr Sunak said the narrative that the government voted against free school meals is not fair, as they provide them in term time. He stressed they are "absolutely committed" to making sure vulnerable children do not go hungry.
"We've got to be able to trust local councils to make decisions for their people," he told BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat .
"We have provided resources for local authorities to help in a targeted way the most vulnerable children that they need to look after."
But councils say the money they were given over the summer had to be spent within 12 weeks.
The ongoing row follows footballer Marcus Rashford's campaign to feed poorer and vulnerable children directly during school holidays in England.
Last week the government ruled out extending meal vouchers in England to cover holidays.
Northern 'frustrations'
In the same interview, the chancellor also acknowledged recent "frustrations at restrictions" raised by 50 Tory MPs in a letter to to the prime minister, in which they called for a "clear road map" out of lockdown restrictions in northern England.
Mr Sunak stressed the government wanted to invest in the north of England, as pledged during the general election.
"I also share their passion and their ambition for the North," he said, promising the government "remained committed" to investing in these areas.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:00

Russia steps up restrictions as infections surge

Russia has brought in tighter restrictions to try to stem a surge in coronavirus cases.
From Wednesday, face masks will be mandatory in all potentially crowded areas including public transport, taxis, car parks and lifts. Regional authorities will have responsibility for implementing the new rules.
Russia brought in similar measures at the beginning of the initial outbreak in the spring but lifted them in July as the number of cases eased.
On Tuesday, however, the country reported a daily record of 320 deaths from the virus. Monday saw the number of new infections hit a record 17,347 over 24 hours.
Russia has the world's fourth highest number of Covid-19 cases after the US, India and Brazil.
Read more about the situation in Russia here.

Rapid tests could help get students home for Christmas

Sean Coughlan - BBC News, education correspondent
Students in England could make it home for Christmas with the help of new rapid turnaround Covid tests being piloted in universities.
The new tests - which can return results within an hour - would be self-administered swabs of the nose and throat and would not need a laboratory to process the results.
They are designed to find out whether someone has "high enough levels of Covid-19 in their body to make them infectious to others", says Durham University, which is running a pilot project, as is De Montfort University, in Leicester.
Durham says its pilot project, beginning this week for staff and students in two of its colleges, will be able to deliver results within 20 to 30 minutes.
But there have been questions about the feasibility of how quickly this could be scaled up - and how to avoid what the Sage group, which advises the government, calls the "significant risk" of students causing outbreaks by moving for Christmas and New Year.
Universities, who would face the challenge of keeping students in Christmas isolation, have called for a faster system of mass testing.
So far this term there have been virus cases at 118 universities across the UK, according to tracking by the Unicovid website, with tens of thousands of students having to self-isolate.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:04

Cardiff Half Marathon delayed again

The 2020 Cardiff Half Marathon has been moved for a second time because of the coronavirus outbreak.
It was already postponed from this October to next March, and now has been put back again to 3 October 2021.
Organisers had hoped to hold two half-marathons next year - the postponed event in March and then another as usual in October.
However, they say rising Covid-19 cases and new lockdown restrictions mean it will not be possible to hold an event like this in March.

Scunthorpe's next three games postponed over Covid-19 cases

Scunthorpe's next three League Two fixtures have been postponed because of positive Covid-19 cases at the club.
It had been set to play Salford City on Tuesday, Colchester United on Friday and Port Vale on 3 November.
A club statement said eight players have tested positive for Covid-19, with a further 10 needing to self-isolate after being in close contact with them.
The English Football League has said there will be an investigation into the circumstances around the postponements.
Scunthorpe's remaining 10 players and staff will stop training for seven days as a precaution.
Read more about the story here.

Greater Manchester fund aims to help Covid-hit firms and people

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has launched a new initiative aimed at helping businesses and communities in the region affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Unveiling it at a virtual press conference, he said the initiative - called oneGM - was "the Greater Manchester family coming together on a cross-community basis to see how we’re going to support people and businesses through what is going to be a really challenging winter".
He says the scheme will have three elements, including:

  • Government support
  • Extra help from businesses
  • Support for the voluntary sector and the individuals they help

The Labour mayor said local leaders were "hopeful" to get £65m in government support - despite No 10 offering £60m - "because of the decision to backdate tier two support".
He said leaders planned to put a business support package in place to help low-paid workers whose workplaces shut as well as the self-employed and industries where freelancers predominate, such as the arts sector.
Mr Burnham was joined on the call by speakers involved with the region, including the former Manchester United player and Salford City football club owner Gary Neville and the Bishop of Manchester, David Walker.
It comes as the region became the first in England to be moved into tier three restrictions, against local leaders' wishes .
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:12

Inside a Syrian refugee camp where Covid is spreading

Doctors say Covid-19 is now rampant in the refugee camps of Idlib, north-west Syria.
Social distancing, masks and isolation are almost impossible.
The number of positive coronavirus cases rose tenfold in this region last month.
Aid agencies say that due to a lack of testing, the real figure is expected to be much higher.
Dr Mouheb Kadour says Covid-19 is just the latest problem people are having to deal with.
"Aeroplanes, rockets, corona, angry, poor, Assad security - it's the same - all of these terms mean, for us, death."
He says the virus is "out of control" in the camps and warns this winter will be "very hard"

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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:18

Talks to be held over return of fans to Scottish football

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Talks between the Scottish government and the football authorities aimed at seeing a return of fans to games will take place later this week.
Scotland moves to a five-tier Covid-19 restrictions system from next Monday.
And the Scottish FA and SPFL have asked what that means for football, given the proposed framework says areas in tiers zero and one can open stadiums to a restricted number of fans.
Apart from two test games in September, fans have not been allowed since March.

Andy Burnham attacks Tesco over face coverings

House of Lords - Parliament
Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has criticised Tesco for not enforcing coronavirus rules on masks.
He told the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee that, during recent talks with the government over tier three restrictions, he had asked for powers to close businesses not deemed to be doing enough to make themselves Covid-safe.
Mr Burnham said: "I'm not just talking about pubs and restaurants. There are large supermarkets in Greater Manchester who in my view have not properly implemented the requirements around face coverings.
"I'll name one chain, Tesco. I don't believe they have taken a responsible attitude to this issue. They've said it's not for them to enforce. Well, I think it is for those organisations to enforce."
The BBC has contacted Tesco for comment.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:25

Latest UK coronavirus statistics

A further 367 people have died in the UK within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19, the latest government figures show . This is the highest daily death figure since May.
It brings the total number of coronavirus deaths to 45,365.
There have also been a further 22,885 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK as of 0900 on Tuesday. This brings the total number of cases in the UK to 917,575.

Scotland's tier system 'will remain flexible' - Sturgeon

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been giving a statement to the Scottish Parliament to kick-start a debate about her government's new five-tier system of restrictions for tackling Covid-19.
A vote is due to be held around 19:00
So far she has stressed the importance of "flexibility" under the five-tier system, which comes into force on 2 November.
Ms Sturgeon confirmed the details will be kept under review as the system develops.
"This may be particularly important for the hospitality industry," she added.
She also announced that pubs and restaurants in many parts of Scotland will be able to service alcohol indoors again from next week.
The move would allow licensed premises in level two of the country's new five-tier system to serve alcohol with a meal until mid-evening.
Find out more about how the tier system will work .
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Scotland to ease pub and restaurant restrictions

Pubs and restaurants in many areas of Scotland will be able to serve alcohol indoors again from next week, the first minister has announced .
Nicola Sturgeon said the move would allow licensed premises in level two of the country's new five-tier system to serve alcohol with a meal until 8pm.
In level three areas - likely to be much of the central belt - they can reopen but must not serve alcohol.
The new rules are expected to come into force from Monday.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:29

Lanarkshire 'may be placed under level four measures'

James Shaw - BBC Scotland reporter
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed that two local authorities in Scotland may come under the highest level of coronavirus restrictions from next week.
She said level four measures may be necessary in North and South Lanarkshire because of very high transmission rates - no Scottish council is currently under such restrictions.
However, she also suggested the rate of infection may be stablising and the strictest controls would only be imposed if absolutely necessary.
Under tier four, schools remain open but all non-essential shops, as well as pubs and restaurants, would be closed.
Speaking at Holyrood, the first minister said most of the central belt would be at level three - broadly the same as tier three in England. Much of rest of the country would be at level two, but the Highlands, Orkney, Shetland, the Western Isles and Moray would be at level one.
Dundee is expected to be at level three.
Ms Sturgeon said final decisions would be announced on Thursday.
Read more.

Nottingham residents urged to show resilience under tier three rules

People living in Nottingham and surrounding boroughs have been urged to keep showing "resilience" ahead of new tier three controls coming into force .
Tougher Covid-19 rules for Nottingham city and the Broxtowe, Gedling and Rushcliffe borough council areas begin on Thursday, with finer details of the measures expected to be outlined later today.
Rushcliffe Borough Council leader Simon Robinson said: "We've got two months before Christmas. I am confident, if we get on top of these restrictions, get compliance from business from our residents, we are going to see the infection rate coming down and going in the right direction.
"If that is the case, I am sure we'll get the support from government to actually start to reduce these restrictions and give people that freedom and get some enjoyment out of Christmas."
However, some Nottingham pub owners have said it is "heartbreaking" they will be forced to close their businesses while tier three restrictions are in place.
One landlord said he felt pubs had been blamed for the city's infection rate rise.
Read more about that here.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 17:38

Covid-19 cases rising steeply in western Europe

Coronavirus is surging in many parts of the world, with Europe currently seeing the steepest rise in new cases.
Spain and France have become the first western European countries to record more than one million cases, and several others have recorded their highest number of new infections since the start of the pandemic.
Spain has declared a state of emergency and imposed a night-time curfew. Italy has ordered bars, restaurants, gyms and cinemas to close, leading to protests .France has imposed a night-time curfew on major cities and on Tuesday, the Czech Republic introduced a week-long ban on people leaving their homes between 21:00 and 04:59 each day.
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Post by Kitkat on Tue Oct 27 2020, 18:00

Today's main developments

Today's live page will be closing shortly. Here's a round-up of the key virus-related stories of the day from the UK and around the world:

  • The UK has recorded its highest number of daily deaths since May. A further 367 deaths within 28 days of a positive test have been reported. It brings the total number of UK deaths to 45,365, according to government figures. Yvonne Doyle, medical director of Public Health England, warned that the rising death toll from Covid-19 was likely to "continue for some time".
  • People in Scotland have been getting more information about what a five-tier system of coronavirus rules, similar to the three-tier structure in England, will mean for them. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon outlined the plans - which will allow many pubs and restaurants to serve alcohol indoors again - ahead of a debate in Scottish Parliament.
  • Europe's daily Covid deaths rose by nearly 40% compared with the previous week, the World Health Organization (WHO) has told the BBC. WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris said France, Spain, the UK, the Netherlands and Russia accounted for the majority of cases which increased by a third.
  • Covid tests with results within an hour are being piloted in universities - which could help students get home for Christmas. In England, about 1.2 million students are expected to move in December from a university to a home address in another region, raising concerns about the virus being spread between areas with different levels of infection.
  • Protests have taken place place across Italy after new restrictions to curb the country's second wave of Covid came into effect on Monday night. Clashes were reported in Milan and Turin, where petrol bombs were thrown at officers.
  • Russia is tightening restrictions, making face masks compulsory in crowded places. It has the world's fourth highest number of Covid-19 cases after the US, India and Brazil.
  • The Czech Republic has introduced a night-time curfew, meaning no-one is allowed to leave their home between 21:00 and 04:59 except to travel to and from work, for medical reasons or a few other exceptions.


That's all for now

We're bringing today's live page to a close. Thanks for joining us.

Today's coverage was brought to you by Sarah Collerton, Paul Gribben, Victoria Lindrea and Mary O'Connor.


We'll be back again tomorrow with all the latest news. Have a good evening.

    Current date/time is Wed Jan 20 2021, 03:52