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COVID-19: All the latest LIVE worldwide updates - today's updates are also on our Portal page, here)

Coronavirus - 27th February 2021

Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 09:50

Summary for Saturday, 27th February

  • UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak says he'll use the Budget to level with people about the state of the economy in the wake of the coronavirus crisis
  • Sunak has told the Financial Times the UK's finances have been "exposed" by the pandemic
  • President Joe Biden's $1.9tn (£1.4tn) relief plan to help Americans during the pandemic is approved in the House of Representatives
  • A private family funeral for Captain Sir Tom Moore who raised more than £33m for NHS charities during lockdown last year, takes place today
  • Captain Sir Tom died aged 100 on 2 February after contracting coronavirus
  • People are reacting to news the next phase of the UK's vaccine rollout will be based on age rather than occupation, with those in their 40s next in line
  • A further 345 deaths in the UK within 28 days of a positive Covid test were announced on Friday


Good morning

Welcome to today’s live page. Here is a summary of some of the key headlines in the UK this morning:


What the papers say


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Many of Saturday's papers look ahead to Wednesday's budget.

  • The Financial Times says Rishi Sunak will make clear supporting the economy through the coronavirus pandemic has left the UK with a "bill that will have to be paid".
  • The Chancellor is urging Tory colleagues to show their support for his "tough message" with tax rises “likely”.
  • The Times describes government plans for a new mortgage guarantee scheme as a boost for first-time buyers, giving "tens of thousands of young people" their first step on the ladder.
  • The Daily Mail reports it has received letters from more than 100 readers who all claim their relatives' deaths were wrongly attributed to coronavirus. Several MPs and doctors are calling for an inquiry, amid concerns Covid-19 is sometimes being given undue prominence on death certificates.
  • The i weekend newspaper and the Daily Express both focus on the government's latest coronavirus briefing after it was announced the over-40s will be the next priority group for vaccination.
  • "Don't wreck it now" is the headline in the Express - echoing a warning from England's deputy chief medical officer Jonathan Van-Tam that the battle against the virus is far from won.

Read more.

Summary of recent worldwide events from The Guardian:


  • US president Joe Biden has that Covid-19 cases and hospitalisations could go back up as new variants emerge, and urged people that now was “not the time to relax”. Cases have been increasing in the US for the past three days compared to last week.
  • Brazil’s capital Brasilia entered a ‘total’ 24-hour lockdown on Friday amid a worsening virus outbreak that is threatening to overwhelm hospitals.
  • Israel’s drop in coronavirus infections has reversed and the country’s R rate is inching toward 1 again, as Israel continues to reopen its economy after exiting a six-week lockdown.
  • The Czech government has approved a series of strict restrictions limiting people’s movement over the next three weeks and tightening shop and school closures in an attempt to slow fast spreading Covid-19 infections.
  • Nigeria and Honduras are both expecting their first vaccine deliveries from the COVAX programme, with Nigeria set to receive 4 million doses next week and Honduras nearly 430,000 doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine in March.
  • Ireland has added 13 mainly Central and South American countries to its 14-day mandatory quarantine list, which will soon require arrivals from countries designated as “high risk” to quarantine in designated hotels.


Biden's Covid relief bill passes House vote

US President Joe Biden's $1.9tn (£1.4tn) relief plan to help Americans during the Covid pandemic has been approved in the House of Representatives.
The Democrats only have a slim, 10-seat majority in the House, but they found sufficient numbers - 219 to 212 - in a vote that went into the early morning on Saturday.
Two Democrats joined Republicans - who see it as too expensive - in opposing it.
The bill must now go to the evenly-divided Senate, which has already blocked a key element - doubling the US minimum wage to $15 an hour.
The package seeks to boost vaccinations and testing, and stabilise the economy.
The vote comes in the same week the US passed 500,000 coronavirus-related deaths - the largest figure of any nation in the world.
President Biden has championed what he calls the American Rescue Plan as a way to help struggling Americans through Covid-19.
But Republicans say the plan is unnecessarily large and stuffed with Democratic priorities unrelated to the pandemic.
Read more.
Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 10:03

Auckland locks down as one new case detected

New Zealand's biggest city of Auckland will go into a seven-day lockdown from 06:00 on Sunday after one new case of coronavirus was detected.
The Level 3 alert issues a stay-at-home order and closes most schools and public venues. The rest of the country will have a lesser Level 2 lockdown, also for a week.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says it is "frustrating".
The new incident involves a person who went to a doctor on Friday afternoon for a Covid test and then went to the gym.
New Zealand has been taking strict measures to prevent Covid spread. There have been 26 deaths and 2,300 confirmed cases.
A three-day lockdown of Auckland was ordered earlier this month , when three new local cases were discovered.

Russia reports 11,534 new Covid-19 cases

Russia has reported a further 11,534 Covid-19 cases, including 1,825 in Moscow, taking the national tally to 4,234,720 since the pandemic began.
There were an additional 439 deaths in the same period, the government coronavirus task force said, bringing the official death toll to 85,743.

Turkey's ruling party criticised for holding public rallies in high infection areas

Turkey’s ruling party has come under fire for holding political rallies in areas near the Black Sea where locals face rising numbers of coronavirus cases.
The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) has been hosting a number of gathering across the country in recent weeks, with many attended in person by the president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The Black Sea provinces of Rize, Trabzon, Giresun and Ordu have recorded some of the highest weekly infection figures, with medical experts linking the rise in cases to the rallies, Al Jazeera reports.
Sinan Adiyaman, a member of the Turkish Medical Association’s Covid-19 monitoring board, told the outlet: “The number of cases is increasing wherever the government is holding congresses.”
“They also held a congress in [the Mediterranean city of] Mersin and the number of cases increased there as well. This is also the case in the Black Sea provinces because thousands of people attend these congresses.”
Adiyaman said the government is ignoring national and global health recommendations.
Sinan Adiyaman, a member of the Turkish Medical Association’s Covid-19 monitoring board, told the outlet: “The number of cases is increasing wherever the government is holding congresses.”
“They also held a congress in [the Mediterranean city of] Mersin and the number of cases increased there as well. This is also the case in the Black Sea provinces because thousands of people attend these congresses.”
Adiyaman said the government is ignoring national and global health recommendations.
Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 11:05

Portugal extends UK and Brazil flight suspension

Alison Roberts - Portugal Correspondent, Lisbon
Portugal's government is extending the suspension on commercial or private flights between mainland Portugal and the UK and Brazil until 16 March.
It is part of the continued restrictions to limit the spread of coronavirus, and comes after the current mainland lockdown was also extended until 16 March.
In a statement this morning, the government says only flights "ofa humanitarian nature" are currently allowed to and from Brazil and the UK: for the repatriation of nationals of European Union and other Schengen Area countries and their families, or of third-country nationals legally resident in Portugal.
All passengers, with the exception of children under two, must present proof of a negative coronavirus test taken within 72 hours before embarkation and also spend 14 days in quarantine, either at home or at a location indicated by the health authorities. Alternatively they can await their connecting flight in a dedicated space at the airport.
Repatriation flights to their own countries for Brazil or UK nationals from mainland Portugal are also allowed.

Restrictions to be extended in the Philippines capital Manila

The president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, has extended coronavirus restrictions in the capital of Manila after record rises in cases in recent days.
Curbs will stay in place for another month in Manila. The southern city of Davao and the northern city of Baguio are also under partial restrictions limiting business operations and public transport.
The decision follows 2,651 new cases reported on Friday, the highest daily increase in more than four months, and another new high of 2,921 new cases on Saturday.
The country is awaiting the arrival of vaccines made by China’s Sinovac Biotech and Britain’s AstraZeneca, which will reach the Philippines on Sunday and Monday respectively.
The southeast Asian nation is the last country in the region to get its initial shipment of vaccines, and has recorded the second-highest tally of infections and deaths.
Duterte has said he will maintain restrictions in the virus epicentre of Manila until mass vaccinations begin.
Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 14:04

How would an NHS vaccine passport app work?

By Leo Kelion & Rory Cellan-Jones
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There is speculation the NHS app could be amended to include a Covid vaccine certificate

As the UK gets closer to easing its coronavirus lockdowns, attention is turning to how we might safely mingle again.
Despite previous denials that a "Covid passport" app was being considered, it is now on the agenda.
Earlier this week The Times reported the facility will be built into the existing NHS app used to access health services in England.
Downing Street says the matter is still under review and it does not want to pre-empt anything by speculating on the subject.
But it's clear there would be several benefits, but there are still issues to be addressed.
Read on to find out more .

Wales reaches vaccine milestone of one million doses

More than one million doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered in Wales, according to the Welsh government.
Some 916,336 people have received their first dose, of which 89,053 have had a second jab, giving a total of 1,005,389 doses.
One in three of the country's adult population has now received at least one dose. Two doses are needed for full protection.
Health Minister Vaughan Gething says it is an "incredible marker within just 12 weeks of the first vaccines arriving in the country".
Read more here .
Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 14:09

India in a 'delicate phase' as Covid cases surge

By Vikas Pandey and Soutik Biswas

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Social distancing measures are not being strictly followed

After reporting a significant drop in the number of Covid-19 cases for months, some Indian states have seen a sharp uptick in infections in February.
In early February, physicians in Amravati district, some 700km (435 miles) from India's commercial capital, Mumbai, noticed a sudden surge in the number of people suffering from Covid-19.
Life in this cotton-growing district in the western state of Maharashtra had almost returned to normal after the first wave of infections last summer. The ICUs of the 1,600-bed state-run hospital and half-a-dozen private hospitals were nearly empty.
"But everything changed in February," says Anil Jadhav, a local journalist. "And now there's panic in the district."
Since the beginning of February, Amravati has recorded more than 10,000 cases, and there has been a similar rise in neighbouring districts. Maharashtra recorded nearly 9,000 cases on Thursday, the largest single-day spike in four months.
"People here have been not wearing masks. They have been attending unregulated mass gatherings such as marriages and campaigns for local elections.
"There is free intermingling of people, carriers are not getting isolated, and testing and tracking is low. This has led to this situation," Dr Sanjay Oak, a member of the state's Covid task force, tells the BBC.
Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 14:17

Oxygen explosion in Ukraine hospital kills one person and another is wounded

One person has been killed and another wounded in an oxygen explosion at a hospital in the western Ukrainian city of Chernivtsi, the country’s emergency service said.
The explosion occurred on the second floor of the hospital at lunchtime on Saturday and 20 people were evacuated, Reuter reports.
The service did not specify the cause of the incident.

Growing prevalence of highly contagious new variants in Italy

Italy has tightened restrictions in five of the country’s 20 regions in an effort to head off a rise in cases as scientists warned of a growing prevalence of highly contagious new variants.
Reuters reports:
Italy has established a four-tier colour-coded system (white, yellow, orange and red) which allows for measures to be calibrated according to infection levels, with assessments revised every week.
For the first time since the end of January, two regions - Basilicata and Molise - were shunted into the strictest red zone. This means bars and restaurants must be shuttered, movement severely restricted and all but essential shops closed.
Three regions moved from yellow to orange zones: Lombardy and Piedmont, which are centred on the wealthy northern cities of Milan and Turin respectively, and the central coastal region of Marche.
In these areas restaurants and bars are closed except for takeaways and people are not allowed to leave their towns except for emergencies, work and health reasons.
The island of Sardinia became the first region to be named a white zone, with only minimal restrictions. Today’s decision means that as of Monday, when it becomes effective, two regions will be classified as red, nine as orange, eight as yellow and one as white.
Yesterday, the health ministry signalled a continued rise in infections, with 20,499 new daily cases, up from 19,886 the day before. Over the last five days, new cases have increased by 35% by comparison with the same period last week.
Kitkat
Kitkat

Posts : 11343
Location : Around the bend

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Post by Kitkat Sat Feb 27 2021, 17:41

Irish police attacked at Dublin lockdown protest


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Gardaí (Irish police) in Dublin have been attacked after hundreds of people protesting against Covid-19 restrictions were prevented from gathering in St Stephen's Green.
Irish broadcaster RTÉ reported that a number of arrests have been made.
Police used batons to push demonstrators down Grafton Street but were attacked with fireworks, cans and bollards, RTÉ said.
The Office of Public Works closed the park after orders from police.
Read more here .

What's been happening today?

We're bringing our live page coverage to a close shortly. Before we do, here are some of the main stories we've been covering today:

  • Tributes have been paid to Captain Sir Tom Moore as his funeral took place in Bedford today. Hannah Ingram-Moore described her father as a "beacon of light" while Lucy Teixeira, his other daughter, said: "You may be gone but your message and your spirit lives on"
  • The 100-year-old, who died earlier this month after being diagnosed with coronavirus, had raised nearly £33m for NHS charities by walking laps of his garden
  • A woman has described the "horrific" anguish of losing both parents to Covid , just two weeks apart. Ray and Rosemary Scovell, from Sandown on the Isle of Wight, had been looking forward to their golden wedding anniversary
  • In the UK,19,682,048 people have now had a first coronavirus vaccine and 768,810 have had a second dose
  • There have been another 7,434 new cases of coronavirus reported in the UK in the past 24 hours and another 290 deaths of people who had tested positive in the previous 28 days
  • President Joe Biden's $1.9tn (£1.4tn) relief plan to help Americans during the Covid pandemic has been approved in the House of Representatives. The bill must now go to the Senate, which has already blocked a key element - doubling the US minimum wage to $15 an hour.


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Today's live page team has been: James Clarke, Victoria Lindrea, Hamish Mackay and Lauren Turner. We'll be back with more tomorrow.

    Current date/time is Mon May 17 2021, 14:58