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Coronavirus - 25th April 2021


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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 12:00

Summary for Sunday, 25th April

  • A campaign is being launched to encourage younger people to get the Covid vaccine when their turn comes
  • It comes as figures showed more than half of the UK's population have now received their first vaccine dose
  • Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it was a "brilliant milestone" but warned "the battle is not yet over"
  • India has set another world record for the number of new coronavirus infections for a fourth day running
  • There were a further 349,691 cases in the 24 hours to Sunday morning, with another 2,767 lives lost
  • At least 23 people have been killed in a fire at a hospital treating coronavirus patients in the capital of Iraq, Baghdad
  • Dozens of others were injured in the blaze, which erupted at the Ibn Khatib hospital on Saturday night
  • Some 8,000 spectators will attend the Carabao Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham as part of the official test programme
  • A man has been arrested in Spain on suspicion of assault after allegedly infecting 22 people with Covid

Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic.
We’ll be bringing you all the latest news from the UK and around the world.
Here are the main stories this morning:

  • A new campaign is being launched in the UK to encourage younger people to get the vaccine when their turn comes. The Department of Health has released a series of photos documenting the NHS's largest-ever vaccination programme alongside the campaign urging under-50s to get the jab
  • For a fourth day in a row, India has registered a world record rise in new infections, with just under 350,000 new daily cases. The number of deaths rose by 2,767
  • A fire at a coronavirus intensive care ward in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, has killed at least 23 people. The fire is thought to have been caused by an exploding oxygen tank
  • Around 33.5 million people in the UK have had at least one dose of a vaccine, meaning half the entire UK population, estimated at 66.7 million, has now received a first dose
  • Everyone in Scotland will be able to access rapid coronavirus testing, even if they have no symptoms, from Monday. Free lateral flow home test kits will be available for people to test themselves twice a week
  • 8,000 spectators will be at Wembley this afternoon for the League Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham - the biggest attendance at an outdoor sports event in the UK since the first lockdown in March last year
  • India’s prime minister Narendra Modi on Sunday urged all citizens to take Covid-19 vaccines and exercise caution, saying a “storm” of infections had shaken the country.
  • The US has said it is in talks to “rapidly deploy” aid to beleaguered healthcare workers in India and that it is gravely concerned about the situation there. Meanwhile, Delhi has extended its lockdown by a week.
  • The Met police said eight of its officers were injured as anti-lockdown protests in central London England turned violent . The force said five people were arrested for offences including assault on police and remain in custody.
  • The number of Covid-19 jabs administered globally surpassed the 1bn mark on Saturday.
  • At least 27 people were killed and 46 injured in a fire on Saturday at a hospital in south-eastern Baghdad that had been equipped to house Covid-19 patients, medical sources at three nearby hospitals told Reuters. The fire at the Ibn Khatib hospital in the Diyala Bridge area of the Iraqi capital occurred after an accident caused an oxygen tank to explode, the sources said.
  • Thailand has announced its highest number of coronavirus deaths, for the second consecutive day. It reported 2,438 new coronavirus cases and 11 new deaths, bringing the total number of infections to 55,460 and fatalities to 140 since the pandemic started last year.

Covid patients caught in deadly Baghdad fire

Iraq’s prime minister has dismissed key hospital officials on Sunday hours after a fire broke out in an intensive care unit for coronavirus patients in Baghdad, causing deaths and injuries, AP reports.
AFP said at least 23 people died and Reuters put the figure at least 27 after the blaze, believed to be caused by an oxygen cylinder exploding. More than 200 people were rescued, according to the health ministry.
The fire was put out in the early hours of the morning.
From AP:
In response to the fire, Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi fired the director-general of the Baghdad Health Department in the al-Rusafa area, where the hospital is located. He also fired the director of Ibh al-Khatib Hospital and its director of engineering and maintenance, according to a statement from the Health Ministry and his office.
After the fire first broke out, al-Khadhimi held an emergency meeting at the headquarters of the Baghdad Operations Command, which coordinates Iraqi security forces, according to a statement on his Twitter account.
In the meeting he said the incident amounted to negligence.
“Negligence in such matters is not a mistake, but a crime for which all negligent parties must bear responsibility,” he said. He gave Iraqi authorities 24 hours to present the results of an investigation.
UN envoy to Iraq Jeannine Hennis-Plasschaert expressed “shock and pain” over the incident in a statement and called for stronger protection measures in hospitals.
AFP reported that the government’s human rights commission has called on the prime minister to fire Health Minister Hassan al-Tamimi and “bring him to justice”. It said the incident was “a crime against patients exhausted by Covid-19 who put their lives in the hands of the health ministry and its institutions and instead of being treated, perished in flames”.
Al-Khademi has declared three days of national mourning.

Breaking News 

82 killed by fire at Iraq Covid hospital

Grim news from Iraq, where the interior ministry says the death toll from the hospital in Baghdad equipped to treat Covid patients has risen to 82 with 11o wounded, Reuters reports.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 12:19

Free test kits to be available on demand in Scotland

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The tests can be used by people who want to travel to the Scottish islands

"Rapid" Covid testing kits are to be made available to everyone in Scotland - even if they do not have symptoms.
The Scottish government said the free lateral flow tests would be available from tomorrow.
They can be picked up without an appointment from many local walk-in or drive-through test sites from 15:30 each afternoon, or ordered online.
The scheme is designed to find cases that would otherwise go undetected, the Scottish government said.
It means that anyone without Covid-19 symptoms, who does not already have access to asymptomatic testing, can test themselves.
Anyone travelling to a Scottish island is being encouraged to get a test beforehand, after travel rules were relaxed earlier this month.

Analysis: Helplessness as patients die without oxygen

Vikas Pandey - BBC News, Delhi

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India's capital, Delhi, has been been reporting more than 24,000 cases daily in the past few days. The hospitals are completely overrun, and healthcare workers are exhausted.
Most hospitals are full and many of them are refusing new admissions owing to the uncertainty over oxygen supply.
I know a few cases where patients have died because they did not get high-flow oxygen support.
Every morning starts with frantic calls from friends, family and colleagues asking for a bed, oxygen cylinders or medicines.
The number of people I am able to help is reducing every day as the doctors and officials who could earlier help are no longer available to speak on the phone.
Helplines are not working and the vendors who could earlier help have run out of supplies.
I go to bed with a sense of defeat every night, but then pick myself up and start in the morning again as more and more people call for help.
I can understand their helplessness as I lost a cousin a few days ago in a top hospital in the city. He waited for 18 hours to get a ventilator but the hospital didn't have any.
That's how Delhi is functioning at the moment. Friends are calling friends; social media is awash with desperate pleas for help.
But it's almost impossible to find a hospital bed here now.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 12:23

Gates urges UK to restore aid budget to help global vaccine rollout

Billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates has urged the UK to restore its overseas aid budget as soon as possible, saying it is of "critical importance" in getting vaccines to the developing world.
The Microsoft founder said British voters should be "very proud" of the role their country had played in supporting Gavi - the international vaccine alliance.
However, he said its impact would be diminished unless the commitment to spend 0.7% of national income on aid - which has been cut temporarily due to economic effects of the pandemic - was restored.
"The quicker the UK can get its aid level back up to the 0.7% the better," he told Sky News's Sophy Ridge on Sunday programme.
"It's been the strongest proponent of getting behind vaccines and making sure we eradicate polio and, with the cutbacks, we won't be able to do as much so I hope that gets restored because it is of critical importance."
Gates also expressed confidence that Covid infection levels would be reduced to "very small numbers" by the end of 2022 as vaccines became increasingly available around the world.

UK government looking at what support it can give to India - Truss

The UK government is looking at what support it can offer to India as the country's hospitals struggle to deal with a surge in coronavirus cases, says International Trade Secretary Liz Truss.
She tells the Andrew Marr Show the situation in the country is “terrible”, adding she had spoken to her Indian counterpart last week offering the UK’s support.
“We are looking at what we can do in areas like oxygen. We’re putting together a package to try and help the Indian government and the India populations.
“It is a very, very serious situation.”

Medical staff facing ‘huge’ challenge in India

A doctor at a hospital in India’s capital has described the “harrowing” situation facing Covid patients, their families and the medical staff during the country’s second wave.
Dr Atul Gogia, a consultant at the Sir Ganga Ram hospital in Delhi - which is one of the country's worst-hit areas - told BBC Breakfast: “The hospitals are chock-a-block, the emergencies are full, everybody is working 24-7.”
He said staff were fighting for oxygen beds for their patients and fighting for oxygen supplies to be continuous as they were currently "patchy".
His hospital has more than 500 Covid patients, he says, most of whom require oxygen.
He says there have been signs that the government is getting more oxygen supplies and they have received some in the last day - “but still we need more”.
Asked why so many people were dying, he says India did not have the infrastructure to cater for the huge numbers of coronavirus patients.
Staff are working around the clock, he says, but more health workers are getting infected so it is “a difficult and humongous job, physically, mentally and emotionally”.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 12:28

Thousands of fans to attend Wembley for football cup final

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Some 8,000 spectators will be at Wembley this afternoon for the Carabao Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham - the biggest attendance at an outdoor sports event in the UK since the first lockdown in March last year.
The match, which kicks off at 16:30 BST, is part of the official test programme to work out the best way for big crowds to return to venues.
The final was rescheduled from February with the objective of having "as many supporters in attendance as possible".
A proportion of the tickets have been given to both clubs for the game, while the rest have gone to local residents in Brent and NHS staff.
The match is one of nine events across sports and the arts which are being used to provide "key scientific data and research" into how events can safely re-open to fans in line with the roadmap out of lockdown.
Researchers at the events will "gather evidence associated with different settings and approaches to managing and mitigating transmission risk".

Anti-lockdown scientists call for social distancing to end in June

More than 20 anti-lockdown scientists and academics have written an open letter calling for face masks and social distancing to end in June.
The letter, published in full on the Daily Express website, says more weight should be given to the success of the vaccines and less to what it calls the "theoretical" risk of new variants or a new surge in infections.
It also urges the government to scrap plans for vaccine passports, along with mass community testing, in favour of a more targeted approach.
The government has already announced it hopes to end all legal limits on social contact in England on 21 June at the earliest and the prime minister has said there is nothing in the data to suggest this will not be the case.
But some scientists have suggested people could still be asked to wear face coverings and socially distance for several years as other countries are yet to complete their vaccination programmes.
BBC health correspondent Katharine Da Costa says many of the signatories to the letter had previously called for lockdowns to be abolished in favour of shielding the vulnerable, a strategy strongly criticised by the wider scientific community.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 12:32

Why is India running out of oxygen again?

Janhavee Moole - BBC Marathi

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Relatives of Covid patients have been queuing up in cities to refill cylinders

For anyone who has watched the pandemic unfold here - from doctors to officials to journalists - this feels like déjà vu.
Seven months ago, the country had grappled with a similar oxygen shortage amid a rapid surge in case numbers . But this time, it's much worse.
Typically, healthcare facilities consume about 15% of oxygen supply, leaving the rest for industrial use. But amid India's second wave nearly 90% of the country's oxygen supply - 7,500 metric tonnes daily - is being diverted for medical use, according to Rajesh Bhushan, a senior health official.
That's nearly three times higher than was consumed every day at the peak of the first wave in mid-September last year.
Then, India was adding about 90,000 cases daily. Just two weeks ago, in early April, the single-day spike was around 144,000. Now, the daily caseload has more than doubled to well more than 300,000.
Doctors and epidemiologists believe the deluge of cases is delaying tests and consultation, leading to many people being admitted to hospital when their condition is severe. So the demand for high-flow oxygen - and therefore more oxygen - is higher than it was during the last wave.
Read the full story here.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 13:58

Police charge man with covid symptoms who deliberately coughed on work colleagues & infected 22

The Guardian
A Spanish man with Covid symptoms who coughed on work colleagues and told them “I’m going to give you all the coronavirus” has been charged with intentionally causing injury after allegedly infecting 22 people, AP reports:
Spanish police said their investigation began after a coronavirus outbreak at the company where the 40-year-old man worked on the Mediterranean island of Mallorca.
Days before the outbreak, the man showed Covid symptoms but refused his colleagues’ suggestions to go home and self-isolate, police said in a statement.
After work, and showing no improvement, he went for a PCR test before visiting a gym and returning to work the next day. Though his superiors told him to go home after he allegedly had showed a temperature of 40 degrees C, the man refused.
He walked around his workplace, lowering his face mask and coughing on people, saying “I’m going to infect you all with the coronavirus,” according to police.
At the end of the day, his PCR test came back positive. His colleagues were then tested, with five returning positive results. They in turn infected family members, including three infants, police said. At the gym the man visited, three people tested positive and also infected family members.
None of those infected required hospitalisation, police said.
A judge charged the man, who was not identified by police, and released him on Saturday evening to await trial, Spain’s Europa Press news agency reported.

Western Australia halves allowed international arrivals for the next month

The Guardian
Western Australia’s international arrivals cap for the next month will be halved, officials said on today, as the state is battling a coronavirus outbreak that forced more than two million people into a three-day lockdown from Saturday, Reuters reports:
The lockdown was ordered after a traveller likely became infected while in quarantine in a hotel and unknowingly passed it on to two other people in the community.
Australia closed its borders more than a year ago and allows mostly only its citizens and permanent residents to return. All, except from New Zealand, must undergo two weeks of mandatory hotel quarantine at their own expense.
The hotel quarantine system, together with snap lockdowns and swift tracking limiting coronavirus has helped Australia to keep its Covid numbers low compared with other developed countries, with just over 29,500 cases and 910 deaths.
Western Australia’s Premier Mark McGowan said today that the federal government had agreed to halve the current rate of 1,025 returning travellers per week to Perth for at least a month.
“The high number of returned overseas travellers is putting continued strain and pressure on our hotel quarantine system,” McGowan said at a televised briefing.
On Saturday, he urged the federal government to find new quarantine facilities away from crowded downtown hotels.
With the row escalating between Western Australia and Canberra, the federal government reiterated in a statement over the weekend that it has been working to expand the Howard Springs facility in the Northern Territory.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 14:03

Family donates iPads to hospital after dad's death

The family of a man who died with Covid-19 has expressed their gratitude to the hospital that cared for him with a donation of iPads.
Bharatkumar Shah, 68, spent 16 days in intensive care at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, in January.
During this time his family was unable to visit but said daily video calls with him were "a lifeline".
Since his death on 1 February, the family has raised £5,000 to buy tablets and stereos for the hospital.
"The only communication we had with our dad for the days he was in hospital was through an iPad," said his daughter, Beena Shah.
The family said their father had always "loved to help others" so raising the money after his death had helped them "cope better".

Woman fined £10k over 30th birthday party

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A woman in England has been fined £10,000 after police broke up a 30th birthday party of more than 50 people inside a marquee.
Police received reports of the party in Nottingham, at about 20:30 BST on Friday night.
Officers found the marquee set up at the back of the property "and a large gathering was taking place inside".
Nottinghamshire Police said it "had no choice" but to hand the organiser the large fine.
Under the government's current guidelines in England, two households or groups of up to six people are allowed to socialise in parks and private gardens.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 15:49

New restrictions in Japan as Olympics near

A third coronavirus state of emergency has come into effect in the Japanese capital, Tokyo, and three other areas, just three months ahead of the scheduled start of the Olympic Games.
Under the curbs, set to last for about two weeks, major commercial facilities like department stores will close, as well as restaurants, bars, and karaoke parlours serving alcohol.
Restaurants that do not serve alcohol are being told to close early and companies are being asked to make arrangements for people to work remotely. Schools will remain open.
The measures also apply to Kyoto, Hyogo and Osaka.
They were brought in to battle a surge in infections driven by Covid-19 variants, but there are doubts it will be sufficient.
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has come under fire for the slow pace of the vaccination programme - just over 1% of Japan's population has received a first dose.
Despite the surge in infections, the government has insisted that the delayed 2020 Olympics will go ahead in July.

Call for more police protection after officers injured at protest

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A police leader has said officers deserve greater protection after eight of them were injured during an anti-lockdown protest in central London on Saturday.
Demonstrators hurled bottles as police attempted to disperse the crowds in Hyde Park following a march and rally.
The Met said two officers were taken to hospital, although their injuries are not believed to be serious.
Home Secretary Priti Patel condemned the "senseless violence" and wished the injured officers "a speedy recovery".
Ken Marsh, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation, said "the safety of our police officers should be top of the agenda".
"Police officers are human beings who go out every day to keep people safe.
"Many people seem to have forgotten that right now, but we will keep reminding them."
Five people were arrested for offences, including assault on police and public order offences.
"Peaceful protest may well be the cornerstone of democracy - and police officers have a role in facilitating that - but the scenes we saw in Hyde Park yesterday of a thin blue line of brave and sadly bloodied police officers coming under attack from thugs were anything but peaceful," said Marsh.
Read more

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 16:07

In pictures: UK's vaccination drive in action

The Department of Health has released a series of photos documenting the NHS's largest-ever vaccination programme.
Documentary photographers and filmmakers set out across the UK in February and March to capture the immunisation programme in action.
Among the people they photographed was Dr Gavin Chestnutt, a GP who took his vaccine supplies on the ferry to Rathlin Island - Northern Ireland's most northerly point - to immunise the community there and ensure the elderly population did not have to travel in bad weather.

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Dr Gavin Chestnutt, who is also a part-time farmer, was photographed vaccinating a 92-year-old man in his back garden

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Dozens of sites across the country have been used as vaccine centres, including Salisbury Cathedral

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Newbury Racecourse is among the sporting venues to host a vaccine centre

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 16:37

EU says it is ready to provide oxygen and medicines to India

Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the EU Commission, has tweeted that the bloc is "ready to support" India as the country battles a surge in coronavirus infections.
Just under 350,000 new cases were reported in India in the past 24 hours.
Many hospitals are full and are refusing new admissions because of uncertainty over oxygen supplies.
"We stand in full solidarity with the Indian people," wrote von der Leyen.
Janez Lenarcic, European Commissioner for crisis management, tweeted that the EU's emergency response coordination centre is "ready to provide urgently needed oxygen and medicine".
There have also been offers of support from countries including the UK and the US.

Breaking News 

UK deaths rise by 11

A further 11 people in the UK have died within 28 days of a positive test for coronavirus, according to the latest government figures .
There were also 1,712 new cases registered.
This compares to 32 deaths and 2.061 cases on Saturday.

Breaking News 

More than 12.5m people in the UK now fully vaccinated

The daily figures also show more than 12.5m people in the UK have now received both doses of the vaccine.
Some 12,587,116 have received two doses while 33,666,638 have received a first dose.
In England those aged 45 or over are already being invited to book an appointment, while in Scotland this applies to those aged 50 or over.
Northern Ireland has now opened bookings for the 35 to 39 age group - and one health board in Wales is offering the vaccine to those aged 30 to 39 - although most are still vaccinating people in their 40s and 50s.

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 17:59

UK government to send medical equipment to India this week

The UK is to send medical equipment, including 495 oxygen concentrators, 120 non-invasive ventilators and 20 manual ventilators, to India this week, the government has said.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the first tranche of supplies "is on its way" and would arrive in Delhi early on Tuesday.
He said the UK stood "side by side with India as a friend and partner".
It comes as the number of new coronavirus infections in India reached another record high for the fourth day in a row.
The assistance package, funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, includes ventilators and oxygen concentrators from surplus stocks after consultation between the government, the NHS and UK suppliers and manufacturers.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said he was "hugely grateful to those who have worked hard to make this initial delivery".
"We are determined to support the people of India through this very difficult time," he added.
The UK is working closely with the government of India to work out what further assistance it can provide in the coming days, the government said.
“We have all got to work together to tackle Covid-19," said Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

Russia records 8,780 new coronavirus cases today

Russia reported 8,780 new coronavirus cases today, including 2,526 in Moscow, taking the national tally to 4,762,569 since the start of the pandemic, Reuters reports.
The coronavirus crisis centre said 332 more deaths of coronavirus patients had been confirmed in the past 24 hours, taking the national death toll to 108,232.
The federal statistics agency has kept a separate count and reported a toll of more than 225,000 from April last year to February.

India reports a further 349,691 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours

India’s number of cases surged by 349,691 in the past 24 hours.
Its crematoriums and burial grounds are being overwhelmed by the devastating new surge of infections, AP reports:
Burial grounds in the Indian capital New Delhi are running out of space and bright, glowing funeral pyres light up the night sky in other badly hit cities.
In central Bhopal city, some crematoriums have increased their capacity from dozens of pyres to more than 50. Yet, officials say, there are still hours-long waits.
At the city’s Bhadbhada Vishram Ghat crematorium, workers said they cremated more than 110 people on Saturday, even as government figures in the entire city of 1.8 million put the total number of deaths at just 10.
“The virus is swallowing our city’s people like a monster,” said Mamtesh Sharma, an official at the site.
The unprecedented rush of bodies has forced the crematorium to skip individual ceremonies and exhaustive rituals that Hindus believe release the soul from the cycle of rebirth.
“We are just burning bodies as they arrive,” said Sharma. “It is as if we are in the middle of a war.”
The head gravedigger at New Delhi’s largest Muslim cemetery, where 1,000 people have been buried during the pandemic, said more bodies are arriving now than last year. “I fear we will run out of space very soon,” said Mohammad Shameem.
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People cremate the bodies of at a crematorium ground in New Delhi, yesterday Photograph: Danish Siddiqui/Reuters

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Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 18:04

What's been happening today?

We're soon going to be bringing our live page to a pause. But before we do, here is a round-up of some of the main coronavirus stories on Sunday.


That's it from the coronavirus live page for today - thanks for joining us. We'll be back on Monday morning.

The writers today were Katie Wright, Victoria Lindrea and Hugo Bachega.
The page was edited by Alex Therrien.

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Coronavirus - 25th April 2021 Empty Anti-lockdown protests turn violent in London with eight police officers injured and two hospitalised

Post by Kitkat Sun Apr 25 2021, 19:05

Anti-lockdown protests turn violent in London with eight police officers injured and two hospitalised
Jack Beresford - Irish Post

Anti-lockdown protests in London descended into violence on Saturday with at least eight police officers injured in the unfolding chaos.

Two officers were hospitalised following the unrest though they are not thought to be in a life-threatening condition.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed that five arrests were also made during the "Unite for Freedom" anti-lockdown demonstration on Oxford Street this past Saturday for a variety of offences, including assault on police.

Thousands of protesters marched on the English capital, in part, to voice their opposition to the proposed use of vaccine passports in the UK.

Vaccine passports would allow the public to prove that they have received a COVID-19 vaccination, which supporters believe will allow major events to resume.

However, those opposed to the idea believe it will result in discrimination against those who have not been vaccinated.

While vaccine passports were reason to remonstrate for some of those in attendance, others attended the protest to voice their concerns over the Covid-19 vaccines and continued lockdown restrictions.

Demonstrators gathered with banners and placards featuring slogans like “No To Vaccine Passports” and “You don’t need proof to know truth.”

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(Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images)

Several also drew criticism online for attempting to draw parallels between the ongoing vaccination of the UK public and the treatment of Jews in 1940s Germany.
A number of demonstrators were pictured wearing yellow Star of David-style badges repurposed to protest against the lockdown restrictions while a banner emblazoned with the words “Covid-19 Vaccine Holocaust” was also spotted.
The demonstrations in London, which featured several notable celebrities including former actor turned right wing pundit Laurence Fox, served as a stark contrast to events in India, where the Covid-19 death toll continues to rise at an alarming rate.
Though the London protest began peacefully enough, things turned ugly as the day continued with running battles breaking out between a small contingent of the demonstrators and police on the scene at Hyde Park.
Protestors launched bottles and other objects at police while they attempted to disperse the crowds gathered.
One of the most striking images from the day’s demonstrations was that of a female police officer with a bloody head-wound.

Reflecting on the disorder witnessed, John Apter, national chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, tweeted: “These officers are just doing a job, they’re somebody’s son, daughter they’re mums and dads.

“To be targeted in the way they are says a lot about the society we’ve become.

“I will continue to do my best to support them but I need Government to do more, much more.”

The protest came two weeks after the easing of lockdown restrictions began in England with non-essential retail reopening and pubs and restaurants resuming outdoor service.

Gyms, swimming pools, zoos and nail salons have also reopened along with hairdressers and other nonessential services.

Despite the return to some form of normality Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for the public to “behave responsibly”.

It comes as the UK continues its rollout of vaccinations against Covid-19, with over 50% of the country’s population now inoculated against the coronavirus.

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