Germany warns against travel to virus-hit Spain regions: Live | News

Ultimate Lead Gen
    • Germany‘s foreign ministry has advised holidaymakers not to travel to several Spanish regions including Catalonia, home to Barcelona, that have seen  coronavirus  infection rates rise.

       

 

    • The world’s biggest COVID-19 vaccine trial got under way on Monday with the first of 30,000 planned volunteers helping to test shots created by the US government along with pharmaceutical company Moderna.

 

    • Nearly 16.5 million people around the world have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, some 9.6 million patients have recovered, and more than 654,000 have died, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

 

Here are the latest updates:

Tuesday, July 28

12:30 GMT – Real Madrid forward Mariano Diaz tests positive for COVID-19

Real Madrid forward Mariano Diaz has tested positive for COVID-19, the Spanish champions said, casting doubt on his participation in their Champions League tie at Manchester City next week.

Real said tests were conducted on the squad on Monday and that though Diaz was in “perfect health”, he would be self-isolating at home.

12:00 GMT – Coronavirus sharpening hunger in southern Africa, says bloc

Nearly 45 million people in 13 countries in southern Africa are food-insecure as a result of drought and flood and the impact of coronavirus, the region’s bloc has said.

The tally has risen almost 10 percent over last year, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) said in a report.

“Common climate-induced shocks… economic challenges and poverty have been further exacerbated by the devastating impact of COVID-19 on communities,” it said. Coronavirus restrictions have badly affected business activity, jobs and remittances.

11:45 GMT – Madrid tightens coronavirus restrictions

The Madrid regional government is making the wearing of face masks mandatory in all public areas, limiting how many people can gather in one place and targeting young people in a drive to stamp out new outbreaks of the coronavirus.

Regional government head Isabel Diaz Ayuso announced that no more than 10 people can be present at private gatherings.

Ayuso also said an information campaign will focus on young people, who are largely blamed for spreading the coronavirus through their social life. She said young people “have it in their hands to reverse the trend.”

11:30 GMT – Greece to open ports to cruise ships on Saturday

Greece has announced it will open six of its big ports to tourist cruise ships starting on Saturday, after they were banned because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“All cruisers are welcome in Greece,” Tourism Minister Haris Theocharis said on Tuesday. The country is to open the ports in Athens, Rhodes, Heraklion on Crete, Volos, Corfu and Katakolon, he added.

11:15 GMT – No indication new coronavirus is seasonal: WHO

The spread of the novel coronavirus does not appear to be impacted by seasonality, the World Health Organization has said, warning against false beliefs that summer is safer.

“Season does not seem to be affecting the transmission of this virus,” WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris told reporters in a virtual briefing.

She pointed out that some of the hardest-hit countries are currently in the midst of different season.

11:00 GMT – Barcelona’s soaring COVID-19 cases cause concern

Infection rates have been soaring in Spain with more than one thousand new cases reported on a daily basis in Catalonia.

It is feared the regional capital, Barcelona, will become the epicentre of the virus.

Al Jazeera’s Marta Herrero reports from Barcelona:

10:45 GMT – South Asia animal sellers go online for Eid al-Adha

Millions of goats, sheep and cattle are slaughtered annually during Eid al-Adha – the festival of sacrifice – one of two major holy days observed by Muslims across the world, including some 600 million in South Asia.

The pandemic has, however, badly hit India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, which have shut or heavily restricted major markets, while fears of catching the virus are keeping customers away ahead of the main festival on Saturday.

Faced with deserted markets, livestock breeders and traders have turned to websites, apps and social media to showcase their animals.

Read more here.

animal sellers online

Muhammad Naeem uploads a picture of goats on his website ahead of Eid al-Adha in Islamabad, Pakistan [Aamir Qureshi/AFP]

10:30 GMT – Iran registers a record 235 coronavirus deaths in 24-hour period

Iran has reported 235 new deaths from the novel coronavirus, a record toll for a single day in the Middle East’s hardest-hit country.

“We have lost 235 of our compatriots due to COVID-19 in the past 24 hours,” taking the overall toll to 16,147, said health ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari.

10:15 GMT – PM Khan warns of possible Eid al-Adha coronavirus spike

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has warned citizens to continue to strictly follow government guidelines on limiting interactions, warning of a possible new surge in cases after the Islamic holy day of Eid al-Adha later this week.

Khan’s warning came as the country registered its lowest single-day rise in cases in almost three months, according to the latest government data.

Read more here.

Pakistan Eid coronavirus

People wear protective masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus at a cattle market set up for Eid al-Adha in Peshawar, Pakistan [Muhammad Sajjad/AP]

10:00 GMT – Australia sends medical team to Papua New Guinea as cases rise

Australia said it was sending a medical team to help Papua New Guinea fight an outbreak of coronavirus after the neighbouring country experienced a rise in infections.

The Pacific nation, which had escaped the infection levels of its neighbours since the crisis escalated in March, has recorded an increase in new cases in the past week, according to data analysis firm Worldometer.

There were 62 confirmed virus cases as of late Tuesday, up from just eight infections 11 days ago.

09:30 GMT – Spain lockdown leaves one million jobless

The coronavirus epidemic has destroyed the jobs of over a million Spaniards, but with lockdowns preventing them from looking for work, they were excluded from the unemployment count, data showed.

Figures published by the National Statistics Institute (INE) showed the number of unemployed rose by only 55,000 between April and June to 3.4 million.

That pushed the unemployment rate to 15.3 percent from 14.4 percent in the first quarter.

Spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Barcelona

The number of unemployed rose by only 55,000 between April and June to 3.4 million [File: Reuters]

09:15 GMT – IMF approves $4.3bn emergency loan to South Africa

The International Monetary Fund has approved a $4.3bn emergency loan to South Africa as it reels under the coronavirus pandemic.

The country has the world’s fifth largest virus caseload, and confirmed cases are approaching half a million.

The IMF said South Africa was seeing a “sharp economic contraction,” though authorities responded swiftly to this latest crisis. The government weeks ago announced a historic $26bn economic relief package.

 

09:00 GMT – Rise in German virus numbers of ‘great concern’: health agency

The rapid rise in Germany’s coronavirus numbers is very worrying, the country’s Robert Koch Institute for disease control said Tuesday, urging citizens to keep their distance and wear face masks.

“We must prevent that the virus once again spreads rapidly and uncontrollably,” RKI head Lothar Wieler told reporters.

“The latest developments in the number of COVID-19 cases is of great concern to me and all of us at the RKI,” he said.

Separately, Germany’s foreign ministry updated its travel advisory, recommending against travel to three regions in northern Spain grappling with renewed outbreaks.

Germany

The head of Germany’s Robert Koch Institute, Lothar Wieler, addresses a news conference on the country’s situation amid the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, in Berlin.[AFP]

08:45 GMT – Kenya extends coronavirus curfew, restricts alcohol sales

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has extended a nightly curfew and banned alcohol sales in restaurants as part of a bid to halt a steep rise in coronavirus cases.

In a stern televised address to the nation on Monday, Kenyatta said a countrywide curfew from 9pm to 4am will remain in place for another 30 days and that “there shall be no sale of alcoholic beverages or drinks in eateries and restaurants” over the same period.

Read more here.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Nairobi

Kenyatta asked police to enforce the curfew rule regardless of who was found breaking it [Presidential Press Service/Handout via Reuters]

08:30 GMT – Nissan forecasts $6.4bn annual net loss as virus bites

Crisis-hit Japanese automaker Nissan has warned of a massive $6.4bn net loss for the current fiscal year as it reels from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Nissan, which had delayed an annual forecast because of ongoing uncertainty, issued the warning as it reported a first-quarter net loss of 285.6 billion yen ($2.7bn) on plunging sales.

08:15 GMT – Indonesia reports 1,748 new infections

Indonesia has reported 1,748 new coronavirus infections, bringing its tally to 102,051 confirmed cases overall, Health Ministry data showed.

The number of deaths in the Southeast Asian nation related to COVID-19 rose by 63, bringing the total to 4,901.

08:00 GMT – Taiwan probes possible first local virus case in one month as imported cases rise

Taiwan is investigating its first possible local coronavirus infection in more than a month, a Thai man who tested positive last week, as the island also faces a rise in cases brought from overseas.

Taiwan’s early response was effective in keeping the pandemic at bay, with just 467 infections and seven deaths. Most of the cases have been imported and have recovered.

Until the Thai man’s positive test, the island had not seen a local case of coronavirus infection since June 24.

07:45 GMT – Pakistan’s daily COVID-19 infections drop below 1,000

The number of infections has dropped below 1,000 for the first time in three months in Pakistan.

The country counted 936 new cases reported in the last 24 hours throughout the country of 220 million people

Dr Zafar Mirza, special assistant to Prime Minister Imran Khan, tweeted praise for Khan urging Pakistanis to wear masks as the “most effective practice to reduce the transmission of the disease.”

07:30 GMT – Russia’s coronavirus cases surpass 820,000

Russia has reported 5,395 new cases of the novel coronavirus, bringing its nationwide tally to 823,515, the fourth largest in the world.

Russia’s coronavirus taskforce said 150 people had died over the last 24 hours, pushing the official death toll in the country of around 145 million people to 13,504.

07:15 GMT – South Africa nearing half-million virus cases

South Africa is closing in on a half-million confirmed coronavirus cases as the country posted nearly 300 deaths in a single day.

South Africa now has 452,529 cases and 7,067 deaths, making up more than half the reported cases on the African continent. It has the fifth highest caseload in the world.

Like many others, the country has struggled with trying to ease lockdown restrictions and then seeing cases rise. But businesses have expressed frustration as unemployment is now above 30 percent and likely to keep increasing.

07:00 GMT – France to reconsider plans to build fourth terminal at Paris airport

The French government will reconsider plans to build a fourth terminal at the Paris Charles de Gaulle airport because of the impact of the coronavirus crisis, Transport Minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari has said.

“The project to receive 40 million more passengers by 2030 is probably no longer justified as it was planned,” Djebbari said on Europe 1 radio.

He said French airports would still need investment for upgrades and would have to make sure that new types of planes, such as hydrogen-powered planes, can land.

06:45 GMT – Police arrest leader of Sydney protests against racism

Police officers in Sydney have arrested a leader of an anti-racism protest and shut down the demonstration before it started after courts ruled the gathering in downtown was illegal due to the coronavirus pandemic threat.

Organiser Paddy Gibson was among six people arrested in a park known as The Domain before the rally was due to start at noon. Two police officers were photographed leading a defiant Gibson away.

Police outnumbered protesters. Officers told demonstrators to move on as they arrived and the area was cleared 15 minutes before the scheduled start.

06:30 GMT – Vietnam locks down its 3rd-largest city as virus cases grow

Vietnam has locked down its third-largest city for two weeks after 15 cases of COVID-19 were found in a hospital, the government said.

Public transport into and out of the central city of Da Nang was cancelled. Over the weekend, thousands of mostly Vietnamese tourists had to end their summer holidays in the popular beach destination. The lockdown has dealt a hard blow to the tourism industry, which was just being revived after earlier coronavirus cases mostly subsided at the end of April.


Hi, this is Elizabeth Melimopoulos in Doha taking over the live updates from my colleague  Kate Mayberry  in Kuala Lumpur.


05:15 GMT – Najib crowd raises concerns about social distancing in Malaysia

Hundreds of people turned out at the Kuala Lumpur court on Tuesday, as a judge prepared to deliver his verdict in the 1MDB-corruption case involving former prime minister Najib Razak.

While many were wearing masks, not all were, and there was no physical distancing despite police announcements urging people to keep their distance.

05:00 GMT – Red Cross urges vigilance in the Philippines

The Red Cross in the Philippines is urging people to be more vigilant as COVID-19 cases in the country jump by more than a thousand each day, and an increasing number of hospitals are reporting they can no longer accommodate more patients

More than 80,000 people have been diagnosed with COVID-19, with more than 42,000 cases confirmed in July.

“The biggest threat is complacency as we are far from being out of the woods,” Philippine Red Chairman Richard Gordon said in a statement. “We need to act like we already have the virus and keep wearing face masks and practising proper handwashing and physical distancing.”

04:10 GMT – Japan ignores ridicule to press ahead with ‘Abenomask’

They might have been widely ridiculed as ineffective and a waste of money when first announced, but Japan is pushing ahead with plans to give 80 million “Abenomasks” to nursing homes and daycare centres.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters: “The masks are relatively low cost and help curb demand.”

Commercially-made masks are now readily available, even as cases climb, in Japan.

02:50 GMT – Australia’s Morrison cuts short interstate tour because of coronavirus

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has cut short an interstate tour because of what he says is a “very complex” outbreak of coronavirus in nursing homes in the southern city of Melbourne, likely transmitted to them through the people working in the facilities.

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews has said 769 cases have been linked to nursing homes.

“I cannot stand here and tell you that I have confidence that staff and management across a number of private-sector aged care facilities are able to provide the care that is appropriate to keep their residents safe,” Andrews told reporters.

02:30 GMT – Vietnam suspends Danang flights

Vietnam has suspended all flights in and out of the central city of Danang after a sudden spike in coronavirus cases there, the first community infections since April.

Flights will be suspended for 15 days, and train services have also been halted.

An evacuation plan for local visitors to the popular tourist destination was announced yesterday.

Vietnam Danang

A staff member from Vietnam’s Centre of Disease Control assists passengers at Danang international airport on July 27 2020 [Hoang Khanh/AFP]

02:15 GMT – China reports 68 new cases, all but four locally transmitted

Mainland China has reported 68 new cases of coronavirus, 64 of them locally transmitted.

Fifty-seven of the local cases were diagnosed in the far western region of Xinjiang, according to state media.

No deaths from COVID-19 were reported anywhere in the country.

02:05 GMT – Australia’s Victoria reports 384 new cases

The Australian state of Victoria has reported 384 new cases of coronavirus and six deaths in the past 24 hours.

On Monday, the state reported a record 532 cases.

00:30 GMT – Peru says more than 900 women, girls feared dead

Peru says more than 900 girls and women are feared to have died as a result of domestic violence during the country’s extended coronavirus lockdown; some 70 percent of those missing were under the age of 18.

“During the quarantine from March 16 to June 30, 915 women in Peru were reported missing,” and feared dead, Elionar Revollar, the head of the women’s rights office of the National Ombudsman was quoted as saying by AFP.

The number of women reported missing each day has risen to eight compared with five before the pandemic.

00:15 GMT – UN warns on wasting, stunting

The UN says nearly seven million more children will suffer stunting as a result of the coronavirus pandemic affecting food supplies.

Writing in The Lancet, a team of experts modelled the impact on 118 poor and middle-income countries and found the prevalence of moderate or severe wasting among children under five would increase by 14.3 percent, or an extra 6.7 million cases.

Wasting occurs when the body is so malnourished that muscles and fat begin to disappear.

—-

Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m Kate Mayberry in Kuala Lumpur.

Read all the updates from yesterday (July 27) here.

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