International

WHO to launch second Solidarity Trial for coronavirus vaccine

THE World Health Organisation (WHO), on Friday, said that it is going to launch a second protocol for the Solidarity Trial soon. “WHO would soon be launching a second protocol for the Solidarity Trial that will help establish incidence and prevalence of infection and the future behaviour of the virus,” Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director of WHO South-East Asia said in a press statement. At least three South-East Asia member countries, including India, Indonesia and Thailand have already signed ..

Netanyahu quarantined for 2nd time after Health Minister tests +ve for virus

ISRAELI Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday went into isolation for the second time in a week after his Health Minister Yaakov Litzman tested positive for the novel coronavirus. According to the Prime Minister’s Office, Netanyahu, 70, will remain in self-quarantine until April 8 as he had frequent meetings with Litzman, reports Xinhua news agency. The move follows the recommendation of Netanyahu’s personal doctor and guidelines of the Health Ministry, the Office added...

Coronavirus can travel 27 ft, stay in air for hours: MIT researcher

STAYING six feet away from others may not work, an MIT researcher has warned - saying the coronavirus can rather travel 27 feet and can linger for hours. The study was conducted by MIT associate professor Lydia Bourouiba, who has researched the dynamics of coughs and sneezes for years. It was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Bourouiba warned that the current social-distancing guidelines to stay six feet from others are based on outdated models from the 1930s, reported ..

North Korea insists it is free of coronavirus

NORTH Korea remains totally free of the coronavirus, a senior health official in Pyongyang has insisted, despite mounting scepticism overseas as confirmed global infections near one million. The already isolated, nuclear-armed North quickly shut down its borders after the virus was first detected in neighbouring China in January, and imposed strict containment measures. Pak Myong Su, Director of the anti-epidemic department of the North’s Central Emergency Anti-epidemic Headquarters, insisted that ..

World faces food crisis in wake of coronavirus: UN, WTO

THE heads of three global agencies warned on Wednesday of the risk of a worldwide “food shortage” if authorities fail to manage the ongoing coronavirus crisis properly. Many Governments around the world have put their populations on lockdown causing severe slow-downs in international trade and food supply chains. Panic buying by people going into confinement has already demonstrated the fragility of supply chains as supermarket shelves emptied in many countries...

COVID-19 global death toll crosses 43,082

THE worldwide number of officially confirmed fatalities from the novel coronavirus rose to 43,082 on Wednesday, according to a tally compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT from official sources. More than 865,970 declared cases have been registered in 186 countries and territories since the epidemic first emerged in China in December. Of these cases, at least 172,500 are now considered recovered...

Scientists identify 8 strains of coronavirus

EVEN as researchers across the world work overtime to understand evolution of the virus that causes the disease COVID-19, scientists have identified at least eight strains of coronavirus doing the rounds globally. Over 2,000 genetic sequences of the virus submitted from laboratories across the world to the open-source project Nextstrain.org show how the virus is migrating into new subtypes...

‘About 11 mn could be driven into poverty in East Asia and Pacific’

ABOUT 11 million people could be driven into poverty in East Asia and the Pacific as a result of the coronavirus pandemic that has impacted over 7,80,000 people and killed more than 37,000 globally, the World Bank has warned. The Washington-based global lender, in a report released on Monday, said that prior projections had estimated that nearly 35 million people would escape poverty in East Asia and the Pacific in 2020, including over 25 million in China alone...

World to face recession, India, China likely exception: UN

UNITED NATIONS, THE world economy will go into recession this year with a predicted loss of trillions of dollars of global income due to the coronavirus pandemic, spelling serious trouble for developing countries with the likely exception of India and China, according to a latest UN trade report. With two-thirds of the world’s population..

COVID-19 global death toll crosses 38,466

THE worldwide number of officially confirmed fatalities from the novel coronavirus rose to 38,466 on Tuesday, according to a tally compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT from official sources. More than 791,000 declared cases have been registered in 185 countries and territories since the epidemic first emerged in China in December. Of these cases, at least 163,300 are now considered recovered. The tallies, using data collected by AFP offices from national authorities and information from the World Health Organizatio..

Global COVID-19 death toll 35,000; cases 7,40,000

THE worldwide number of officially confirmed fatalities from the novel coronavirus rose to 35,000 on Monday, according to a tally compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT from official sources. More than 35,000 people have died worldwide from the coronavirus pandemic since it emerged late last year in China, most of them in Europe, according to an AFP tally at 1615 GMT Monday using official figures. In total, 35,905 people have died, including 26,076 in Europe. Italy has the most deaths with 11,591, following ..

COVID-19 global death toll crosses 31,000

THE worldwide number of officially confirmed fatalities from the novel coronavirus rose to 31,412 on Sunday, according to a tally compiled by AFP from official sources. More than two-thirds of the deaths from coronavirus have now been recorded in Europe. Over 667,090 declared cases have been registered in 183 countries and territories since the epidemic first emerged in China in December. Of these cases, at least 134,700 are now considered recovered...

Italy, Spain suffer record deaths as infection surges

ITALY has logged a shocking spike in its already staggering coronavirus death toll, with officials warning the peak of the crisis was still days away, as global infection rate surges relentlessly upwards. More than 6,00,000 cases of the new coronavirus have been officially recorded around the world since the outbreak of the epidemic, according to an AFP tally at 1045 GMT on Saturday. There were 6,05,010 cases of infection with 27,982 deaths in 183 countries and territories...

Modi, Putin discuss humanitarian issues

PRIME Minister Narendra Modi held a telephonic conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday and discussed issues including those pertaining to health, medicine, humanitarian issues, and global economy, amid coronavirus pandemic. “The two leaders agreed on urther consultation and cooperation inadequately..

Spain overtakes China virus toll with 3,434 deaths

SPAIN’S coronavirus death toll overtook that of China on Wednesday, rising to 3,434 after 738 people died over the past 24 hours, the Government said. Across the world, only Italy now has a higher death toll than that of Spain. In China, where the virus emerged late last year, 3,281 people have died. The spiralling number of deaths came as Spain entered the 11th day of an unprecedented lockdown to try and rein in the COVID-19 epidemic that has now infected 47,610 people, the Health Ministry said...

25 worshippers massacred in Kabul gurudwara attack

AT LEAST 25 worshippers were killed and eight others injured when heavily armed suicide bombers blasted their way into a prominent gurudwara on Wednesday in the heart of Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul, in one of the deadliest attacks on the minority Sikh community in the strife-torn country. The Islamic State (IS) terror group, which has targeted Sikhs before in Afghanistan, claimed responsibility for the attack on the gurudwara in Shor Bazar area at about 07:45 (local time) as 150 worshippers were ..

Over 10,000 COVID-19 cases reported in single day in US, total 43,700

OVER 10,000 confirmed coronavirus cases were reported in a single day in the US, raising the number of COVID-19 patients to 43,700, as President Donald Trump signed an executive order to prevent hoarding of vital medical supplies and personal protective equipment. The US also for the first time registered over 130 deaths in a day due to coronavirus, taking the total number of fatalities to 550 by Monday night. Till Monday, more than 43,700 confirmed cases of coronavirus were reported in the United ..

COVID-19 global death toll passes 15,000

THE number of deaths around the world from the novel coronavirus cases stood at 15,189, according to a tally compiled by AFP on Monday from official sources. More than 3,41,300 declared cases have been registered in 174 countries and territories since the epidemic first emerged in China in December. The tallies, using data collected by AFP offices from national authorities and information from the World Health Organization (WHO), likely reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections. Many ..

Global coronavirus death toll at 13,444

THE number of novel coronavirus cases globally stood at 308,130 with 13,444 deaths, across 170 countries and territories at 1100 GMT on Sunday, according to a tally compiled by AFP from official sources. Since 1900 GMT on Saturday, there were 1,702 new deaths reported and 28,674 new cases globally. The tallies, using data collected by AFP offices from national authorities and information from the World Health Organisation (WHO), likely reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections, with ..

Italy calls in military to enforce lockdown as 627 die in one day

ITALY called in the military to enforce the lockdown on Friday as officials announced 627 new deaths in 24 hours, the largest single-day toll in any country since the coronavirus outbreak began. Desperate scenes have unfolded in the north of the country, particularly the hard-hit Lombardy region where infections first exploded last month, as hospitals struggle to treat thousands of cases, CNN reported. Chinese medical experts helping Italy deal with the crisis have said restrictions imposed in the ..

Curiosity Mars rover takes selfie during record climb

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover recently set a record for the steepest terrain it’s ever climbed and in the process, took a selfie, capturing the scene just below ‘Greenheugh pediment which is a broad sheet of rock that sits atop a hill. In front of the rover is a hole it drilled while sampling a bedrock target called “Hutton.” The entire selfie is a 360-degree panorama stitched together from 86 images relayed to Earth, NASA said in a statement on Saturday...

World Bank, ADB give USD 588 million to Pak to fight coronavirus pandemic

ISLAMABADTHE World Bank and the Asian Development Bank have committed to providing USD 588 million to Pakistan for its emergency response to fight the coronavirus and to address the socio-economic impact of the pandemic, a media report said on Friday. A health official checks the body temperature of a burqa-clad woman passenger amid concerns over the spread of coronavirus at the Lahore Railway station in Pakistan on Friday. (AFP)  According to an official statement, the World Bank ..

Indian mission in UK offers help in arranging accommodation for stranded citizens

LONDONTHE Indian High Commission in London is offering assistance with organising accommodation for Indian nationals stranded in the UK in light of India’s ban on travellers from the UK and Europe over coronavirus pandemic.The mission had already set up an email system for Indian passport holders to get in touch with details of their situation and has continued to field hundreds of calls and social media messages from Indian professionals and students desperate to return home. “High Commission ..

Coronavirus death toll crosses 8,000 worldwide

THE total number of deaths due to coronavirus across the world crossed the 8,000 mark on Wednesday. According to worldometers.info, the total number of deaths across the globe were recorded at 8,270, out of 204,669 total cases...

US stocks rebound, oil drifts below USD 30

US STOCKS rebounded on Tuesday following Wall Street’s sharpest daily drop in more than three decades, while equities elsewhere wobbled as Governments and Central Banks scramble to try and calm the coronavirus panic. Meanwhile oil prices drifted below USD 30 per barrel, and the dollar bounced back from heavy losses against the euro on Monday...

Coronavirus in China ‘almost ceased to end’: Medical expert

THE deadly coronavirus which brought China to a grinding halt for about three months has “almost ceased to end” but a final judgement would be made after a month, a top Chinese medical expert heading the health teams at the virus epicentre Wuhan said on Monday. Cao Wei, Deputy Director and Associate Chief Physician of the Department of infectious diseases of Peking Union Medical College Hospital, also said that no data has been found to indicate the relationship between the novel coronavirus and the ..

World tightens controls to fight coronavirus

CAFES, shops and restaurants shut down across France and Spain on Sunday and travellers faced chaos at US airports as Governments stepped up their fight against the coronavirus pandemic which has now reportedly killed more than 6,000. France ordered the closure of all non-essential businesses, while Spain went a step further and banned people from leaving home except to go to work, get medical care or buy food. Cases also spiked in Germany and sources told AFP that the Government planned to shut its ..

Putin extends his time in power to 2036

RUSSIAS Lower House of Parliament on Wednesday gave its final approval to a series of constitutional reforms that could scrap the two-term Presidential limit and allow Vladimir Putin to extend his time in power into the 2030s. Having alternated between President and Prime Minister since 2000, Putin has given his backing to a reform that would make him eligible for two more six-year terms in power come the 2024 elections. The measure means he could serve until 2036, Efe news reported. Russian Presidents ..

Ghani, Abdullah declare themselves as Afghanistan President, both take oath

AFGHANISTAN’S rival leaders were each sworn in as President in separate ceremonies on Monday, throwing plans for negotiations with the Taliban into chaos and creating a dilemma for the United States as it figures out how to move its peace deal with the Taliban forward. The US-Taliban deal signed just over a week ago was touted as Washington’s effort to end 18 years of war in Afghanistan and was seen by many Afghans as the best opportunity yet for bringing an end to relentless wars...

Ten people killed after hotel used as quarantine facility collapses in China

TEN people were killed after a hotel used as a quarantine facility amid the coronavirus outbreak collapsed in south east China’s Fujian province, official media reported on Sunday. Around 71 people were trapped in the hotel that collapsed on Saturday in Quanzhou city of the province, state-run Xinhua news agency reported. The hotel was used to quarantine and observe people who had come to the province during the novel coronavirus prevention and control and had come in contact with the virus patients. ..

World economy may shrink because of virus: Watchdog

A GLOBAL agency says the spreading new virus could make the world economy shrink this quarter, for the first time since the international financial crisis more than a decade ago. The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development says on Monday in a special report on the impact of the virus that the world economy is still expected to grow overall this year and rebound next year...

Muhyiddin Yassin to be new Malaysian Prime Minister

Muhyiddin will be sworn in today FORMER Home Affairs Minister Muhyiddin Yassin will be sworn in on Sunday as the eighth Prime Minister of Malaysia, the National Palace said in a statement on Saturday following a week of political power struggles. The surprise announcement from the Comptroller of the Royal Household, Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin, said the King had agreed to appoint Muhyiddin as premier after receiving a list of nominees from party leaders and independent MPs, and deeming that he may have ..

US, Taliban sign historic deal on Afghanistan’s future

THE United States signed a landmark deal with the Taliban on Saturday, laying out a timetable for a full troop withdrawal from Afghanistan within 14 months as it seeks an exit from its longest-ever war. The agreement is expected to lead to a dialogue between the Taliban and the Kabul Government that, if successful, could ultimately see an end to the grinding 18-year conflict. Taliban fighter-turned-dealmaker Mullah Baradar signed the accord alongside Washington’s chief negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad, ..

33 Turkish soldiers killed in Syria after airstrikes

TURKEY warned on Friday it was opening the gates for refugees to flee to Europe after an air strike blamed on Damascus killed 33 Turkish soldiers in Syria. The international community voiced fears of a rapidly-rising risk of escalation after the attack by Russian-backed Syrian forces in the province of Idlib, where President Bashar al-Assad is waging a bloody campaign to oust rebels from their last holdout. The deadly bombardment has added to weeks of growing tensions between rebel supporter and NATO ..

Toll in China’s virus climbs to 2,788

FORTY four more people have died of the novel coronavirus in China, taking the death toll in the outbreak to 2,788, Chinese health officials said on Friday, amid growing criticism from experts and the public that the epidemic would have been less severe if the authorities acted when the first confirmed case was reported in December. Among the deaths reported on Thursday, 41 were from the epicentre Hubei province and its capital Wuhan, two in Beijing and one in Xinjiang, the National Health Commission ..

Earth captures new ‘mini moon’

EARTH has acquired a second “mini-moon” about the size of a car, according to astronomers who spotted the object circling our planet. The mass -- roughly 1.9-3.5 meters (6-11 feet) in diameter -- was observed by researchers Kacper Wierzchos and Teddy Pruyne at the NASA-funded Catalina Sky Survey in Arizona on the night of February 15. “BIG NEWS. Earth has a new temporarily captured object/Possible mini-moon called 2020 CD3,” likely to be a C-type asteroid, Wierzchos tweeted on Wednesday...

NASA’s InSight helps decode Martian weather

NASA’s InSight lander which touched down on the Martian equator in November 2018, has revealed secrets about the Red Planet’s weather patterns, including details about its surface tornadoes, and the steady, rumble of low-frequency sounds on the planet, a new study says. The research, published in the journal ‘Nature Geoscience’, noted that Mars experiences strong daily pressure and temperature fluctuations, stronger than on the Earth...

Adline Castelino wins Miss Diva Universe 2020

ADLINE Castelino has been crowned as the winner of LIVA Miss Diva Universe 2020 competition. Castelino, who hails from Mangalore, was crowned by Vartika Singh, the winner of the previous edition, at an event in YRF Studios on Saturday. She was closely followed by Aavriti Choudhary of Jabalpur who was bestowed with the title of Miss Diva Supranational by her predecessor Shefali Sood. Pune’s Neha Jaiswal was crowned Miss Diva Runner-up by Roshni Sheoran...

Death toll in China’s coronavirus climbs to 2,118

THE death toll from the coronavirus epidemic in China has climbed to 2,118 with the death of 114 more people, while the overall confirmed cases increased to 74,576, Chinese officials said on Thursday. China’s National Health Commission (NHC) said the new confirmed cases declined to 394, registering the biggest drop since December when the first case was reported in Wuhan city in the central Hubei Province. The NHC said on Thursday that it received reports of 114 deaths on Wednesday from 31 provincial-level ..

Indian among 79 more test +ve for COVID-19 on Japan cruise ship

AS HUNDREDS of relieved passengers disembarked a coronavirus-stricken cruise ship in Japan on Wednesday after testing negative for the disease, an additional 79 cases have been discovered aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship, the Health Ministry said on Wednesday, bringing the total to 621. Among the new cases is one more Indian who was tested positive for the novel coronavirus and shifted to hospital, taking the number of Indian nationals infected with the virus on the vessel to seven, according ..

UN chief visits Kartarpur Sahib

UN CHIEF Antonio Guterres on Tuesday visited the revered Gurudwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur, the final resting place of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev, in Pakistan’s Narowal town. The Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbhandhik Committee and Evacuee Trust Property Board officials received the UN Secretary General at Kartarpur Sahib, some 125 kms from Lahore...

Pak to remain in FATF’s grey list

A SUB-GROUP of the global terror financing watchdog FATF on Tuesday recommended continuation of Pakistan in the ‘Grey List’ for its failure to check terror funding and a final decision will be taken on February 21, sources said on Tuesday. The decision was taken at the meeting of the FATF’s International Co-operation Review Group (ICRG), held at the ongoing Paris plenary. “The ICRG meeting, sub group of the FATF, has recommended to retain Pakistan in the ‘Grey List.’ A final decision will be taken ..

UK MP deported due to invalid visa

LONDON, THE Indian High Commission in London confirmed on Tuesday that British lawmaker Debbie Abrahams, who was denied entry to India and deported to Dubai on Monday, did not hold a valid visa. Abrahams, who is an Opposition Labour Party MP and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Kashmir, claimed she was travelling on a valid e-visa to India to visit family and friends but her visa was revoked without explanation. She questioned why her visa was suddenly revoked and also the possibility ..

Air India crew gets PM’s letters of appreciation for Wuhan evacuation

A TOTAL of 68 Air India crew members, who were part of the two special flights that evacuated 647 Indians and seven Maldivians from coronavirus-hit Chinese city of Wuhan, were handed over letters of appreciation signed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday. Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri handed over the letters of appreciation to each crew member in a ceremony held here. ..

China’s coronavirus death toll rises to 1,770

TOP WHO experts, including from the US, have joined the fight against the novel coronavirus in China that has claimed 1,770 lives, as Beijing stepped up its efforts by deploying 30,000 more medical staff in the worst-affected Wuhan city to contain the spread of the epidemic. ..

India serves strong demarche to Turkey over Kashmir comments

INDIA on Monday issued a strong demarche to Turkey over its President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s comments expressing concern over the prevailing situation in Kashmir and comparing the “struggle” of Kashmiri people with that of the fight by the Turkish during the World War I...

Indian-origin restaurateur uses steel tiffins on recycling mission in Britain

AN Indian-origin restaurateur, who runs an Indian restaurant in northern England, has been inspired by his father’s decades’ old stainless steel tiffin box to launch a takeaway system not reliant on plastic. Harry Khinda, whose family hails from Punjab before settling in the UK in the 1960s, said he hit upon the concept of offering discounts on takeaways using the reusable tiffin boxes as his very own recycling mission to fight against unsustainable single-use plastic...

Coronavirus could damage global growth in 2020: IMF

THE coronavirus epidemic could damage global economic growth this year, the IMF head said on Sunday, but a sharp and rapid economic rebound could follow. “There may be a cut that we are still hoping would be in the 0.1-0.2 percentage space,” the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, told the Global Women’s Forum in Dubai. She said the full impact of the spreading disease that has already killed more than 1,600 people would depend on how quickly it was contained. ..

Indian Embassy to make efforts to disembark Indians from cruise ship affected with coronavirus

THE Indian Embassy in Japan on Saturday said it is making efforts to disembark all the Indians on board the cruise ship moored off the Japanese coast after the end of the quarantine period as authorities confirmed that 218 people, including three Indians, have been infected with the deadly disease on the ship. A total of 138 Indians, including 132 crew and 6 passengers, were among the 3,711 people on board the quarantined ship that arrived at the Japanese coast earlier this month. It was quarantined ..

Trump gets it wrong, says he is number 1 on FB while Modi ranks second

DONALD Trump on Friday claimed that he has been ranked “number one” in popularity on Facebook by its chief Mark Zuckerberg, ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi who the US President said ranks second. “Great honour, I think? Mark Zuckerberg recently stated that ‘Donald J. Trump is Number 1 on Facebook. Number 2 is Prime Minister Modi of India.’..

‘Twice as much food being wasted globally as thought’

LONDONCONSUMERS around the world may be wasting more than twice as much food as commonly believed, according to a study.   The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) estimated that in 2005, one third of all food available for human consumption was wasted, researchers from Wageningen University and Research in the Netherlands noted. This figure has continued to serve as reference for the extent of global food waste, they said.However, the FAO methodology does not ..

Govt plans massive ‘Kem Chho, Trump’ welcome

US PRESIDENT Donald Trump will get a red carpet welcome in Gujarat later this month -- on a grander scale than the event organised for Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Houston last year. Sources said that the Government is organising ‘Kem Chho, Trump’, the Gujarati equivalent of Texas event ‘Howdy Modi’ in Prime Minister’s home State, Gujarat for President Trump and his wife Melania. In a tweet, Prime Minister Modi hinted at the ongoing preparations for President Trump’s two-day visit on February 24. ..

Coronavirus death toll rises to 908; WHO sends team to China

THE death toll in China’s coronavirus outbreak has gone up to 908 with 97 new fatalities reported mostly in the worst-affected Hubei province and the confirmed cases of infection crossing 40,000, Chinese health officials said on Monday, as a team of international experts led by the WHO is set to arrive in Beijing to help contain the epidemic. According to China’s National Health Commission, 91 deaths were reported in Hubei province, the epicentre of the epidemic, two in Anhui, and one each in Heilongjiang, ..

Scientists race to develop vaccine for coronavirus

SCIENTISTS from the United States to Australia are using new technology in an ambitious, multi-million-dollar drive to develop a vaccine in record time to tackle China’s coronavirus outbreak. The new virus has spread rapidly since emerging late last year in China, killing more than 800 people in the mainland and infecting over 37,000...

Boy paid off lunch debt for school, Twitter applauds

AN INSPIRING story of an 8-year-old boy Keoni Ching from Washington is doing the rounds on the Internet who sold key chains to paid off $4,015 (Rs 2.87 lakh) of his school district lunch debt after he was inspired by former Seattle Seahawk cornerback Richard Sherman...

US Senate acquits Trump

THE US Senate on Wednesday acquitted President Donald Trump on two articles of impeachment - abuse of power and obstruction to Congress - giving him a major political victory in an election year. The Republican-majority Senate voted 52-48 to acquit Trump of abuse of power and 53-47 to acquit him of obstruction of Congress, thus preventing the Democrats’ move to overthrow him, for which they required two-thirds of votes in the 100-member House...

One-year-old Indian baby wins $1 million in UAE raffle draw

A ONE-YEAR-OLD Indian baby boy in the UAE, whose father purchased a lottery ticket in his name, won a jackpot of USD 1 million in a monthly raffle draw here, media reports said on Wednesday. Mohammad Salah’s father Ramees Rahman has been participating in the Dubai Duty Free promotions for a year now and bought the winning ticket number 1319 online in Series 323 under his son’s name, the Gulf News reported. The news of Rahman’s ticket’s lucky draw was announced on Tuesday...

World Bank calls for global effort against coronavirus

THE World Bank has called for countries to step up programmes to fight the new coronavirus outbreak, and said it was considering mobilising its own resources against the disease. “We are calling on all countries to strengthen their health surveillance and response systems, which is essential to contain the spread of this and any future outbreaks,” the institution said in a statement. “The World Bank Group is reviewing financial and technical resources that can be mobilised quickly to support affected ..

Coronavirus toll in China reaches 490

THE death toll in China’s coronavirus outbreak rose to 490 on Wednesday while the total number of confirmed cases mounted to 24,324, Chinese health officials announced on Wednesday. A total of 490 people had died after being infected and 24,324 confirmed cases of novel coronavirus infection had been reported in 31 provincial-level regions, China’s National Health Commission reported. It said 65 deaths were reported on Tuesday, all from Hubei province and its capital Wuhan...

Toll in China’s coronavirus jumps to 425, confirmed cases soar to 20,000

THE death toll in China’s coronavirus rose sharply to 425 with 64 deaths on Monday alone while 3,235 new confirmed cases were reported, taking the number of those infected with the deadly disease to 20,438, Chinese health authorities said on Tuesday. The 64 people who died on Monday were all from the Hubei province, the epicentre of the virus, China’s National Health Commission said. Also, 3,235 new confirmed cases of novel coronavirus infection were reported, a big increase in a day. Another 5,072 ..

Death toll in China’s coronavirus jumps to 361

THE death toll in China’s coronavirus epidemic soared to 361 with 57 deaths on Sunday alone while the number of confirmed cases climbed to 17,205, Chinese health officials announced on Monday. China’s National Health Commission in its daily report on Monday said that 2,829 new cases of coronavirus were reported nationwide on February 2, taking the total number of infection to 17,205...

Scientists snap first-ever images of ‘notorious’ Antarctic glacier’s foundation

USING a robotic submarine, researchers have taken the first-ever images of the Antarctic Thwaites glacier’s foundations, a step towards better monitoring of the ice sheet which is notorious for its contributions to sea-level rise. According to the researchers, including those from Georgia Institute of Technology in the US, Thwaites accounts for about four per cent of global sea-level rise, causing concerns that a tipping point in its stability may result in a run-away collapse of the glacier, and ..

Coronavirus toll soars to 259 in China

SEVERAL countries, including India, scrambled to evacuate their nationals from the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, as the death toll in China soared to 259 and nearly 12,000 people infected with the deadly virus...

Do not travel to China: US issues level 4 advisory

WASHINGTONTHE United States told its citizens on Thursday night “do not travel” to China, raising its advisory status to the highest level of alert because of the coronavirus epidemic.  (L) A local resident using a drone sprays disinfectant at a village in Pingdingshan, in China’s central Henan province during the virus outbreak in Hubei’s city of Wuhan. Students are checked by body thermal scanners as a precautionary measure against the spread of a new virus at a ..

European Parliament debates anti-CAA motion; vote delayed till March

THE European Parliament has postponed until March a vote on a joint motion, combining five different resolutions tabled by its members against India’s Citizenship Amendment Act, which was debated at its Plenary session in Brussels. The debate opened on Wednesday with a statement by Helena Dalli, the Vice-President of the European Commission and High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, who spoke strongly in favour of the “rich, frank and open” relationship the European ..

Most detailed pictures of Sun captured

THE Sun’s turbulent surface has been revealed in unprecedented detail in the first observations by a newly operational telescope in the US, which scientists say will play a critical role in the better understanding of our star, as well as the space weather...

47% land for bullet train project acquired: Chairman

THE Indian Railways will acquire rest of the 53 per cent of land required for the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious Ahmedabad-Mumbai High Speed Train project, which is also called Bullet train project, in next six months, an official said on Wednesday. Railway Board Chairman V.K. Yadav said, “Till date 47 per cent of the land has been acquired for the 508-km long Ahmedabad-Mumbai high speed rail project, and rest of the 53 per cent will be acquired in next six months.”..

Coronavirus toll in China 132

THE death toll in China due to the novel Coronavirus increased to 132 on Wednesday, with 5,974 confirmed cases, as foreign governments started to evacuate their citizens from Wuhan city, the epicentre of the outbreak. According to China’s National Health Commission, the total number of patients in serious condition stands at 1,239, while 103 people were discharged, reports Efe news...

Govt issues advisory against travel to China

THE Union Health Ministry on Wednesday asked Indians to refrain from travelling to China where the novel coronavirus has claimed over 100 lives. The Ministry issued a fresh travel advisory and also urged people travelling to China to monitor their health closely. It asked people to use 24x7 helpline (011-23978046) for queries related to respiratory infection...

India used digital platforms to reduce disparities: UN

INDIA successfully managed to use digital platforms to reduce disparities among population groups, a flagship UN study has said, noting that the country’s experience of complementing mobile technologies with the Aadhaar identification system to reduce inequality is likely to be replicated in other countries in future. The World Social Report 2020, published by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), notes how India harnessed the potential of digital technologies for more inclusive ..