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Under Covid lockdown, Xinjiang residents complain of hunger

September 14th, 2022
Under Covid lockdown, Xinjiang residents complain of hunger

BEIJING — Residents of a city in China’s far west Xinjiang region say they are experiencing hunger, forced quarantines and dwindling supplies of medicine and daily necessities after more than 40 days in a coronavirus lockdown.Hundreds of posts from Ghulja riveted users of Chinese social media last week, with residents sharing videos of empty fridges, feverish children, and people screaming from their windows.The dire conditions and food shortages are reminiscent of a harsh lockdown in Shanghai this spring, when thousands of residents posted online, complaining they were delivered rotting vegetables... Read More

Moderna’s vaccine that targets the omicron variant gets its first approval after authorized by British regulators

August 15th, 2022
Moderna’s vaccine that targets the omicron variant gets its first approval after authorized by British regulators

LONDON — British drug regulators have become the first in the world to authorize an updated version of Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine that aims to protect against the original virus and the omicron variant.In a statement on Monday, the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency said it had given the green light to Moderna’s combination “bivalent” vaccine, which will be used as an adult booster shot.Each dose of the booster shot will target both the original Covid-19 virus and the omicron BA.1 variant that was first picked up in November. British regulators said the side effects were similar... Read More

North Korea declares victory in battle against Covid-19

August 10th, 2022
North Korea declares victory in battle against Covid-19

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un declared victory in the battle against the novel coronavirus, ordering a lifting of maximum anti-epidemic measures imposed in May, state media said on Thursday.North Korea has not revealed how many confirmed infections of the virus it has found, but since July 29 it has reported no new suspected cases with what international aid organizations say are limited testing capabilities.While lifting the maximum anti-pandemic measures, Kim said that North Korea must maintain a “steel-strong anti-epidemic barrier” and intensify anti-epidemic work... Read More

Thousands stranded as Chinese tourist island expands Covid lockdowns

August 8th, 2022
Thousands stranded as Chinese tourist island expands Covid lockdowns

The provincial capital city of Haikou, with about 2.9 million residents, and two smaller towns, Ledong and Chengmai, locked down its residents on Monday, according to state media reports.At least eight cities and towns, with a combined population of about 7 million, said their residents must not leave where they live except for necessary reasons such as Covid tests, grocery shopping or essential job roles. They also suspended public transport services.The measures will stay in place for varying periods, with the shortest scheduled for a few hours, state media reports show.About 25,000 tourists... Read More

New studies bolster theory that coronavirus emerged from the wild, not a Chinese lab

July 26th, 2022
New studies bolster theory that coronavirus emerged from the wild, not a Chinese lab

Two new studies provide more evidence that the coronavirus pandemic originated in a Wuhan, China market where live animals were sold — further bolstering the theory that the virus emerged in the wild rather than escaping from a Chinese lab.The research, published online Tuesday by the journal Science, shows that the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market was likely the early epicenter of the scourge that has now killed nearly 6.4 million people around the world. Scientists conclude that the virus that causes Covid-19, SARS-CoV-2, likely spilled from animals into people two separate times.“All this... Read More

Micronesia last of bigger nations to have coronavirus outbreak

July 20th, 2022
Micronesia last of bigger nations to have coronavirus outbreak

WELLINGTON, New Zealand — Micronesia has most likely become the final nation in the world with a population of more than 100,000 to experience an outbreak of the coronavirus.For more than two and a half years, the Pacific archipelago managed to avoid any outbreaks thanks to its geographic isolation and border controls. Those people who flew into the country with the disease didn’t spread it because all new arrivals were required to quarantine.But as has been the case in several other Pacific nations this year, those defenses couldn’t keep out the more transmissible omicron variant forever.On... Read More

Jan. 6 committee Chair Bennie Thompson tests positive for Covid

July 19th, 2022
Jan. 6 committee Chair Bennie Thompson tests positive for Covid

The chair of the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, Rep. Bennie Thompson, said Tuesday that has tested positive for the coronavirus and is experiencing “mild symptoms.””I am continuing to follow CDC guidelines and will be isolating for the next several days,” the 74-year-old Mississippi Democrat said in a statement he shared on Twitter. Thompson announced the positive result two days ahead of his panel’s final scheduled hearing, a prime-time event focusing on what former President Donald Trump was doing during the riot. The panel said... Read More

25 million children missed routine vaccinations because of Covid

July 15th, 2022
25 million children missed routine vaccinations because of Covid

GENEVA — About 25 million children worldwide have missed out on routine immunizations against common diseases like diptheria, largely because the coronavirus pandemic disrupted regular health services or triggered misinformation about vaccines, according to the U.N.In a new report published Friday, the World Health Organization and UNICEF said their figures show 25 million children last year failed to get vaccinated against diptheria, tetanus and pertussis, a marker for childhood immunization coverage, continuing a downward trend that began in 2019.“This is a red alert for child health,”... Read More

Biden tested negative for Covid, source says, after White House spokesperson initially declined to disclose

June 16th, 2022
Biden tested negative for Covid, source says, after White House spokesperson initially declined to disclose

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden twice tested negative for the coronavirus this week, a source familiar with the matter told NBC News, despite high-profile interactions with individuals who recently disclosed positive cases.The disclosure came after the top White House spokesperson, Karine Jean-Pierre, repeatedly refused to reveal the president’s testing status, a reversal from previous practice.In at times tense exchanges with reporters during the daily news briefing, Jean-Pierre said she did not have information about the president’s most recent test, but also would not commit to disclosing... Read More

Biden administration diverts Covid-19 funds to secure vaccines amid stalemate

June 8th, 2022
Biden administration diverts Covid-19 funds to secure vaccines amid stalemate

WASHINGTON — After failing to get additional Covid funding from Congress, the White House will divert more than $10 billion it had planned to spend on testing and personal protective equipment to buy new vaccines and treatments it anticipates needing this fall. The redirected funds will enable the U.S. to start contract negotiations with vaccine-makers to order new shots for the fall, including next-generation vaccines the companies are in the process of developing, a White House official said in a statement.But even with the redirected funds, the U.S. still won’t have enough money to purchase... Read More