Thursday August 11, 2022

Coronavirus: Latest global developments

The pandemic has killed at least 3,884,538 people since the virus first emerged in December 2019

June 24, 2021
Coronavirus: Latest global developments

PARIS: Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:

- Delta variant to dominate EU -

The highly contagious Delta variant could soon account for 90 percent of new coronavirus cases in the EU, the bloc´s disease control agency says, urging members to spur vaccination drives.

- ´Explosive´ situation in Russia -

Russia warns of an "explosive" spread of the Delta coronavirus variant in the country made worse by a sluggish vaccination campaign leading to rapidly rising infections and deaths.

- Morgan Stanley to require vaccinations -

Morgan Stanley becomes the latest big financial firm to require employees to be vaccinated at some company offices as corporate America adjusts workplace rules to the reopening US economy.

- Anti-vaxxers fired -

More than 150 employees at the Houston Methodist hospital in Texas resign or are fired after failing to comply with orders to get a vaccination to continue working there.

- Teen heart problems -

A panel of experts convened by the top US health agency will review data surrounding more than 300 confirmed cases of heart muscle inflammation among adolescents and young adults after receiving mRNA vaccines like the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna jabs.

- Easing in Greece and Switzerland -

Greece says masks will not be required outdoors from Thursday, except when large numbers of people have gathered. A curfew is to be lifted on Monday.

Switzerland will scrap most of its remaining coronavirus restrictions this weekend, including for entry into the country.

Remaining outdoor mask-wearing rules will be dropped from Saturday and the requirement to work from home will be downgraded to a recommendation.

- No cheering at Games -

With a month to go till the opening ceremony, Tokyo Olympic organisers unveil tough new rules for spectators at the Games, including no alcohol, no hugs, no cheers and no autographs.

- Sydney lockdown -

Residents in Sydney are largely banned from leaving the city as Australian authorities rush to stop a growing outbreak of the highly contagious Delta variant from spreading.

- Almost 3.9 million dead -

The pandemic has killed at least 3,884,538 people since the virus first emerged in December 2019, according to an AFP compilation of official data at 1000 GMT.

The United States is the worst-affected country with 602,462 deaths, followed by Brazil with 504,717, India with 390,660 Mexico with 231,505 and Peru with 190,906.

The figures are based on reports by health authorities in each country, but do not take into account upward revisions carried out later by statistical bodies.

The WHO says up to three times more people have died directly or indirectly due to the pandemic than official figures suggest.