America News

WHO says monkeypox cases triple in Europe in two weeks, urgent action needed to contain spread

"Urgent and coordinated action is imperative if we are to turn a corner in the race to reverse the ongoing spread of this disease," said the head of WHO Europe.

FDA backs changing Covid booster shots to target most recent omicron subvariants

Dr. Peter Marks, head of the FDA's vaccine division, said manufacturers should update their shots to target omicron BA.4 and BA.5.

Renewable energy vs. fossil fuels? It's a false choice, says John Doerr

Russia's war with Ukraine sparked debate over energy transition and choices like solar vs. fossil fuels, but investor John Doerr says it's a false choice.

CVS removes purchase limit on Plan B pills, says sales have 'returned to normal'

CVS is removing its earlier purchase limit for emergency contraceptive pills.

U.S. to deploy nearly 300,000 monkeypox vaccine doses to fight outbreak

The U.S. will deploy nearly 300,000 monekypox vaccine doses in the coming weeks in an effort to stamp out an outbreak of the virus that continues to grow.

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Europe News

Spanish rugby president resigns after World Cup exclusion

The head of the Spanish Rugby Federation confirmed his resignation on Saturday after the country's appeal against disqualification from the 2023 Rugby World Cup was rejected this week.

Cabin crew staff to extend Spain strike by 12 days

A cabin crew strike at EasyJet and Ryanair saw 15 flights to and from Spain cancelled and 175 others delayed Saturday, as staff at the Irish airline announced 12 more days of stoppages.

UPDATE: SAS pilots extend strike talks until midday on Monday

Pilot unions in Sweden, Denmark and Norway have agreed to extend talks with the SAS airline until midday on Monday, after a deadline on Saturday passed without a deal. SAS flights scheduled for this weekend will fly as normal.

IN PICTURES: The Tour de France starts in Denmark

The 109th edition of the famous Tour de France bike race set off from Copenhagen this week. Here's the best pictures so far as the world's biggest bike race makes its way through Denmark.

Protesters rally in Spain, Morocco over migrant deaths

Rallies were held in several Spanish cities and in Rabat on Friday.

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BBC World News

Deadly blasts hit Russian border city

At least three are reported killed in explosions in the city of Belgorod, near the border with Ukraine.

Three police die in 'pure hell' Kentucky shooting

The officers are killed along with a police dog as they try to serve a warrant for domestic violence.

Argentina's economy minister makes sudden exit

Martin Guzmán's departure leaves a big question mark over Argentina's future economic policy.

Nigeria rejects Ukraine online degrees: 'It's not fair'

Distraught medical students who fled Ukraine are told their distance-learning degrees are not valid.

US woman denied termination in Malta: 'I was terrified'

Andrea was medically evacuated to Spain as doctors in Malta could not terminate her pregnancy under the country's ban on abortion.

Daphne du Maurier: Novelist who traced past to a French debtors' jail

Rebecca writer Dame Daphne du Maurier discovered her apparent aristocratic past was not as it seemed.

Sarfaraz Khan: The 'wandering cricketer' on the road to stardom

Sarfaraz Khan's heavy scoring in domestic cricket has him knocking on the doors of Indian cricket.

Ukraine war: Ukraine and Russia both claim control over Lysychansk

The strategic eastern city of Lysychansk is at the centre of competing claims as fighting rages.

Ukraine: The teachers swapping classrooms for trenches

A number of teachers in Ukraine are educating their students online from the front line.

Inside a US abortion clinic in its final days

The BBC spent time with staff before they had to stop work and turn patients away.

BBC World News is brought to you by BBC

Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Case Tracker

Provided by Johns Hopkins University this COVID-19 Global Case Tracker Dashboard shows you the most up-to-date information about the global spread of the new corona virus.

About the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic, also known as the coronavirus pandemic, is an ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The virus was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern regarding COVID-19 on 30 January 2020, and later declared a pandemic on 11 March 2020. As of 2 June 2021, more than 171 million cases have been confirmed, with more than 3.56 million confirmed deaths attributed to COVID-19, making it one of the deadliest pandemics in history.

Symptoms of COVID-19 are highly variable, ranging from none to life-threateningly severe. COVID-19 transmits when people breathe in air contaminated by droplets and small airborne particles. The risk of breathing these in is highest when people are in close proximity, but they can be inhaled over longer distances, particularly indoors. Transmission can also occur if splashed or sprayed with contaminated fluids, in the eyes nose or mouth, and rarely via contaminated surfaces. People remain contagious for up to 20 days, and can spread the virus even if they do not develop any symptoms.

Recommended preventive measures include social distancing, wearing face masks in public, ventilation and air-filtering, hand washing, covering one's mouth when sneezing or coughing, disinfecting surfaces, and monitoring and self-isolation for people exposed or symptomatic. Several vaccines have been developed and widely distributed since December 2020. Current treatments focus on addressing symptoms, but work is underway to develop medications that inhibit the virus. Authorities worldwide have responded by implementing travel restrictions, lockdowns and quarantines, workplace hazard controls, and business closures. Numerous jurisdictions have also worked to increase testing capacity and trace contacts of the infected.

The pandemic has resulted in significant global social and economic disruption, including the largest global recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s. It has led to widespread supply shortages exacerbated by panic buying, agricultural disruption, and food shortages. However, there have also been decreased emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gases. Numerous educational institutions and public areas have been partially or fully closed, and many events have been cancelled or postponed. Misinformation has circulated through social media and mass media, and political tensions have been exacerbated. The pandemic has raised issues of racial and geographic discrimination, health equity, and the balance between public health imperatives and individual rights.

Source: Wikipedia (June 2, 2021)

Please find below further updates from The World Health Organization (WHO).

Suspension of supply of COVID-19 vaccine (COVAXIN®)

Suspension of supply of Covaxin produced by Bharat, through UN procurement agencies and recommending to countries that received the vaccine to take actions as appropriate.

WHO, Qatar, FIFA leaders agree actions to promote health at FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™

As part of a unique global partnership to promote health, the senior leadership of the World Health Organization (WHO), the State of Qatar and FIFA today agreed a range of measures that will be implemented at this year’s FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ to protect and encourage health; and take lessons learned from the first tournament in the Middle East and Arab world to share with future mega sporting events.

The heads of WHO, Qatar Ministry of Public Health, FIFA and the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) met together for the first Steering Committee meeting of the “Healthy FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ – Creating Legacy for Sport and Health” partnership. Launched in late 2021, the partnership is committed to:

"The State of Qatar is proud to be the first country from the Middle East to host the FIFA World Cup,” said HE Dr Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari, Qatar’s Minister of Public Health and Chair of the Steering Committee Meeting. “Our overall goal is not just to hold a successful sporting event, but to also show how football and sports in general can be drivers of better health for all people. This is why we are working so closely with WHO, FIFA and the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy.”

At today’s meetings, the Steering Committee leaders agreed a range of action areas to be taken for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ and future events, including:

“WHO is committed to working with the State of Qatar and FIFA to leverage the global power of football to help people lead the healthiest lives possible,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “This partnership will help to make the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 a role model for healthy sporting events.”

The first-of-its-kind agreement was also lauded by FIFA President Gianni Infantino, who said, “It’s important that the first FIFA World Cup in the Middle East will be the healthiest World Cup ever. Here, we put our efforts together through this innovative partnership to promote health in a different way, using the power of football to communicate certain messages. We have been working together on different awareness campaigns and what better platform now than the FIFA World Cup for passing the Health for All message?"

“You have to do whatever you can to protect your health and that of those around you. That is part of education and that is why we are proud to be part of this team here. We need health for football, and we need football for health. Let’s win this World Cup, our World Cup, which is a World Cup of humanity in the end,” Mr Infantino added.

As part of the agreement, two SC legacy programmes – Generation Amazing and B4Development (B4D) – will provide operational and technical collaboration on a range of projects. Generation Amazing is a football for development programme that has positively impacted more than 725 000 people globally since being launched during Qatar’s bid to host the FIFA World Cup™, while B4D is the region’s first “nudge unit” that utilizes behavioural science to solve a range of societal issues.

H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi, SC Secretary General, said, “As FIFA World Cup hosts, Qatar has worked to underscore the importance of leaving sustainable and transformative social legacies that improve lives – in Qatar, within our region and around the world.”

“This partnership is critical for us as we prepare for hosting the world at the end of this year in the context of the pandemic, which has affected so many lives around the world.  We’re engaging in every effort along with local and international partners to ensure a healthy and safe FIFA World Cup.”

“Together, our work with FIFA and WHO will add to our current efforts, including projects delivered by our legacy programmes such as Generation Amazing and B4Development, to ensure the first FIFA World Cup in our region serves as a benchmark for future mega-events across the globe,” he added.

Dr Ahmed Al-Mandhari, WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, reinforced the Organization’s commitment to advancing health for all in the Region, and said that the partnership between WHO and Qatar would support improvements in physical activity, mental health and organized sports.

“WHO looks forward to working closely with Qatar in the months ahead to use the platform that sporting events offer to bring people together and foster solidarity, which is the core of our regional vision of 'Health for all by all: a call for solidarity and action', while at the same time promoting healthier habits, from diet to physical activity, for people of all ages, genders and cultures.”