Greece imposes new coronavirus restrictions as cases soar – latest updates

Covid-19 has infected nearly 250M people and killed over 5M worldwide. Here are coronavirus-related developments for November 6:

An employee checks Covid-19 vaccine certifications at the entrance of a shop in central Athens.
An employee checks Covid-19 vaccine certifications at the entrance of a shop in central Athens. (AFP)

Saturday, November 6, 2021

Unvaccinated in Greece face new restrictions as cases soar

Queues formed outside shops in Athens on the first day of new restrictions on Saturday to curb soaring coronavirus infections which require the unvaccinated to have negative tests.!-Plant-vs-Canelo-Live-Stream-On-FREE

Covid-19 infections in Greece hit a new daily high almost every day in November, prompting authorities to announce new measures on Tuesday.

New restriction bar access to cafes and restaurants, state services and banks to those who are either vaccinated or have a negative test.

Those vaccinated against coronavirus also have to present their vaccination certificates, triggering long lines outside shops in the capital’s busiest shopping street, Ermou.

Greece reported 6,909 new coronavirus infections on Friday, breaking a previous single-day record of 6,808 recorded on Thursday.

This took the total number of infections to 774,265 since the pandemic began last year. Some 16,200 death people have died.

UK reports 155 new deaths and 30,693 cases

Britain has reported 155 deaths of people who had tested positive for Covid-19 within the past 28 days, and a further 30,693 new infections.

The government figures show a fall from the 193 deaths and 34,029 new cases reported on Friday.

Italy logs 31 deaths, 6,764 new cases

Italy has reported 31 coronavirus-related deaths against 51 the day before, the health ministry said. It reported 6,764 new infections, the exact same figure as the previous day.

Italy has registered 132,365 deaths linked to Covid-19 since its outbreak emerged in February last year, the second-highest toll in Europe after Britain, and the ninth-highest in the world.

Russia registers all-time high number of cases

Russia has registered a new record number of coronavirus cases with 41,335 people testing positive over the past day, raising the country’s tally to 8.75 million and active cases to 975,123.

Over the same period, 29,201 people recovered, bringing the overall count to 7.53 million, while 1,188 died, pushing the death toll to 245,635, Russia’s coronavirus emergency task force said in a daily report.

Authorities blame the low level of vaccination for the spike in cases. Currently, the vaccination rate stands at 33.58 percent despite the wide availability of doses.

On October 28, Russia launched a national 10-day non-working period, aiming to stem the virus spread.

Since December 2019, the pandemic has claimed more than 5.04 million lives in 192 countries and regions, with over 249.2 million cases reported worldwide, according to the US Johns Hopkins University.

Deaths in Ukraine hit record amid low vaccination rate

Ukraine’s health ministry has reported a one-day record of 793 deaths from Covid-19.

Ukraine has been inundated by coronavirus infections in recent weeks, putting the country’s underfunded medical system under severe strain.

The ministry said 25,063 new infections had been tallied over the past day; a record 27,377 were reported on Thursday.

Although four different coronavirus vaccines are available in Ukraine, only 17.9 percent of the country’s 41 million people have been fully vaccinated, the second-lowest rate in Europe after Armenia.

In a bid to stem contagion, Ukrainian authorities have required teachers, government employees and other workers to get fully vaccinated by November 8 or face having their salary suspended.

In addition, proof of vaccination or a negative test is now required to board planes, trains and long-distance buses. Earlier this week, protesters marched in the capital of Kyiv to decry the new restrictions.

Ukraine has registered more than 3 million infection cases overall and 71,635 virus-related deaths.

Ukraine also borders Russia, which has seen new records weekly since mid-September in the number of daily deaths and infections.

Vaccines delivered to Yemen cover only 1.5 percent of population

Coronavirus vaccine doses received by Yemen are enough to only 1.5 percent of the country’s population, according to the UN.

“War-torn Yemen has so far received Covid-19 vaccine doses enough to cover only 1.5 percent of its population,” the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a Twitter post.

The Yemeni government previously received only about half a million doses of vaccines provided by donors.

Yemen’s population is about 30 million.

As of Friday evening, the total number of coronavirus infections in the areas under the control of the Yemeni government rose to 9,843, including 1,905 deaths.

Yemen has been engulfed by violence and instability since 2014, when Iran-aligned Houthi rebels captured much of the country, including the capital Sanaa.

A Saudi-led coalition aimed at reinstating the Yemeni government has worsened the situation, causing one of the world’s worst man-made humanitarian crises with 23 3,000 people killed, nearly 80 percent or about 30 million needing humanitarian assistance and protection, and more than 13 million in danger of starvation, according to UN estimates.

Australia hits ‘magnificent milestone’ with 80 percent rate of vaccinations

Australia has reached a full inoculation rate of 80 percent of those aged 16 and older, which Prime Minister Scott Morrison called a “magnificent milestone” on the path to becoming one of the world’s most vaccinated countries against Covid-19.

Once a champion of a Covid-zero strategy to manage the pandemic, the country of 25 million has moved towards living with the virus through extensive vaccinations, as the Delta variant has proven too infectious to suppress.

“Another, magnificent milestone, Australia,” Morrison said in a video post on Facebook.

“That’s four out of five, how good is that? This has been a true Australian national effort.”

Germany to offer Covid-19 booster to all vaccinated people

Germany will offer a Covid-19 booster to all vaccinated people six months after receiving their previous dose, Health Minister Jens Spahn announced.

“Booster shots after six months should become the norm, not the exception,” Spahn said following a meeting with health ministers from the country’s federal states, adding that this will provide stronger protection.

Germany reported a record 37,120 new coronavirus cases on Friday, marking the highest single-day count since the pandemic began early last year. The surge in new infections raised fears that the winter would lead to more outbreaks.

New Zealand’s daily cases cross 200 for first time

New Zealand’s 206 new daily community infections carried it past the double-hundred mark for the first time during the coronavirus pandemic, as the nation scrambles to vaccinate its population of 5 million.

The most populous city of Auckland, which reported 200 of the new cases, has lived under Covid-19 curbs for nearly three months as it battles an outbreak of the infectious Delta variant, although restrictions are expected to ease on Monday.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she wanted Auckland residents to be able to travel for the southern hemisphere summer and Christmas.

Ukraine reports record 793 daily coronavirus-related deaths

Ukraine has registered a record 793 coronavirus-related deaths over the past 24 hours, the health ministry said.

The previous high of 734 deaths was on October 26.

The ministry’s data showed 25,063 new infections were reported over the past 24 hours. Ukraine has reported a total of 3.06 million coronavirus cases and 71,635 deaths.

Denver Zoo reports world’s first coronavirus cases in hyenas

Two hyenas at the Denver Zoo have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Samples from a variety of animals at the zoo, including the spotted hyenas, were tested after several lions at the facility became ill, according to the National Veterinary Services Laboratories.

It was the first confirmed cases among the animals worldwide.

The hyena samples tested presumptive positive at a lab at Colorado State University, and the cases were confirmed by the national lab.

In addition to the two hyenas, 11 lions and two tigers at the zoo tested positive for the virus.

Mainland China reports 55 new cases

Mainland China has reported 55 new cases, down from 78 a day earlier.

The National Health Commission said in its daily bulletin that 40 of the new cases were locally transmitted, down from 68 the previous day, with 16 in the northeast border province of Heilongjiang.

The number of new asymptomatic cases, which China does not classify as confirmed cases, stood at 27, down from 42 a day earlier.

Mainland China has reported 97,660 cases, with 4,636 deaths.

US expects delays when travel restriction lifts

The United States is preparing for long lines and delays when restrictions are lifted on non-US citizen international travelers who are fully vaccinated against the virus.

President Joe Biden’s administration “expects pent-up demand for travel, which means longer than normal wait times for travelers,” the official said. The government was boosting staffing to pre-pandemic levels but “long lines are expected in the initial days.”

The United States on Monday is lifting travel restrictions for fully vaccinated air travelers from 33 countries and at its land borders with Mexico and Canada, ending the historic entry bans to address the spread of the virus for much of the world’s population.

Brazil registers 389 new deaths

Brazil has reported 389 new deaths and 13,321 additional cases.

The South American country has now registered a total of 609,060 deaths and 21,862,458 total confirmed cases, according to data released by the nation’s health ministry.

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