French protests call for ‘freedom’ amid government vaccine push

PARIS (Reuters) -More than a hundred thousand people marched across France on Saturday to protest against President Emmanuel Macron’s plans to force vaccination of health workers and require a COVID-19 free certificate to enter places such as restaurants and cinemas. Macron this week announced sweeping measures to fight a rapid surge in coronavirus infections, which […]

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India pulls officials from Afghanistan’s Kandahar as Taliban widens control

MUMBAI (Reuters) – India said on Sunday it had temporarily brought back officials from its consulate in Kandahar, a major city in southern Afghanistan, as Taliban fighters continue to gain control amid the withdrawal of international forces. “Due to the intense fighting near Kandahar city, India-based personnel have been brought back for the time being,” […]

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Ten million Australians in virus lockdown

About 10 million Australians have been ordered into lockdown as Covid-19 spreads across the country, after Brisbane on Tuesday became the fourth major city to issue stay-at-home orders. The three-day snap lockdown for Brisbane, starting on Tuesday evening, comes on top of similar orders imposed in Sydney, Perth and Darwin residents in recent days. “These […]

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Indian COVID-19 variant found in at least 53 territories: WHO

The coronavirus variant first detected in India has now been officially recorded in 53 territories, a World Health Organization report showed Wednesday. Additionally, the WHO has received information from unofficial sources that the B.1.617 variant has been found in seven other territories, figures in the UN health agency’s weekly epidemiological update showed, taking the total […]

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What is ‘black fungus’ and why India?

Several thousand coronavirus patients in India have contracted a deadly and aggressive fungal infection, compounding the country’s woes as it reels from the pandemic. – What is the fungus? – Mucormycosis, dubbed “black fungus”, is caused by a mould found in soil and in decaying organic matter like rotting leaves, according to the US Centers […]

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Deadly ‘black fungus’ surges among India’s COVID-19 patients

Special hospital wards will be set up in India’s capital New Delhi to fight ‘black fungus’, authorities said Thursday as the life-threatening infection surged among coronavirus patients. A rare disease in normal times, authorities say thousands have developed Mucormycosis — or black fungus — across India as it battles a Covid-19 wave that has killed […]

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WHO declares COVID mutation found in India a ‘variant of concern’ for global health

The World Health Organization on Monday classified a coronavirus mutation first detected in India as a “variant of concern” for global health, warning that it appears to be more contagious than other strains. Experts believe the variant, formally known as B.1.617, could be a key driving force behind the devastating coronavirus surge in India, which […]

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US flying transport planes with supplies to COVID-stricken India, Biden security official says

The U.S. has sent a number of large military transport planes loaded with supplies, including desperately needed oxygen, to India for its lethal battle against COVID-19, a top security official said Sunday. India is home to more than a third of the world’s new COVID-19 cases, according to U.S. officials, and that grim tally soared […]

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Poll shows people of the world think US significantly less awful now that Trump is gone

The percentage of people with favorable views of the United States has increased in at least a dozen countries since former President Donald Trump left office, according to a new poll released Tuesday. “President Joe Biden inherited a tarnished American image abroad when he took office on Jan. 20 following four years of President Donald […]

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‘Utterly disgusting’: Big Pharma lobby blitz against vaccine patent waivers denounced

As campaigners worldwide continue their efforts to unleash live-saving vaccine patents and technology from the profitable control of major pharmaceutical corporations this week, new reporting by The Intercept details the “army of lobbyists” Big Pharma has aimed at U.S. lawmakers in order to kneecap the global push to lift intellectual property through a waiver at […]

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India’s capital Delhi faces hospital beds shortage as coronavirus cases surge

By Rajendra Jadhav and Aditya Kalra NEW DELHI (Reuters) -India’s capital New Delhi recorded 24,000 coronavirus cases in a 24-hour period and is facing an acute shortage of hospital beds, its chief minister said on Saturday, as the country overall recorded more than 200,000 cases for a third day. “The situation is very critical, worrying. […]

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Lethal pollution high in 2020 despite lockdowns

Deadly small particle pollution in four of five nations exceeded World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations last year despite Covid lockdowns, according to a report released Tuesday. The partial or complete shutdown of transport and industry for months at a time in 2020 reduced average levels of so-called PM2.5 pollution across the world, including in major […]

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Bollywood, streaming giants on edge as Amazon gets flak for hurting religious beliefs in India

By Shilpa Jamkhandikar, Aditya Kalra and Euan Rocha MUMBAI (Reuters) – Controversy in India over Amazon’s political drama “Tandav” has put Bollywood and global video streaming giants on edge, prompting a closer scrutiny of scripts for possible offence to religious sentiments in a key growth market. Companies like Amazon’s Prime Video and Netflix are inspecting […]

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