'We're at war': Half a million infected

 

The head of the United Nations has told leaders of the world's 20 major industrialised nations during an emergency virtual summit that "we are at war with a virus - and not winning it".

The unusual video call in lieu of a physical gathering comes as governments around the world stress the importance of social distancing to curb the spread of the highly infectious virus, which has prompted closures, curfews and lockdowns globally.

The Group of 20 nations (G20), which includes Australia and faces criticism for not taking cohesive action against the virus, has vowed to work together. 

It comes as the global tally of coronavirus infections has now surpassed 500,000 people after Italy reported another spike in cases.

The virus is now present in 175 countries and more than 22000 people have died.

500 more New York cops call in sick

Gavin Fernando

The New York Police Department is down 11 per cent after 500 more cops called in sick.

A document obtained by The New York Post shows 2,563 of the NYPD's almost 24,000 police officers had called out Thursday morning - or about 10.7 percent of officers.

Almost 11 percent of all detectives were out - with 579 of the department's 5,305 out ill, the record shows.

New York State had 37,258 confirmed cases as of Thursday morning, up more than 6,400 from the previous day.

  42m agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

US surpasses Italy, China in virus cases

Gavin Fernando

The United States now officially has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the world, surpassing China and Italy.

Over 82,000 people are now known to have been infected with the coronavirus in the US.

China sits at 81,285 recorded cases, and Italy at 80,589.

  1h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

China to close borders

Gavin Fernando

China will close its borders tomorrow to further halt the spread of the virus.

The country's Foreign Ministry has confirmed Beijing will ban the entry of foreigners with valid Chinese visas and residence permits starting from Saturday.

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) said it had directed Chinese airlines to maintain only one route to any country and limit the number of flights to one per week.

The virus has killed almost 3300 people in China to date.

  1h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

US hits Iran with new sanctions

Gavin Fernando

The United States has slapped a fresh round of sanctions on more than a dozen Iranian individuals and five companies.

The sanctions were announced after the family of retired FBI agent Robert Levinson, who went missing more than a decade ago, released a statement saying they believed he was killed.

Iran's 85 million people are dying from the coronavirus at a rate some officials say is as frequent as one person every 10 minutes, with the country's confirmed death toll sailing over 8000 overnight.

  1h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

Nursing homes in Spain hit hard by virus

Gavin Fernando

A total of 1,307 elderly residents of Spanish nursing homes have died from coronavirus, accounting for around a third of the country's total death toll.

Nursing homes, whose elderly residents are highly vulnerable to COVID-19, have been hit especially hard by the virus, with nursing home deaths totalling 855 since the start of the epidemic in the Madrid region alone.

 

  2h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

UK coronavirus tally nears 10,000

Gavin Fernando

The number of coronavirus deaths in the UK has risen from 422 to 463, with the total number of coronavirus cases there rising to 9529 as of Wednesday.

This is compared to 8077 cases as of Tuesday, the British government said in a statement.

The government is anticipating a peaking of coronavirus cases in Britain in the coming weeks and has appealed to manufacturers to supply the National Health Service with the appropriate requirements.

 

 

  2h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

UK residents cheer for the NHS

Gavin Fernando

People across the UK took part in a mass round of applause for the National Health Service (NHS) heroes battling the coronavirus on the frontlines.

Residents were filmed applauding from their doorsteps, windows and balconies, with some venturing into the streets, and motorists joining in. There were even a few fireworks.

3h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

Italy's new numbers push global toll over 500,000

Gavin Fernando

The global coronavirus toll has surpassed 500,000 after Italy recorded 6153 new coronavirus infections.

Italy now has 80,539 recorded cases, almost as many as China.

The country's Civil Protection Agency reported 662 deaths, bringing the country's death toll to 8165 - the highest in the world.

  3h agoMarch 27, 2020HIGHLIGHT

'We are at war with the virus - and not winning'

The head of the United Nations has told leaders of the world's 20 major industrialised nations during an emergency virtual summit that "we are at war with a virus - and not winning it".

The unusual video call in lieu of a physical gathering comes as governments around the world stress the importance of social distancing to curb the spread of the highly infectious virus, which has prompted closures, curfews and lockdowns globally.

The Group of 20 nations (G20), which includes Australia represented by Prime Minister Scott Morrison and faces criticism for not taking cohesive action against the virus or its economic impact, vowed to work together.

It comes as the global tally of coronavirus infections has now surpassed 500,000 people.

- Wires

 

G20 leaders vow to 'spare no effort'

Alle McMahon

G20 leaders have vowed to "spare no effort" in their fight against the global coronavirus pandemic.

"We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life and the suffering faced by people around the world," they said in a joint statement following their virtual meeting overnight.

"Tackling the pandemic and its intertwined health, social and economic impacts is our absolute priority," it added.

The leaders, who represent the world's biggest economies, have pledged to:

  • Take all necessary health measures to protect people, especially the most vulnerable
  • Expand manufacturing capacity to meet the increasing needs for medical supplies
  • Ensure those supplies are made widely available, at an affordable price, where they are most needed and as quickly as possible
  • Inject $5 trillion into the global economy
  • Fully support the World Health Organisation's (WHO) in its efforts to combat the virus
  • Strengthen national, regional, and global capacities to respond to potential infectious disease outbreaks
  • Work together to increase research and development funding for vaccines and medicines
  • Do whatever it takes and use all available policy tools to minimise the economic and social damage from the pandemic
  • Ensure the flow of vital medical supplies, critical agricultural products, and other goods and services across borders
  • Work swiftly and decisively with the front-line international organisations, notably the WHO, IMF, WBG

"We are confident that, working closely together, we will overcome this," the leaders said.

"We will protect human life, restore global economic stability, and lay out solid foundations for strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth."

    1:41 amMarch 27, 2020

Record number of Americans apply for benefits

Alle McMahon

A record-shattering 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week as the coronavirus took its toll the world's largest economy.

That's nearly five times the old record, set in 1982.

An unprecedented US$2.2 trillion economic rescue package to help businesses, hospitals and ordinary Americans make it through the crisis has now cleared the Senate and is expected to be voted on in the House on Friday.

The plan will dispense checks of $1,200 per adult and $500 per child.

About 70000 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed across the United States and more than 1000 people have died.

Originally published as 'We're at war': Half a million infected



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