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Wednesday 12th August 2020

There have now been 20 million confirmed COVID19 infections.

This is SEND7 World News in 7 minutes. It’s Wednesday 12th August 2020.

Starting in Asia today...

Russia has approved the use of a coronavirus vaccine. This is the first approved COVID19 vaccine in the world. Yesterday President Vladamir Putin announced that the vaccine was registered and was being made available. Putin also said that one of his daughters had already taken the vaccine. Russia says that is has received requests for over a billion doses from at least 20 countries. The vaccine has not finished the Phase 3 trials that are required in most parts of the world. Phase 3 trials involve testing the vaccine on thousands of people. In April, Russia eliminated the requirement of phase 3 trials. The World Health Organization said yesterday that it had not yet received enough information from Russia. The WHO also said that vaccines should not be produced without completing phase 3 trials.

The Iraqi army has said that two of its senior officials have been killed by Turkish drones. Turkish drones often cross the border into Iraq, targeting Kurdish fighters. Turkey has not commented on the accusations.

New Zealand has reported its first local cases of COVID19 in 102 days. Over the last 3 months, all infections have been imported and contained. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern yesterday ordered the lockdown of the city of Auckland...

“After 102 days we have our first cases of COVID19 outside of a managed isolation or quarantine facility in New Zealand”.


Colombia has received a message of support from Tedros Adhanom, the WHO chief. In a message yesterday Adhanom praised the work of the Colombian government in controlling the spread of COVID19, and told Colombians of the most important things that they can do to help...

“If you feel sick, stay home and call a medical provider. Keep a safe distance from others. Clean your hands regularly with soap and water or use an alcohol based hand rub. Avoid crowded or enclosed spaces and wear a mask. By protecting ourselves we are also protecting each other. WHO is proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Government and people of Colombia. Together we will prevail and together we will build a healthier, safer, fairer future for our children and grandchildren. Muchas gracias, pueblo Colombiano.”

Facebook has said that it removed 7 million posts in 3 months, related to the coronavirus. Facebook said that content was removed that promoted fake cures and fake preventative measures.


Belarussian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya has left Belarus. She said that she decided to leave to Lithuania, to protect her children. Protests in Belarus have continued since the election on Sunday, where President Lukashenko was declared the winner of a 6th term in office. Lukashenko is often described as “Europe’s last dictator”.

France and the UK have agreed on new tactics to stop people from illegally crossing the English Channel. Over 4000 people have crossed into the UK illegally this year, mostly on small boats. Yesterday British immigration Minister Chris Philp said that the route was controlled by criminal gangs, and it put lives at risk...

“We had a very constructive meeting with our french colleagues in Paris this morning. We have reaffirmed our unshakable shared commitment to making sure this route of crossing the channel is made unviable. It is facilitated by ruthless criminal gangs, it puts lives at risk, and it is totally unnecessary.”

The United Kingdom reported its highest daily total cases of coronavirus since June yesterday - over 1,100. Lockdown measures were relaxed last month in the UK. Other parts of Western Europe, including Spain and France, have also seen a rise in confirmed daily cases, since relaxing restrictions.


In Mali protests have continued against the government. Thousands of people were on the streets of Bamako yesterday demanding the resignation of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.

In Somalia an attack inside a prison has left at least 6 prisoners dead in Mogadishu. All those killed are said to be Al-Shabaab fighters. It is not currently known how the prisoners had access to guns.

And SEND7 podcast will take a short break now, but it will return on the 31st August. To receive an e-mail reminder, join the email list at Thank you very much for supporting SEND7 podcast. See you on 31st August for all of the world’s most important stories, in 7 minutes. I’m Stephen Devincenzi. Have a great day.

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