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Wednesday 27th May 2020

Brazil’s COVID19 deaths could pass 125,000 by August according to a study by the University of Washington. On Monday Brazil reported the highest number of daily deaths in the world, with 807, however, the university says that this number will probably continue to rise until mid-july. At the moment 23,600 people are confirmed to have died of COVID19 in Brazil, and 378,000 cases have been confirmed, but the real number is expected to be far higher, as testing rates are very low. President Jair Bolsonaro has been criticised nationally and internationally for not taking the pandemic seriously. On Sunday Bolsonaro met crowds of his supporters, shook hands, and embraced them. The governor of Sao Paolo Joao Doria said yesterday that Brazil is fighting two viruses…

“With the bad examples of the president of Brazil, everything is more difficult to us. When we suggest we oriented people to stay hom to use masks, to respect the medicine, to not us chloroquine as a solution for the coronavirus, the president of brazil use the opposite message to the people, so it becomes very difficult for us, in fact, we have today two viruses, the coronavirus, and the bolsonaro virus.”


Latin America is now confirming higher numbers of COVID 19 infections than Europe or the US. Mexico, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras and Peru have reported fast rises in the last few days. In Chile yesterday health officials said that 95% of the intensive care beds were occupied, despite Chile having doubled the capacity of intensive care since March. The Pan American Health Organization say that Latin America’s pandemic is 6 weeks behind Europe.


In The United States 100,000 people are confirmed to have died from COVID19. Yesterday President Trump’s assistant, Kayleigh McEnany, said that 100,000 was much less than what was expected, and said that President Trump’s decision has saved hundreds of thousands of lives…

“I think Dr Burke said it best when she said that in their estimates they had anywhere between 1.5 and 2.2 million people in the US succumbing to the virus if we didn’t shut down the economy. The president made the very hard choice of shutting down the economy, so we avoided that very high number.”


Asia

The World Health Organization has recommended Indonesia to stop using hydroxychloroquine to treat coronavirus. A study by the Lancet medical Journal showed an increase in deaths from people taking the malaria-drug. Indonesia, Brazil and India have recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine, and US President Trump has said that he is taking it himself.

In Afghanistan, 900 Taliban prisoners have been released by the government. Yesterday was the last day of a three-day ceasefire between the government and the Taliban. In 19 years of war, this is only the second ceasefire. Many afghanis hope that this could be the start of a longer peace process.


Russian president Vladamir Putin has said that Russia has ‘passed its peak’ of the coronavirus pandemic. Russia has confirmed 360,000 cases of COVID19, however, its confirmed death rate is relatively low, compared to countries with similar levels of infection.


Syria has relaxed its lockdown restrictions. People will be able to go outside at night, mosques and shops can open and travel between provinces is now permitted.


In Hong Kong, the Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, has defended the new National Security Laws from China. People are worried that the new law will give too much power to Beijing, but Lam said that this was not true…


Be assured that Hong Kong’s freedoms will be preserve and Hong Kong’s vibrancy and core values in terms of the rules of law, the independence of the judiciary and the various rights and freedom enjoyed by people will continue to be there.”

Europe

Spain has declared 10 days of mourning, for the 27,000 people who died of COVID 19. Germany will extend its social distancing rules to June 29th. In the UK the popularity of Prime Minister Boris Johnson has fallen to its lowest level ever, after a scandal involving his top advisor. And in Italy, the colosseum in Rome will reopen on the 1st June, after being closed for 3 months

Africa

50 Nigerian women have been freed from Lebanon. Nigerian women are often trafficked to Lebanon with the promise of jobs, but may be exploited in low paid jobs, or be forced into prostitution.


Zambia’s president Edgar Lungu has pardoned a gay couple who were prisoned for 15 years. The men were jailed last year and US ambassador to Zambia Daniel Foote, asked for the men to be released.


Monday was Africa day. Over 200 African channels broadcast a virtual concert including some of Africa’s most popular musicians, such as Senegalese, Youssou N’dour, Congolese Fally Ipupa and Nigeria’s Wizkid…

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