South Korea coronavirus cases jump by two-thirds in one day

first_imgSouth Korea reported 20 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus on Wednesday — increasing its total by nearly two-thirds — including a cluster of at least 16 centered on the southern city of Daegu.The trade-dependent nation has been hit by the economic fallout from the virus outbreak in neighboring China, but until Wednesday’s jump, its own case numbers had hardly changed for several days.The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said in a statement that 20 new coronavirus cases had been confirmed, raising its total from 31 to 51. Of those, 18 were in Daegu and neighboring North Gyeongsang province, with 15 of them believed to be linked to a single patient, a 61-year-old woman.Fourteen of them attend the same church as the woman, the KCDC said, while the other one had come into contact with her at a hospital.She had first developed a fever on Feb. 10 but reportedly refused to be tested twice for the coronavirus on the grounds that she had not recently travelled abroad.She was not put into quarantine until a week later and was confirmed as the country’s 31st case on Tuesday. Seoul has blocked entry to foreigners coming from Hubei, the Chinese province that is the epicenter of the outbreak, and suspended visa-free entry to the island of Jeju, popular with Chinese tourists, but has not imposed a general ban on arrivals from China.center_img Topics :last_img read more

COVID-19: PKS pushes for lockdown as Jokowi demurs, again

first_imgTopics : Earlier on Tuesday, Jokowi once again said that his administration would not implement a nationwide lockdown and cautioned regional heads who sought to impose stricter movement restrictions in their respective regions.“I have gathered data about countries that have imposed lockdowns and after analyzing them, I don’t think we should go that way,” he said on Tuesday.The COVID-19 outbreak was labeled a global pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11. Indonesia, which announced its first two positive cases on March 2, declared COVID-19 to be “a non-natural national disaster” on March 14. The country has so far recorded 686 positive cases, with 55 deaths.Twenty-four of the country’s 34 provinces had reported COVID-19 cases as of Tuesday. Jakarta is the worst affected area with 424 cases and 31 deaths. It is followed by the neighboring provinces of Banten and West Java, with 65 and 60 cases respectively. The Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) has called on the government to implement a lockdown in order to curb the spread of COVID-19, even as President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo reiterated his opposition to such a policy.”The party has called for a lockdown on various occasions, at least partially, in areas that are the most affected [by the outbreak],” PKS spokesperson Ahmad Fathul Bari said in a statement seen by The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.He said that such a measure was regulated in the 2018 Health Quarantine Law, which specifically states that a lockdown “is an effort to ward off a disease that can potentially cause public health emergencies.”center_img “It’s clear that the current state of the coronavirus can already be categorized as ‘a public health emergency’, so this is the time to implement a lockdown in some of Indonesia’s regions,” Fathul said.Read also: Jokowi must make case for lockdown as COVID-19 may spark social unrest: ReportThe implementation of the lockdown should also be followed by the fulfillment of citizens’ basic needs, including medical and food needs, as stipulated in Article 8 of the law, he added.”If [the Health Quarantine Law] is not carried out, the President is potentially violating the Constitution,” he said.last_img read more

COVID-19: Police disperse thousands of gatherings nationwide since last week

first_imgPolice in Bolang Mongondow regency in North Sulawesi also forced couples to hold off their wedding receptions.Supandri Damogalad of the Bolaang Mongondow Legislative Council said that at least five couples — including his relatives — in the regency’s Lolak village had cancelled their weddings in the past week, even though they had invited guests and set up tents for the events.”Of course we are disappointed but on the other hand we can understand the urgency,” Supandri said on Friday, “It’s better for us to make this sacrifice rather than to sacrifice public interest.”Adj. Comr. Hanny Lukas of the East Dumoga Police said he had also approached a couple and their families in the regency’s Mogoyungung village to cancel their planned wedding this week, as the public should understand the urgency of maintaining physical distancing to stem COVID-10 transmission.”I call for the public not to organize any more large gatherings because [the police] will ensure the gatherings are dispersed,” Hanny said.Furthermore, Argo went on to say that ensuring public health was the top priority for the police at the moment, including by taking actions against the spread of false information about COVID-19 that could risk the safety of the public.By Thursday, the police had identified 46 individuals who had allegedly disseminated false information about the disease. However, Argo did not confirm whether all of them had been named suspects.Wrongdoers could face a maximum penalty of six years’ imprisonment and fines of up to Rp 1 billion as stipulated in Article 28 of the 2016 Information and Electronic Transaction Law if convicted.“We hope that the public can filter any information before sharing it,” he added. (glh)Topics : Police have dispersed up to 1,371 gatherings nationwide within a week since National Police chief Gen. Idham Azis issued an edict banning the public from collecting into crowds to curb the spread of COVID-19.“This number is an accumulation of all reports coming from our regional units. We have been helped by regional administrations and the Indonesian Military when disbursing those gatherings,” National Police spokesperson Sr. Comr. Argo Yuwono said in a press conference on Thursday.In the edict, dated March 19, Idham urged the public to refrain from organizing mass gatherings in public places or private properties, including social meetings, workshops, music festivals, carnivals, sports events, fairs, mass protests and family receptions. The police also plan to press charges against those who persist in gathering in large numbers despite the warnings. The violators would face up to 16 months’ imprisonment or fines of up to Rp 900,000 (US$56.25) as stipulated in articles 212, 216 and 218 of the Criminal Code.However, Argo said the police had so far not filed charges against those who had been involved in mass gatherings, adding that they had been very cooperative when warned by officers.“It is because we took a persuasive approach first when asking them to stop the gatherings. We also warned them that the spread of COVID-19 would spread rampantly if they continue their activities,” he added.Ever since the edict came into force, police officers have started dispersing gatherings and crowds during their patrols in various places across the country.Read also: COVID-19: Local authorities scramble to prevent wider transmission as ‘mudik’ starts earlyIn East Java’s Blitar city, for instance, authorities dispersed crowds of people hanging out in cafes and told them to go home, while calling for the public to take their food and drinks back to their homes instead of eating outside.last_img read more

Pandemic spells death sentence for India’s non-virus patients

first_imgMany of them had travelled from other cities for now-cancelled appointments and can’t go back due to transport restrictions under the nationwide lockdown that began on March 25.Outpatient departments at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) closed, forcing cancer patients and others with deadly ailments to take shelter in a grimy pedestrian subway and under canvas.Though aid groups have provided some food and medicines, it had been 12 hours since Saryu Das had eaten when AFP met him.His son, who had mouth cancer, lay on a thin mattress with his face covered by a scarf. Flies hovered around him. Four days later, he died.Waste littered the subway floor that is now home to more than 10 families unable to get back to their hometowns, with the mattresses so close that social distancing was impossible.The AIIMS did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the death and the patients outside. But hospitals across the vast country of 1.3 billion people have been put on alert and its virus death toll is now above 280.When Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the lockdown, he gave millions of Indians taking life-saving drugs only four hours’ notice.Amulya Nidhi, a health activist based in Madhya Pradesh state, told AFP the government knew that vulnerable patients -– including those with silicosis and tuberculosis, which kills tens of thousands each year in India, as well as pregnant women — were at risk.”I’m getting distress calls from across India over access to basic medicines and treatment,” said Nidhi.”It is important to expand healthcare facilities to fight COVID-19. At the same time, hospitals and ambulances have to be available for patients with other problems,” he said.In February, 39-year-old Maitri Lakra was found to be in the initial stages of tongue cancer. Being HIV-positive only added to her woes.Doctors at AIIMS referred her to their campus in Haryana state for pre-surgery tests, which started mid-March. But 10 days later, she was told that all radiology appointments were postponed.As her condition deteriorated -– bleeding from the tongue and in unbearable pain -– she filed a petition with the Delhi High Court and has finally been admitted to AIIMS.”Her cancer is at stage three now. Had she received treatment on time, this would not have happened,” her son Debashish Dag said.Vinay Shetty, from the Mumbai-based Think Foundation that works with people with the blood disease thalassaemia and organises blood donation camps, said those needing transfusions are among the most vulnerable.”Those needing drugs may not have a problem, but anybody needing blood will,” Shetty said, adding the government had to encourage blood donors.Public health expert Anant Bhan said India’s focus on COVID-19 could lead to other diseases such as tuberculosis spreading.”Family members in lockdown with tuberculosis patients are at risk. After the lockdown is removed and people start social interactions, it could spread the infection the same way COVID-19 patients could spread infection,” Bhan said.”Deaths because of COVID-19 and not directly of it is something that we need to worry about. We need to ensure those who need essential services have it,” he said.And time is already running out for Shahjahan’s fellow patients in the subway and tents outside AIIMS.”The doctors told me they could not do my chemotherapy session now and that they’ll call me when the lockdown is lifted. That call may take weeks,” said 25-year old Rampur resident Mohammed Shan-e-Alam.”Now I can’t go home and I can’t go to the hospital.”Topics : “The authorities just left her to die. Even when they referred us to another hospital, they refused to give us an ambulance,” said Mohammad Khalid, a relative of Shahjahan.The capacity of medical facilities around the world has been stretched by the surge of COVID-19 patients as outbreaks worsen in many countries.It can cause people with other life-threatening diseases to miss out on vital care — especially in places like India, where healthcare systems are shakier.Dozens of people with serious medical conditions are camped outside India’s national medical institute in tents set up by the Delhi government. Liver patient Shahjahan’s family feared the worst when a New Delhi public hospital told her to leave because her bed was needed in a coronavirus unit.The 40-year-old mother had been on a ventilator with an acute infection for almost two weeks when she left Lok Nayak hospital on Tuesday night.She died at her family home in Delhi the next morning. Other hospitals had turned her away because of the pandemic.last_img read more

Editing history: Hong Kong publishers self-censor under new security law

first_imgThe Hong Kong Trade Development Council, which organizes the annual Hong Kong Book Fair, told exhibitors not to display what it called “unlawful books” at this week’s planned fair, but did not explain further.The council postponed the fair at the last minute on Monday due to a recent spike in cases of the new coronavirus. It did not specify a new date for the event, which draws about 1 million visitors.Three non-governmental pro-Beijing groups had teamed up to urge people to report stalls at the fair selling material promoting Hong Kong independence, a subject that is anathema to the Chinese government.”Every citizen has a duty to report crime,” said Innes Tang, the chairman of PolitiHK Social Strategic, one group behind the campaign. “We are not the police. We are not the ones to say where the red line is.”Dangerous readingJimmy Pang, a veteran local publisher who has participated in every fair since it began in 1990, called 2020 “the most terrifying year” because of the security law and the economic downturn that was already hurting publishers.He said the law has prompted publishing houses and writers to halt projects while printers, distributors, and bookstores have turned down sensitive books.For example, Breakazine, a local Christian publication, said it suspended the distribution of its mid-July issue called “Dangerous Reading” while seeking legal advice for navigating the security law.”Everyone is avoiding risks by suffering in silence,” said Pang, a spokesman for 50 exhibitors at the fair.Last year, a unit of Pang’s Sub-Culture Ltd published Chan Yun-chi’s “6430,” a book of interviews with surviving pro-democracy protesters in the run-up to the 30th anniversary of the bloody 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown, a subject heavily censored on the mainland.”In the future, there will be no sensitive books related to politics,” he said.Bao Pu, the son of Bao Tong, the most senior Chinese Communist Party official jailed for sympathizing with Tiananmen protesters, founded New Century Press in 2005 in Hong Kong to publish books based on memoirs and government documents and other sources that often differ from the official versions of events in China and could not be published on the mainland.His customers were mostly mainland visitors, a lucrative niche in Hong Kong until China began to tighten border controls a decade ago, making it harder to bring back books to the mainland.Given the drop off in demand, Bao said he no longer plans to publish such books in Hong Kong. But he urged other publishers to avoid self-censorship.”If everybody does that, then the law would have much more impact on freedom of speech,” he said. “This is history. This is the truth,” he said, holding up the book with blue sticky flags on many pages to mark changes made because of the new law.Just as demand for political books was surging in Hong Kong after a year of protests, Hong Kong’s once unbridled and prolific independent publishers are now censoring themselves in the face of the new law.Hong Kong authorities say freedom of speech remains intact, but in the past two weeks public libraries have taken some books off the shelves, shops have removed protest-related decorations and the slogan “Liberate Hong Kong! Revolution of our times” has been declared illegal.”To Freedom” is the first political book Yeung has taken on as a part-time publisher. After Beijing introduced the security law, the book’s original printer bailed, and two other printers declined, he said. Another printer agreed to take it anonymously, but wants to get a better sense of how the law is implemented first. Topics :center_img In the last two weeks, Hong Kong publisher Raymond Yeung has hastily made changes to a draft paper copy of a book entitled “To Freedom,” replacing the word “revolution” with “protests,” tweaking a banned slogan and cutting passages that advocate independence for the Chinese-ruled city.The changes were hard to make, he told Reuters, but impossible to avoid since China passed a national security law on June 30, making the broadly defined crimes of secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces punishable by up to life in prison.”This is really painful,” Yeung said as he flipped through pages of the collection of essays by 50 protesters, lawyers, social workers and other participants in the pro-democracy demonstrations that shook Hong Kong last year.last_img read more

UN aid chief to G20 on coronavirus: ‘Step up now or pay price later’

first_imgCoronavirus support to poor countries has been so far “grossly inadequate and that’s dangerously shortsighted,” UN aid chief Mark Lowcock said on Thursday as he asked wealthy countries for billions more dollars in assistance.The United Nations increased its humanitarian appeal by more than a third to $10.3 billion to help 63 states, mainly in Africa and Latin America, tackle the spread and destabilizing effects of the coronavirus. This is up from the world body’s initial $2 billion request in March, then $6.7 billion in May.So far, Lowcock said, the United Nations has only received $1.7 billion. As finance ministers from the Group of 20 major economies prepare to meet virtually on Saturday, Lowcock told reporters: “The message to the G20 is step up now or pay the price later.”The coronavirus has infected at least 13.6 million people and there have been more than 584,000 known deaths worldwide, according to a Reuters tally. The United Nations has warned that if action is not taken, the pandemic and associated global recession will trigger an increase in global poverty for the first time since 1990 and push 265 million people to the brink of starvation.”The response so far of wealthy nations, who’ve rightly thrown out the fiscal and monetary rule books to protect their own people and economies, the response that they’ve made to the situations in other countries has been grossly inadequate and that’s dangerously shortsighted,” Lowcock said.Lowcock added he had lobbied US lawmakers for funding earlier this week. A House of Representatives committee has proposed $10 billion in international aid. So far, Congress has provided $2.4 billion in emergency foreign aid.In May, China’s President Xi Jinping pledged $2 billion to help deal with the coronavirus and economic and social development in affected countries, especially developing states.Lowcock said he would “very much welcome it if some significant proportion of those resources could be used directly to support the global humanitarian response plan.”Topics :last_img read more

Viral videos show Indonesian crew pleading for help aboard Chinese fishing vessel

first_imgThe sailors said they had worked on the ship for ten months and had yet to receive any payment“Our contract ends in November 2021, but we can’t wait that long. We could die here,” one of the men said.“Please help us, Pak,” they said multiple times.The video, first posted by Instagram account @infogeh, has been shared numerous times and has garnered hundreds of comments, mostly condemning the apparent abuse and similar incidents aboard other Chinese fishing vessels. The Foreign Ministry said it had received a report and was looking into the matter.Read also: Indonesia reiterates concern about alleged mistreatment of crewmen on Chinese vessels“[We] have coordinated with the Transportation Ministry and the Manpower Ministry, which issues permits for Indonesians to work as crew members on ships abroad,” Foreign Ministry director for the protection of citizens and legal entities overseas Judha Nugraha said in a statement on Wednesday.Judha said the ministry had not received any response from PT Raja Crew Atlantik (RCA), the recruiting agency mentioned in the caption of the viral video.According to data from the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Liao Yuan Yu 103, the fishing vessel mentioned in the post, is owned by Liaoning Kimliner Ocean Fishing Co. Ltd. in Dalian city, China.Judha said the ministry had coordinated with the Indonesian Embassy in Beijing to seek confirmation from the fishing vessel’s owner and Chinese authorities.“We will keep trying to call the first party that uploaded the video on social media to get more detailed information,” he said.This incident is the latest in a string of alleged abuse aboard Chinese fishing vessels. In July, an Indonesian crew member was found dead in the freezer of vessel Lu Huang Yuan Yu 117. In May, a video appeared on Facebook showing a group of sailors on Lu Qing Yuan Yu 623 throwing the body of an Indonesian sailor into the sea. Prior to that, there was public outrage at the death of four Indonesian sailors registered to another Chinese fishing ship.According to Destructive Fishing Watch (DFW) data, at least 30 Indonesian crew members were victims of exploitation aboard Chinese fishing vessels between November 2019 to June 2020, seven of whom have died and three of whom are missing. Videos apparently showing four Indonesian crew members begging to be rescued from abuse aboard a Chinese fishing vessel have gone viral on social media, the latest in a series of alleged abuses aboard such vessels. “Please get us off this ship immediately. We are being physically abused here. We were kicked, beaten, and they even threatened to stab us,” one crew member said in the video. Another said that the crew was being punched and kicked every day.“We are only given four to five hours to rest, and we work for more than 20 hours every day. If we don’t work, they will not give us any food. We are starving,” the man said. center_img Topics :last_img read more

Ministry aims to finish 1,000-hour B40 biodiesel road test this year

first_imgRead also: Indonesia’s B40 biodiesel plan back on track after palm oil prices improve“Gaikindo asks to be given time to prepare for the implementation of B40,” he told The Jakarta Post.The ministry tested the previous B20 and B30 biofuels by driving vehicles thousands of kilometers, but both Gaikindo and Indonesian Bioenergy Expert Association (IKABI) greenlighted the static test method, considering the country was still partially locked down.Read also: After five-month road test, B30 implementation gets green light“For the time being, we won’t test on the road. That’s rather difficult. There are still concerns,” said ministry research head Dadan Kusdiana on Wednesday, adding that his department was also conducting early B50 tests. “We are now testing the two engines’ durability [when using B40],” she said during a virtual media visit.The government plans to make the use of B40 biodiesel mandatory starting in July 2021 to cut Indonesia’s oil imports, which is a major contributor to the country’s overall imports bill.The ministry is testing two B40 variations: one being regular diesel mixed with 40 percent fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) – a substance derived from palm oil – and the second being mixed with 30 percent FAME and 10 percent distilled FAME, which is hoped to reduce damage.However, Indonesian Automakers Association (Gaikindo) chairman Jongkie Sugiarto previously signaled that carmakers were not on board with the B40 plan.  Topics :center_img Indonesia plans to complete two key tests for its domestically produced palm oil-based biodiesel by November this year, as the world’s top palm oil producing country prepares to move ahead with the 40 percent biodiesel blend (B40).The test involves running two static diesel engines on the lower-emission fuel for 1,000 hours inside the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry’s research and development lab, said lead researcher Sylvia Ayu Bethari on Aug. 26.She and her team are testing the engines’ fuel consumption, emissions and power levels, among other performance indicators. The biofuel is notorious among commercial vehicle operators for damaging engines. last_img read more

Mesut Ozil not spotted with Arsenal squad boarding plane before BATE Borisov Europa League match

first_img Video Settings / 1 min. story struggling Manchester United captain Harry… Coming Next by Metro PLAY Aaron Ramsey, whose summer transfer to Juventus was confirmed earlier this week, is still nursing a knee injury and hasn’t travelled but there is a place for January loan signing Denis Suarez who is in line to make his full debut.Arsenal qualified for the knockout stages of the Europa League by winning five of their six group stage matches and finishing above Sporting Lisbon.The Gunners reached the semi finals of the same competition last season before losing to eventual winners Atletico Madrid and will be hopeful of going one better under Unai Emery who won the tournament three times during his Sevilla tenure.More: Manchester United FCRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseEx-Man Utd coach blasts Ed Woodward for two key transfer errors Top articles 1/1 Rio Ferdinand tells Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Full Screen Skip Granit Xhaka is back in the Arsenal squad having recovered from a slight knee injury (Picture: Getty) Read More New signing Denis Suarez could make his full debut (Picture: Getty)Sokratis Papastathopoulos also trained yesterday but appears not to have been risked having only just recovered from the ankle injury he suffered during last month’s FA Cup defeat against Manchester United.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Read More Read More Read More About Connatix V67539 Visit Advertiser website GO TO PAGE Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 13 Feb 2019 3:39 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link833Shares Lucas Torreira celebrated his 23rd birthday earlier this week (Picture: Getty)Mesut Ozil appears to have been left out of the Arsenal squad ahead of Thursday’s Europa League clash against BATE Borisov on Thursday.The former Real Madrid star missed Saturday’s win over Huddersfield, officially through illness, but took a full part in first team training yesterday and was listed as being available for selection by the club’s website.Ozil, who has featured just twice since Boxing Day, posted a video on his Instagram account of himself driving his car while his teammates were photographed boarding the flight bound for Belarus at Luton airport.More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City Comment Mesut Ozil not spotted with Arsenal squad boarding plane before BATE Borisov Europa League match Read More Advertisement SPONSORED Skip Adlast_img read more

Arsenal and Manchester United in race to sign Real Madrid midfielder Marcos Llorente

first_imgMarcos Llorente is wanted by Arsenal and Manchester United (Getty Images)Arsenal and Manchester United have launched offers to sign Marcos Llorente from Real Madrid, according to reports in Spain.The 24-year-old has barely featured for Madrid this season, starting just five games in La Liga and another two in the Champions League.Llorente is keen to leave Madrid this summer and is keen on a move to the Premier League.According to AS, the midfielder has already received proposals from both Arsenal and United, while Roma have also expressed an interest.ADVERTISEMENTZinedine Zidane, who faces a major rebuild at Madrid this summer, will allow Llorente to leave the club. Metro Sport ReporterThursday 9 May 2019 8:02 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link21Shares Llorente has made only 13 appearances for Madrid this season (Getty Images)The Spaniard, who joined Madrid’s academy at the age of 13, will have two years remaining on his current contract at the end of the season.AdvertisementAdvertisementSpeaking about Llorente’s future last month, Zidane suggested that the midfielder was not in his plans for next season.‘I’ve known Marcos for a long time, he is a player that is constantly improving,’ said the Madrid boss.More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City‘The only thing for him is that he needs to play more because that will help him.‘I remember when he was at Alaves [on loan], he played regularly and he had a phenomenal season there.’More: Manchester United FCRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseEx-Man Utd coach blasts Ed Woodward for two key transfer errors Arsenal and Manchester United in race to sign Real Madrid midfielder Marcos Llorente Advertisement Comment Advertisementlast_img read more