COVID-19 and vaccination:
Algeria: Algeria confirms two new cases of the UK variant.
Libya: Libya reports 23 cases of the UK strain
Jordan: The National Center for Security and Crisis Management announced a total lockdown every Friday will be imposed until further notice. The country has recorded 22 deaths and 4,024 new COVID-19.
Palestine: Palestine today recorded 2,100 new Covid-19 cases and 11 deaths as the nation has entered its third wave of the pandemic.
Lebanon: The World Bank has threatened to halt finance for Lebanon’s coronavirus vaccine rollout amid allegations members of parliament “skipped the line” and were inoculated without registering in advance.
Moderna: Moderna will begin the clinical trial of its COVID-19 vaccine’s new version, designed to target the virus variant first discovered in South Africa, the company unveiled on Wednesday.
J&J: The United States Food and Drug Administration’s staff endorsed the Johnson & Johnson single shot coronavirus vaccine for emergency use authorization on Wednesday following a detailed analysis of the jab.
U.S:A new coronavirus variant that shares some similarities with a more transmissible and intractable variant found in South Africa is on the rise in New York City, researchers said on Wednesday.
Yemen:conflict-torn Yemen “is falling off a cliff” and will face the worst famine the world has seen for decades unless donors, and especially its Gulf neighbours, contribute generously to this year’s U.N. humanitarian appeal for $3.85 billion, the U.N. humanitarian chief warned Wednesday. Mark Lowcock said Gulf countries, especially Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which contributed generously to U.N. appeals in 2018 and 2019, cut back drastically last year. This forced aid agencies to reduce the number of Yemenis receiving food and other humanitarian aid from 13-14 million every month in 2019 to just 9 million in 2020, he said. The 4 million people who didn’t receive food last year “are among those essentially in the long, slow, brutal, painful, agonizing process of starving to death,” Lowcock told a virtual briefing for a group of reporters.
U.S-American Senator Bernie Sanders Wednesday slammed the Israeli Occupation for its mishandling of coronavirus vaccines.
“As the occupying power, Israel is responsible for the health of all the people under its control. It is outrageous that Netanyahu would use spare vaccines to reward his foreign allies while so many Palestinians in the occupied territories are still waiting,” wrote Sanders on Twitter.
Saudi Arabia:A declassified version of a U.S. intelligence report expected to be released on Thursday finds that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman approved the 2018 killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, four U.S. officials familiar with the matter said.
The officials said the report, for which the CIA was the main contributor, assessed that the crown prince approved and likely ordered the murder of Khashoggi, whose Washington Post column had criticized the crown prince’s policies, Reuters reported.
Australia: A wild sheep found wandering the wilderness of the Australian bush has been sheared off a huge 35-kilogram (77-pound) coat after an estimated five years of unchecked growth.
China-Chinese President Xi Jinping celebrated “complete victory” in the effort to eradicate rural poverty at a ceremony in Beijing on Thursday to mark a signature initiative of his eight-year tenure, Reuters reported.
State media credit Xi’s leadership with lifting nearly 100 million people from poverty, a milestone he declared in December and framed as a birthday gift for this year’s 100th anniversary of the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
“The CCP’s leadership and China’s socialist system are the fundamental guarantees against risks, challenges and difficulties,” Xi said in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, where he presented medals to key figures in the poverty fight.
Indonesia : An illegal gold mine in Indonesia’s Sulawesi island collapsed on nearly two dozen people working inside, killing three and leaving another five missing, officials said Thursday.
Survivors estimated about 23 people were trapped in the rubble when the mine in Central Sulawesi province’s Parigi Moutong district collapsed late Wednesday due to unstable soil, said Andrias Hendrik Johannes, who heads the local search and rescue agency,Associated Press reported.