Coronavirus: the European Union reopens its borders, the WHO pessimistic

EU countries have agreed to reopen the borders of the Union and the Schengen area from Wednesday to travelers from a list of 15 countries, which includes China conditionally, but which excludes the United States , according to an official statement released Tuesday. This list of countries, whose epidemiological situation linked to Covid-19 disease is considered to be sufficiently safe for resumption of travel, must be updated every two weeks. It also includes Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and the Uruguay.

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This positive development in Europe should not, however, be an illusion: globally the pandemic, which has just crossed two symbolic thresholds, more than half a million deaths and ten million cases – “is far from over” and ” is accelerating, “warned the World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday.

” The worse is yet to come “

“We all want it all to end. We all want to take back our lives. But the harsh reality is that it is far from over, ”warned the Director General of the Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. The virus continues to wreak havoc in South America, the United States and seems to be restarting in China, and in a “divided world” and faced with “a lack of national unity and global solidarity (…) the worst is to come, “he warned.

WHO will send a team “next week” to China, where this coronavirus appeared in December, to determine its origin and better understand it. The head of the organization called on governments and citizens to put in place “simple solutions” in order to “save lives now”: “test, trace, isolate, and quarantine cases”.

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According to a count made by Agence France-Presse from official sources, but which experts believe largely underestimated, 502,599 deaths and 10.2 million cases were officially listed on Monday evening. The number of deaths worldwide has doubled in just under two months (250,000 on May 5) and an additional 50,000 have been recorded in the past ten days.

A British city is reconfigured

Europe is the continent with the most deaths (196,428 for 2,660,794 cases), followed by the United States / Canada zone (134,538, 2,667,981), Latin America and the Caribbean (112,321, 2,491,030), Asia (33,689, 1,251,153), the Middle East (15,819, 743,172), Africa (9,671, 385,166) and Oceania (133, 9,244). The United States is the country most affected, both in number of deaths (126,123) and cases (2,587,154). Although the number of daily deaths decreased slightly in June compared to the previous month, contagion is increasing in 30 of the 50 states, particularly in the largest and most populous (California, Texas, Florida). Closed since March, the famous Broadway theaters in New York will not reopen until January 2021.

In Britain, where the disease has killed 43,575 people and whose GDP is expected to shrink by more than 10% this year, Prime Minister Boris Johnson will unveil on Tuesday a “Rooseveltian” plan to revive the economy. “We are going to build, build, build. Rebuild better, rebuild greener, rebuild faster, “said the conservative leader in a speech in Dudley (center), according to extracts disseminated by his services. He plans to infuse five billion pounds (5.4 billion euros) in infrastructure projects. The British government announced on Monday evening the tightening of containment in Leicester due to an outbreak of cases in this city in central England, the first to be imposed local restrictions.

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Franco-German call

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron urged European countries, particularly the “frugal”, on Monday to reach an agreement on the relaunch of the European Union at the July summit. “We are facing economic challenges that we have never known in decades, and probably in all history,” launched the Chancellor, at the dawn of a German presidency of the EU which decisive announcement. “We hope that we will find a solution” from the European Council of 17 and 18 July, which will concern the adoption of the recovery plan of 750 billion euros proposed by the European Commission, “even if there is still a long way to go “, She argued.

Cradle of the pandemic in Wuhan, in the center of the country, China believed to be finished with the virus, but it reappeared in mid-June in Beijing, to the point that the authorities closed schools and placed in confinement several thousand of people. Beijing has given the green light to use a vaccine designed by a military research institute and the pharmaceutical company CanSinoBIO on soldiers from the country.

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Towards a return to normalcy in South Korea

Scientists from Chinese universities released a study in a US scientific journal on Monday describing a strain of swine flu virus found in China that has the characteristics to cause a future pandemic. The viruses are called G4 and are genetically descended from the H1N1 strain, which caused a pandemic in 2009: they “possess all the essential traits showing high adaptability for infecting humans”, write the authors.

In Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his country is preparing for a second wave “that could hit very hard”. Quebec has more than half of the 103,000 cases of coronavirus and 8,600 deaths in the country. In contrast, South Korea continues to return to normal. She managed to control the situation thanks to a very advanced strategy of testing and tracing the contacts of infected people, without even imposing confinement.

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