Coronavirus latest: Ten million kids ′may never return to school′ after virus | News | DW | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children

  • NGO Save the Children has declared an “unprecedented education emergency”
  • Amnesty says governments are failing to provide adequate protection for health workers
  • Firms worldwide are expected to take on $1 trillion of new corporate debt in 2020

All updates in Universal Coordinated Time (UTC/GMT) 

6:03 The Hong Kong book fair, which attracts 1 million visitors annually, has been postponed due to a recent surge in locally transmitted coronavirus cases.

The Hong Kong Trade Development Council said the fair, set to kick off on Wednesday, will be rescheduled to a future, unspecified date. Three other fairs and expos in July have also been postponed.

Hong Kong reported 38 new cases of the coronavirus on Sunday, 30 of which were local infections. The city has reported 1,470 cases and seven deaths since the pandemic began.

5:55 South Korean health authorities said one in three patients seriously ill from the coronavirus showed improvement after being given the antiviral drug remdesivir.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control (KCDC) said that of results from the first group of 27 patients in different hospitals, nine showed improvement, 15 showed no change and three worsened after being given the drug.

The result of the study had yet to be compared with a control group to determine whether the improvement was due to the drug or other factors, such as patient’s immunity and other therapies, KCDC deputy director Kwon Jun-wook said.

Several countries, including South Korea, have added remdesivir to a list of approved treatments for COVID-19. Gilead Sciences Inc., the company which developed the drug, said it’s latest update helped reduce the risk of death in several seriously ill patients, but warned that several clinical trials were still needed to show its benefit. 

5:41 India has reported another single-day record of coronavirus cases, recording 28,701 new cases over the previous 24 hours to raise national total to 878,254 cases. 

The country’s Health Ministry also reported 500 new deaths, increasing the national total to 23,174.

New Dehli, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore and Pune are among the key cities where the outbreak has been most prominent. States have reinstituted lockdown measures after relaxing them in an attempt to bolster an ailing economy.

India has reported record surges each of the past four days. It has the third most cases worldwide behind the United States and Brazil.

4:47 Costa Rica will begin negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in order to access a financial aid package aimed at offsetting the economic blow of the coronavirus pandemic on the Central American nation, President Carlos Alvarado has said.

The president did not divulge the size of the package, but local media reports citing central bank sources said the aid could be around $2.25 billion (€1.99 billion).

The deal would help to offset shrinking government revenue. Costa Rica’s 2020 deficit is on course to exceed 9.7% of gross domestic product, the country’s Finance Ministry said.

“The extreme situation that COVID-19 has generated makes this agreement with the Fund essential to maintain the country’s economic stability in the coming years,” the president said on national television.

It is still too early to know what Costa Rica’s obligations would be in the deal, the president said, but it would include reducing spending, increasing revenue, and streamlining public management.

“These details will be discussed not only with the IMF but also with key political actors such as the Legislative Assembly,” he said.

As of Sunday night, Costa Rica had reported 7,596 cases of coronavirus, including 30 deaths.

4:37 In Australia, one out of 20 women has experienced domestic violence since the coronavirus pandemic began, a new survey has revealed.

The authors of the report by the Australian Institute of Criminology said increased time at home, social isolation, and financial stresses had all contributed to the statistic, based on an online survey of 15,000 women conducted in May.

According to the survey, 4.6% of all respondents — or 20% — said they had experienced physical or sexual violence at the hand of a current or former live-in partner since February.

Of those women, two-thirds said the violence had started or escalated since coronavirus lockdowns and job losses began.

Of women who live with their partner, 8.8% said they had experienced domestic violence.

“It appears likely that the conditions and consequences associated with the COVID-19 pandemic contributed to an increase in domestic violence,” the report’s authors concluded.

The survey also revealed that 5.8% of women were victims of coercive control, while 11.6% of all women and 22.4% of women who live with their partner experienced emotionally abusive, harassing and controlling behaviors.

03:54 Japan and the US are exchanging information about a recent coronavirus outbreak at US military bases in Okinawa prefecture, a government spokesperson has said.

“Japan and the US are sharing information about activity history of infected military individuals,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at a news briefing, after 62 new cases were confirmed at three US bases.

Local authorities said that nine people at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, 22 people in Camp Hansen and one person in Camp Kinser had tested positive for COVID-19 between July 7 to July 12.

03:46 Argentina has so far registered more than 100,000 COVID-19 cases, its Ministry of Health said, despite the Buenos Aires area — the country’s coronavirus hot spot — being under extended shutdown. The country now has recorded 1,845 deaths from the pandemic with 100,153 positive cases and almost 43,000 people recovered.

The shutdown in the Buenos Aires area, the most populated region of the country, is due to end on Friday. Authorities are still debating what restrictions will remain in place, though the reopening of some shops and permits to run in parks are expected.

03:27 The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany has increased by 159 to 198,963, according to the latest data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases. The tally showed Germany’s reported death toll rose by one to 9,064.

03:16 Australia’s most populous state, New South Wales, has recorded 14 new cases of COVID-19, with a growing cluster at a southwest Sydney pub used by freight drivers traveling around the country triggering fears of a second national wave of the disease. 

Authorities have expressed concerns about surging cases of community transmission — which accounted for eight of the 14 new cases in New South Wales in the last 24 hours, while the rest were people who have returned from overseas or have returned from the neighboring state of Victoria. The majority of these community cases were people who recently visited the Crossroads Hotel pub, taking the cluster to 13 in all. 

“The concern is that this hotel is used by freight drivers who are transporting essential supplies across the country,” Australia’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer Michael Kidd told local media. “They are not being tested.” Meanwhile, Victoria reported 177 new infections in the past 24 hours. The state which holds Australia’s second most populated city, Melbourne, last week forced some five million people back into lockdown after a jump in new COVID-19 cases.

02:17 Cuba has sent a team of 115 doctors and nurses to Azerbaijan to help the country fight the health crisis, marking the first time Cuban health professionals are serving the Central Asian country.

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez tweeted that the “Henry Reeve” brigade “will share Cuba’s experience to fight the pandemic and strengthen cooperation that such times demand.”

Azerbaijan has registered more than 23,500 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, with 298 deaths. 

The first group of Cuban health workers deployed abroad amid the outbreak were sent to the northern Italian region of Lombardy where the brigade stayed for more than two months. Since then, Cuban health workers have traveled to some 30 countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Europe and the Middle East — at the request of the authorities of those nations — to help in the fight against the pandemic.

02:01 Mexico’s death toll from the coronavirus crossed that of Italy on Sunday, according to data from the country’s Health Ministry. Mexico reported 276 additional deaths on Sunday, taking its total to 35,006. Mexico is now behind the US, Brazil and the UK in number of deaths.

The country recorded 4,482 new infections on Sunday and now has 299,750 confirmed cases of the coronavirus. Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Sunday that the “conservative media” was causing alarm about the pandemic. He claimed that the pandemic was “losing intensity” in Mexico.

01:30 The US recorded 59,747 new cases of the coronavirus over the past 24 hours, according to the latest data released by the Maryland-based Johns Hopkins University. The country has so far registered a total of 3.3 million infections. The country’s death toll rose by 442 to 135,171.

The surge in infections comes at a time when President Donald Trump’s administration is pressing for school reopenings in the fall. But the surge in cases has forced some state governors to retreat from earlier efforts to reopen their economies, with some now embracing the wearing of masks.

01:05 Many governments worldwide are failing to provide adequate protection for frontline health workers, Amnesty International has warned. The global rights organization said a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff was found in almost all of the 63 countries and regions surveyed for Amnesty’s report, “Exposed, silenced, attacked.”

The group said it had collected reports of some 3,000 deaths of health workers in 79 countries, but said that the true death toll is likely to be much higher. It also highlighted other concerns such as long work hours, low pay and punishment for those who speak out against poor working conditions.

Amnesty said Russia and the UK had reported the highest numbers of deaths linked to COVID-19 infections among health workers, with at least 545 deaths in Russia and 540 in the UK. The study also confirmed that some groups of health workers were disproportionately affected by the pandemic, citing workers from Black and other ethnic minorities in the UK, examples from India’s Dalit community and workers from Finland’s Somali community.

00:45 Companies worldwide will take on a record $1 trillion (€880 billion) of new corporate debt in 2020 as they try to hold up their finances against the coronavirus pandemic, a new study of 900 top firms has estimated.   

The increase will see a total global corporate debt jump by 12% to around $9.3 trillion (€8.2 trillion) as the virus absorbs profits.

“COVID has changed everything,” said Seth Meyer, a manager at Janus Henderson, the company that compiled the analysis for a new corporate debt index. “Now it is about conserving capital and building a fortified balance sheet.”

Companies included in the new debt index already owe almost 40% more than they did in 2014, and growth in debt has outstripped growth in profits. US companies owe almost half of the world’s corporate debt at $3.9 trillion.

Germany comes in at number two at $762 billion. It also has three of the world’s most indebted companies including the most indebted, Volkswagen, with $192 billion of debt.

00:27 British charity Save the Children has declared an “unprecedented education emergency” due to the global coronavirus pandemic. Up to 9.7 million children worldwide affected by school closures are at risk of never returning to class, the charity warned.

Citing UNESCO data, the NGO said that 1.6 billion young people were shut out of school and university in April due to COVID-19 restrictions — about 90% of the world’s total student population. “For the first time in human history, an entire generation of children globally have had their education disrupted,” the charity said in a new report entitled “Save our Education.”

According to the report, the economic downturn of the pandemic could push an additional 90 to 117 million children into poverty, with a knock-on effect on school admissions and attendance. Many young people could be forced into work or early marriage to support families, resulting in between seven and 9.7 million children dropping out of school permanently.

Save the Children also said the coronavirus crisis could lead to a shortfall of $77 billion (€68 billion) in education budgets in low- and middle-income countries by the end of 2021. “Around 10 million children may never return to school — this is an unprecedented education emergency and governments must urgently invest in learning,” Save the Children Chief Executive Inger Ashing said.

The charity listed 12 countries where children are most at risk: Niger, Mali, Chad, Liberia, Afghanistan, Guinea, Mauritania, Yemen, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal and Ivory Coast.

Read more: How coronavirus is affecting underprivileged children in India

00:00 Catch up on Sunday’s coronavirus news here: Coronavirus latest: WHO logs record daily rise in cases

In reporting on the coronavirus pandemic, unless otherwise specified, DW uses figures provided by the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) Coronavirus Resource Center in the United States. JHU updates figures in real-time, collating data from world health organizations, state and national governments, and other public official sources, all of whom have their own systems for compiling information. 

Germany’s national statistics are compiled by its public health agency, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). These figures depend on data transmission from state and local levels and are updated around once a day, which can lead to deviation from JHU. 

am, mvb/sri (AP, dpa, AFP, Reuters)

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