Mexico’s health ministry reported 3,837 new cases of coronavirus and 216 additional fatalities on Friday.
It brings the total number of confirmed cases to 3,858,831 and the death toll from the pandemic to 292,145, Reuters reports. Officials have said the ministry’s figures likely represent a significant undercount of both Covid cases and deaths.
Brazil registered 13,355 new coronavirus cases and 226 additional deaths in the last 24 hours, the country’s health ministry said on Friday.
Two people injured after Covid protest turns violent in the Netherlands
Crowds of rioters torched cars and threw rocks at police who responded with warning shots and a water cannon as protests against Covid-19 measures turned violent in Rotterdam in the Netherlands.
“We fired warning shots and there were also direct shots fired because the situation was life-threatening,” police spokesperson Patricia Wessels told Reuters.
“We know that at least two people were wounded, probably as a result of the warning shots, but we need to investigate the exact causes further.”
Several hundred people had gathered on Friday to voice opposition to government plans to restrict access to indoor venues to people who have a “corona pass”, showing they have been vaccinated or already recovered from an infection.
Authorities imposed a curfew on the French overseas territory of Guadeloupe following five days of civil unrest over Covid-19 protocols in which barricades have been burned in the streets and firefighters and doctors walked out on strike.
Guadeloupe’s prefect, Alexandre Rochatte, who represents the government on the Caribbean archipelago, said the nightly curfew would run from 6pm to 5am, Reuters reports. The sale of petrol in jerry cans would also be forbidden, he added.
“In light of the social unrest and acts of vandalism, the prefect of Guadeloupe has decided to impose a curfew,” Rochatte’s office said on Twitter.
Trade unions launched an indefinite strike on Monday to protest against the compulsory vaccination of health workers against Covid-19 and health pass requirements.
More than 14 million people in the UK have now received their Covid booster jab, government figures show.
A total of 387,057 boosters and third doses were recorded on Friday, bringing the total to 14,266,368, with more than one million top-up jabs recorded since Tuesday.
The south-east, north-east and Yorkshire have now recorded more than 1.9 million top-up jabs, meaning they will soon join the Midlands, which this week reached the milestone of two million jabs delivered.
Newcastle United’s new head coach, Eddie Howe, will be absent from his first game in charge in the Premier League against Brentford on Saturday after testing positive for Covid-19 during a routine test on Friday, the club said.
Advisers to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have voted to recommend expanding eligibility of booster doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna Covid-19 vaccines to all adults, Reuters reports.
The panel also voted to recommend that all people aged 50 years and over should get a booster dose.
Stellantis NV will require all US salaried non-represented employees to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 by 5 January, the automaker said, as it prepares for a phased reopening of its US offices next year.
Nearly 80% of its salaried US workforce self-reported that they are fully vaccinated, the company said. The Chrysler parent said all workers would need to submit proof of their vaccination status by 4 December and receive their final dose by 5 January, Reuters reports.
People in Victoria, Australia, who test positive to Covid-19 will be responsible for notifying close contacts themselves, in a measure that some epidemiologists say could help increase testing rates.
Under the new rules, announced by premier Daniel Andrews this week, people who test positive to Covid-19 will be required to notify their workplace, school, or childcare, which will in turn be required to notify employees or anyone who spent time in the workplace during the at risk period.
People who test positive will also be “strongly recommended” to tell their social contacts and encourage them to get tested, the Andrews government said in a statement on Thursday. But, except in circumstances of an emerging outbreak, the Victorian health department “will not trace or manage these contacts”.
Following the announcement that Austria is going into a national lockdown to contain a fourth wave of coronavirus cases on Monday, here is some reaction from locals.
“I was hoping that there wouldn’t be a general lockdown,” Markus Horvath told AFP as he prepared to shut his stall selling wooden jewellery at a Christmas market in Vienna.
Christian Edlmayr, selling glass ornaments at another Vienna Christmas market, said he would lose half his yearly revenue.
“This will be very, very bad for me,” he said.
Under the partial lockdown, only outlets deemed essential will remain open such as supermarkets, banks, pharmacies and post offices.
Andreas Schneider, a 31-year-old from Belgium who works as an economist in the Austrian capital, also described the lockdown as a “tragedy”, saying confining just the unvaccinated had been “reasonable” since they had a choice.
Covid infections have fallen across much of the UK, according to official figures, but remain high enough to put the health service under “significant strain” in the months ahead, scientists warn.
The Office for National Statistics estimates one in 65 people in England had Covid in the week ending 13 November, down marginally from one in 60 the week before. A small decline was also seen in Wales, with rates in Scotland and Northern Ireland broadly level.
The new figures, which are for community infections and exclude people in hospitals, care homes and other settings, come as a surge in cases on the continent sent Austria back into lockdown and led Germany’s health minister to warn that a further lockdown there could not be ruled out.
British pop singer Faye Tozer has tested positive for Covid-19 and will miss Steps’ arena tour in order to self-isolate.
Writing on Twitter, the singer-songwriter said: “I am baffled and gutted after being so tight on our preventative measures.
“Thankful for our daily testing to have been able to recognise it and so the show can still go on.
“Please give the guys the biggest love as they continue to smash the shows and I hope to be back soon.”
And here is my colleague Kate Connolly’s story on the sweeping new measures being brought in to stem the spread of coronavirus in Bavaria, Germany.
As we reported earlier, Covid infections have fallen across much of the UK, according to official figures. But, scientists are warning that levels remain high enough to put the health service under “significant strain” in the months ahead, Ian Sample and Heather Stewart report.
Cases have risen sharply since the summer in many European countries in a wave of infections that began in eastern nations and moved steadily west. But while the worst affected countries are bringing in major restrictions to contain the surge, UK ministers are holding off with plan B measures that would bring in vaccine passports, expand mask wearing and encourage more people to work from home.
Ministers hope immunity is higher in England than in some other countries because of the decision to open up earlier. “Covid has had more time to wash around in the UK,” said a government source.
It is understood Downing Street has been advised of two potential scenarios. Either the colder weather could bring a sharp increase in cases and hospital admissions, as on the continent – and “we have suddenly got a big problem” as a government source put it – or higher immunity levels could let Covid continue to circulate among unvaccinated populations including children, but without leading to a surge in hospital admissions and deaths. It will not be clear for some weeks which trajectory the UK is on.
Read the full story here: