China puts half a million people in lockdown as Beijing fights new cluster

  BEIJING, China (AFP) — China imposed a strict lockdown on nearly half a million people in a province surrounding the capital to contain a fresh coronavirus cluster on Sunday, as authorities warned the outbreak was still “severe and complicated.” After China largely brought the virus under control, hundreds have been infected in Beijing and cases have emerged in neighbouring Hebei province in recent weeks. Health officials said Sunday that Anxin county — about 150 […]

Total COVID-19 worldwide surpass 10 million as global virus deaths top 500,000

  (Eagle News) – The total number of COVID-19 cases worldwide has surpassed 10 million while deaths were now more than half a million as virus cases continued to increase in almost all countries affected by the pandemic. Based on the data of the Johns Hopkins University as of Monday, June 29, 7:33 a.m., (Philippine time) global COVID-19 cases reached 10,104,045 while COVID deaths reached 500,882. The United States still leads countries with the most […]

PHL condemns latest missile, drone strikes vs Saudi Arabia

(Eagle News) — The Philippines on Friday, June 26, condemned the latest drone and missile strikes against Saudi Arabia. In a brief statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs said the Philippines “places utmost importance on the stability and security of the Gulf…” It also urged “a halt to the repeated attacks and provocations” on Tuesday, June 23. The attacks have been claimed by the Houthis, who gained a stronghold in Yemen’s capital Sanaa in late […]

US Senate approves sanctions bill over Hong Kong

  WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — The US Senate on Thursday unanimously approved a bill that would lay out sanctions on Chinese officials who undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy as Beijing pushes forward with a controversial security law. The House of Representatives still needs to pass the bill, which would allow sanctions in the United States against Chinese officials and the Hong Kong police as well as banks that conduct “significant transactions” with them. The vote […]

Lightning kills at least 107 in India monsoon

PATNA, India (AFP) — At least 107 people died from lightning strikes in northern and eastern India Thursday, officials said, during the early stages of the annual monsoon season. Some 83 people were killed in the impoverished eastern state of Bihar after being struck by lightning, and another 24 died in northern Uttar Pradesh state. Dozens more were injured, officials said. Lightning strikes during the June-September annual monsoon are fairly common in India. But Bihar’s […]

Flash flooding kills three in Ivory Coast

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast (AFP) — Torrential rains turned the streets of Ivory Coast’s main city Abidjan into rivers on Thursday, flooding homes, flipping cars, and killing three people. The city’s firefighters said that two people died in the devastation, but a journalist said he saw the body of a third victim. “In half an hour, the water rose a meter and a half (five feet). We had to take refuge on the roof of our […]

US jobless claims top 47.2 million with 1.48 million new filings

WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — Another 1.48 million Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week, the Labor Department said Thursday, a worse-than-expected figure that showed the continuing potency of the coronavirus pandemic. The new claims were a decrease of only 60,000 from the week prior and brought the total since the business shutdowns began in mid-March to more than 47.2 million. Adding to the toll was the 728,120 people applying for benefits last […]

Iran coronavirus deaths top 10,000

TEHRAN, Iran (AFP) — Iran on Thursday announced 134 new deaths from the novel coronavirus took the overall toll in the Middle East’s deadliest outbreak past 10,000. The Islamic republic has struggled to contain the spread of the virus since it reported its first cases in the Shiite holy city of Qom in late February. Official figures have shown a rising trajectory in new confirmed cases since early May, when Iran hit a near two-month […]

Miner becomes millionaire after finding biggest tanzanite stones

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (AFP) — A Tanzanian small-scale miner has become a multi-millionaire after uncovering two of the biggest of the country’s precious tanzanite stones ever found and selling them to the government. Saniniu Kuryan Laizer, 52, found the stones weighing 9.27 and 5.1 kilograms (20.4 and 11.2 pounds) respectively in the northern Mirerani hills, an area which President John Magufuli had fenced off in 2018 to stop smuggling of the gem. He sold […]

New coronavirus cluster at Italy courier warehouse: report

ROME, Italy (AFP) — A cluster of new coronavirus cases has emerged at a warehouse in the Italian city of Bologna used by express courier Bartolini, a local newspaper reported Thursday. The company uncovered 44 asymptomatic cases — including two drivers — after testing all workers at the warehouse in central-northern Italy following the discovery of two members of staff with the virus, the Resto del Carlino daily said. Bartolini (BRT) has closed the warehouse […]

Pakistan airline grounds about 150 pilots in license probe: official

ISALAMABAD, Pakistan (AFP) — Pakistan International Airlines said Thursday it had grounded almost a third of its pilots for holding fake or dubious licences, a month after one of its planes crashed into houses killing 98 people. The move comes after the government released a preliminary report into the May 22 crash in Karachi. Investigators largely blamed the two pilots, who ignored flight protocols and had been discussing the coronavirus outbreak when they first attempted […]

DR Congo declares end to Ebola epidemic in east

KINSHASA, DR Congo (AFP) — DR Congo’s government on Thursday officially declared an end to an Ebola epidemic that broke out in the east of the troubled country in August 2018 and went on to claim 2,277 lives. The outbreak was “the longest, most complex and deadliest” in the 60-year history of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Health Minister Eteni Longondo said. It has only been surpassed by the 2013-16 Ebola epidemic in West Africa […]