The advisory list now includes ten more countries: Canada, Japan, Australia, Rwanda, Uruguay, Georgia, New Zealand, Thailand, Tunisia and South Korea. Chinese are only allowed to enter Europe if it also allows EU citizens. The entry ban will remain in effect for Americans, Russians, Indians, Brazilians and Turks, at least until they have more or less control of the corona virus for at least two weeks.
The EU list is a recommendation. Some Member States have stricter or looser policies. An exception applies to EU citizens and diplomats, among others.
The EU countries except Ireland and the Schengen countries Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein closed their borders in mid-March for unnecessary trips by travelers from outside the EU. Residents of a limited number of countries are welcome again since 1 July.
Every day during lunch an update of the most important news.
Law enforcement agencies, as well as servicemen, are detaining cyclists in Minsk who are participating in rallies of solidarity with convicted supporters of President Alexander Lukashenko’s rivals, local human rights activists said.
The human rights center “Viasna” reported that in Minsk “participants and participants in traditional bicycle actions of solidarity are being detained.” According to them, “not only police officers, but also military personnel are involved in the detention,” reports TASS.
The mass arrests began on Friday. It is noted that “cyclists are detained along with bicycles.”
The press secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Belarus Olga Chemodanova did not comment on this information, however, she denied the message of a number of Telegram channels about a cyclist allegedly hit by a car of security officials: “This is a fake. It is previously known that a person has an epileptic seizure. The staff called an ambulance. He is now hospitalized. ”
At the same time, videos of eyewitnesses began to appear on social networks, which, in particular, captured how riot police officers detained several cyclists on the move.
Calls to hold protests in Minsk appeared on social networks on Friday. Motorists were asked to go to the central streets of the cities at 19.00 (coinciding with Moscow time), honk and turn on Viktor Tsoi’s song “Change”. The epicenter of the protest was Independence Avenue, the traffic police even had to restrict traffic on it, reports RIA Novosti.
The second flash mob involved the departure of groups of cyclists from different points of Minsk at about the same time, which ply the city.
Recall that the main voting day in Belarus is August 9, five people are registered as candidates. Alexander Lukashenko is running for a sixth term.
On August 7, during the observation of early voting at one of the polling stations was detained Nikolai Lysenkov, head of staff of the presidential candidate of Belarus Sergei Cherechnya.
On August 6, the press secretary of the politician Anna Krasulina said that the head of the election headquarters of the presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya is Maria Moroz detained In Minsk. Later her released.
VZGLYAD newspaper toldwhy does Lukashenka have a real reason to fear the outcome of the presidential elections in Belarus.
Over 19.6 million people worldwide have tested positive for the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University. Around 727 100 infected people have died and over 12 million have recovered.
The latest developments
More than five million people have been shown to have contracted the coronavirus in the United States. That came out on Sunday (August 9th) from data from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Recently, the number of new infections in the USA, especially in states in the south and west of the country, rose sharply again. The threshold of four million known infections had only been exceeded two and a half weeks ago. So far, more than 162,000 people in the United States have died after contracting the coronavirus, according to data from Johns Hopkins. The authorities recently reported an average of 1,000 deaths and around 60,000 new infections per day. In no country in the world are there as many known infections and deaths in absolute terms as in the USA, a country with 330 million inhabitants.
In India, a hotel burned that was converted to treat Covid-19 patients. Ten people were killed on Sunday (August 9th). 20 people were saved, Police Inspector MVS Nagaraju said. The likely cause of the fire is a short circuit. A private hospital had rented the hotel to treat patients with mild symptoms. The management of the center is now being investigated on suspicion of negligent homicide. India is suffering severely from the corona pandemic. With a good 2.15 million infected people, the country ranks third in the world behind the USA and Brazil.
The death toll from the coronavirus in Brazil rose to more than 100,000 on Saturday (8th August), 905 more than the previous day. Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro has long been criticized for his lax handling of the pandemic. There have been repeated demonstrations and protests against the way the government of the right-wing populist head of state has dealt with the crisis. On Saturday, symbolic red balloons were raised for the corona victims on Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro.
France’s capital, Paris, is introducing mandatory outdoor masks. Particularly heavily frequented areas such as the banks of the Seine or shopping streets in several city districts are affected, the police headquarters announced on Saturday evening (August 8th). The regulation applies from Monday.
The British medical device regulator has initiated the recall of hundreds of thousands of coronavirus test kits. As the government in London confirmed on Saturday (August 8th), there are up to 741,000 tests by Randox. These may not be safe for use, it said to justify. Randox had won a £ 133 million contract from the UK government in March, including the provision of coronavirus tests. According to the Guardian, the award was made without a tender.
An increase in cases of Covid-19 infection is forcing the Executive to take even more restrictive measures in Preston, north-west England.
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Containment will be tightened for residents of the town of Preston, located in Lancashire (north-west of England), due to an increase in cases of the new coronavirus, the British government announced on Friday.
From midnight, the approximately 141,000 inhabitants of this city will no longer be able to receive visitors at home, including in their gardens. They can meet other people outside, and form a group of up to six people, or two households.
After reviewing the situation, authorities decided to extend similar bans taken in parts of the North West, West Yorkshire and Leicester.
“The past week has been difficult for many people in Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire and East Lancashire, and I thank all the people in these areas for their patience and respect for the rules,” said Health Minister Matt Hancock in a statement.
“Unfortunately, the data does not yet show a decrease in the transmission of this terrible virus. This means that we have to keep the current restrictions in place (…) At the request of the region, we are also extending these restrictions to Preston, ”he added.
The continuation of these measures will be examined next week. These restrictions are in addition to other measures taken in England such as the obligation to wear a mask which will be extended from Saturday to museums, cinemas and places of worship.
The United Kingdom has recorded 46,511 deaths of people who have tested positive for Covid-19, making it the most bereaved country in Europe. The total number of people who tested positive reached 309’005 (+871).
Mohamed Badine El Yattioui, Doctor of Political Science from the University of Lyon (France). A specialist in global security and global governance issues, he teaches at the UDLAP (University of the Americas Puebla) in Mexico and Jean Moulin Lyon III University. He chairs the think-tank NejMaroc, Moroccan Center for Research on Globalization which publishes a biannual journal and organizes events in different countries and leads the Permanent Seminar on the Muslim World (Observatorio sobre el mundo Muslim) ILM.
A law now allows the private sector to invest in the military industry. Bill 10.20 relating to defense and security materials and equipment, arms and ammunition was passed in Parliament (unanimously). Private industrial units in this sector will therefore be set up. An implementing decree will announce the members of the national commission for defense and security materials and equipment, arms and ammunition, which will grant the authorizations.
Three categories now exist. The first includes equipment and weapons intended for military operations, computer systems and surveillance or communication tools. The second concerns products intended for the preservation of public order and safety. Finally, the third relates to weapons and ammunition used in hunting or sport shooting. In addition, the Parliament has passed another piece of legislation concerning the control of exports of dual-use goods, civil and military. It has a double utility. It brings Morocco into conformity with international conventions and partly protects the future armaments industry. Note that the legal arsenal surrounding weapons and ammunition dates from the 1930s.
Future companies will have to be owned by majority Moroccan capital. Morocco must create its military independence for geopolitical and financial reasons. The bill for the purchase of weapons and military equipment, between 2010 and 2018, was estimated at between 35 and 40 billion dirhams according to a report from the ministry responsible for the administration of national defense. It therefore seems urgent to reflect on a comprehensive and integrated policy in this area, involving the administration, research centers (public and private) and private Moroccan companies.
Finally, we can note that this makes people talk outside our borders. “If Morocco and Algeria are partner and friendly countries, we understand that it is imperative for Spain to maintain its military superiority in the western Mediterranean region”, defends the VOX party (nationalist right) in parliament Spanish, who takes a dim view of military cooperation between Morocco and the United States. In a bill, this party asks the government of Pedro Sanchez (left) to devote 2% of GDP to the military budget. In its report of April 27, 2020, out of the 40 countries with the highest military spending in 2019, the SPRI (Stockholm-based institute) ranks Spain 17th with $ 17.2 billion in annual spending (Morocco was not in the ranking). The Spanish government does not criticize Morocco because the latter has acquired a prominent place. It is its second trading partner outside the EU, it slows down migratory waves and it provides invaluable aid in the fight against terrorism. The converse is true because Spain is our first trading partner, and provides us with our second contingent of tourists. Things will calm down eventually as the two countries need a peaceful and stable relationship.
Finally, Morocco is within its rights with the establishment of this industry. National security issue.
Several regions are changing the conditions of access to their territory.
LBelgians and people who have stayed in Belgium during the last two weeks will no longer be admitted to Finnish territory from Monday 10 August, Foreign Affairs reminded this Friday. It should also be noted that traveling from Belgium to the United Kingdom implies, from Saturday, to respect a quarantine.
From Saturday, travelers from Belgium and going to England, Scotland or Northern Ireland will have to respect a quarantine. This rule applies as of this Friday for Wales. Those affected will have to self-isolate for a period of 14 days upon arrival. They also have the obligation to report to the authorities using a form.
In addition, travel to the Aberdeen area of Scotland is no longer permitted, as was the case for Leicester.
Finland does allow business travel and family visits, however, subject to a 14-day quarantine once in the country. Students and permanent residents in Finland are also allowed to go there under the same conditions.
In the direction of returns, the Belgian authorities no longer recommend quarantine and / or screening test for travelers returning from Wales. In the UK, only the regions of East Midlands, North and East Yorkshire and North West are affected by this measure.
A vaccine appears to be the only viable alternative to end the pandemic of coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 that has the world on edge. Appeal that humanity obtain collective immunity – that is, that a large part of the population is infected so that it acts as a barrier that prevents transmission -, taking into account the lethality of the COVID-19, it doesn’t seem like a viable option. On the other hand, although there are several projects that seek to find a favorable response against the disease in existing treatments, they are still far from obtaining effective results.
More than seven months after the first case was officially registered in Wuhan (China), the coronavirus has already left 706,342 dead and 18’742,917 infected on the five continents.
Therefore, there are currently more than 200 teams working on the development of a vaccine, and the World Health Organization (WHO) is tracking about 140 of them. Of this total, 25 are in human clinical trials. The international body seeks to coordinate global efforts with a view to dispose of 2 billion doses by the end of 2021.
Beyond knowing which vaccine will be the first to be successful, something most scientists around the world agree on is that the race to obtain it has marked a milestone in the history of medicine.
Normally, the development of a vaccine – and its subsequent availability on the market – is a process that takes years, sometimes more than 12, and sometimes never comes. For example, AIDS, a disease that is also caused by a virus (HIV), has been wreaking havoc on the population for decades; But despite efforts, a vaccine is not yet available.
In the case of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, in just a few months there are already at least four candidates that have been shown to have an antibody response in clinical trials with people. And everything indicates that they could be ready after the first half of 2021. How is it possible?
Vaccines go through a long process of clinical trials in which their safety is validated, first, and their efficacy second. Everything begins with a preclinical phase, in which tests are carried out on animals. Then the human safety tests begin, in phase 1. Initially, they are done in small groups of 20 to 100 volunteers. In phase 2 the most common short-term side effects and the response of the immune system are evaluated, in this stage it is tested with hundreds of people. Finally, in phase 3, the evolution of vaccinated and unvaccinated people is controlled in hundreds and thousands of volunteers, likewise, statistical data are collected to define if their inoculation is safe.
After this process, the regulatory agencies of each country carry out the pertinent analyzes for final approval, which can be a long process in itself, if one does not participate directly in a clinical trial previously.
However, in the current situation, laboratories and entities working on the development of a vaccine manage these phases simultaneously, which allows them to accelerate their development time.
But what are the candidates that are at a more advanced stage of development and are more likely to provide the desired immunity?
This is the vaccine designed by the University of Oxford and the AstraZeneca laboratory, which is already immersed in phase 3 studies, that is, it is being tested in thousands of participants. It is called ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 since it uses a recombinant chimpanzee adenovirus (ChAdOx1) without replication capacity. This adenovirus, harmless to humans, has been genetically modified to express the S protein (“Spike”) of SARS-CoV-2, which the pathogen uses to insert its genetic material into human cells. By recognizing this protein in the body, the person’s immune system responds.
The results of the phase 1 and 2 trials, which were carried out with 1,077 healthy adults, were found to be safe and showed both a cellular – with T cells – and humoral – through antibodies – immune responses in 90% of the participants. Immune responses were sustained until day 56 of the ongoing trial and side effects were minor, such as fatigue and headache. The researchers do not rule out that these responses are even greater after a second dose, as suggested by a subset of 10 individuals who received it in the study.
In phase 3 the trial will have more than 10,000 volunteers in the UK, 30,000 in the US, 2,000 in South Africa and 5,000 in Brazil. Oxford and AstraZeneca plan to produce 1 billion doses of vaccine that they agreed to sell at cost.
The vaccine prepared by the Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech is based on inactive particles of the new coronavirus. While inactivated pathogens can no longer cause disease, they can still elicit an immune response, as with the annual flu vaccine.
This type of vaccine uses the killed version of the germ that causes the disease, although it does not usually provide as strong an immunity as live vaccines; conversely, several booster doses may be needed for continued immunity against the disease.
At the beginning of the tests, in June, the company announced that phase 1 and 2 with 743 volunteers showed no adverse effects, and that the vaccine had elicited an immune response.
On July 3, Brazil became the first country to begin phase 3 testing of the Chinese vaccine, called Coronavac, against the coronavirus. Nine thousand volunteer doctors and paramedics will receive the vaccine in the next three months as part of the agreement between Sinovac and the Brazilian research institute Butantan to carry out the tests in the last phase before its homologation. Trial participants will receive two doses 14 days apart.
The Moderna biotech company works hand in hand with the US National Institutes of Health (CDC) to develop its own vaccine. The first results of phase 1, published in mid-July, showed that this candidate – called mRNA-1273 – is not only well tolerated, but also causes neutralizing antibody activity in healthy adults.
The vaccine is based on injecting fragments of genetic material from a virus, in this case mRNA, into human cells. They create viral proteins that mimic the coronavirus, training the immune system to recognize its presence. This technology has never been licensed for any disease. If successful, it would be the first RNA vaccine approved for human use.
Phase 2 of the trial is under development; in fact, it began in May, while the previous stage was being carried out, as work is being accelerated due to the first phase of the pandemic. Moderna announced on July 27 that it had begun phase 3 of its clinical trials, even as it continues to monitor the results of phase 2. In this phase, the vaccine will be tested in 30,000 US participants.
The company says it is on track to deliver at least 500 million doses per year starting in 2021, thanks in part to the agreement it has reached with Swiss manufacturer Lonza that will allow it to make up to 1 billion doses.
On July 23, the Chinese company said that its experimental coronavirus vaccine developed by China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm) could be ready for public use later this year. Previously, the company anticipated that the vaccine would be available in 2021.
Sinopharm is also using an inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine. The potential vaccine has entered phase 3 of a trial with about 15,000 participants carried out in the United Arab Emirates.
Developed at the Gamaleya Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology and financed by the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), the vaccine that the Russian authorities consider the most promising has concluded phase two. The Kremlin announced that it would start a mass vaccination project against the coronavirus in October. However, the effectiveness of this vaccine has been questioned by international experts.
The WHO asked Russia to follow international vaccine production standards, but so far the country has not published any studies or scientific data on the tests it carried out and no details are known about the phases of the process that it generally must comply with before approve and launch a vaccine.
Date and cost
Most experts believe that we can probably have a vaccine available to the vast majority by mid-2021.
The University of Oxford announced that the vaccine that they have developed in partnership with AstraZeneca, will go through a phase 3 trial, so that its commercialization would begin in the last month of the year.
“Our hope is to have results in the fall (spring in the southern hemisphere) therefore we think that we will be able to supply the vaccine by the end of the year at the latest”Pascal Soriot, CEO of AstraZeneca told RTL.
As for cost, Soriot said that, contrary to what was stated by the Pfizer, Merck and Moderna laboratories, the objective of his company is to supply the vaccine that it develops in collaboration with the University of Oxford at “cost price”, that is, without making a profit.
“We have an objective that is also to do it without benefit, that is, we will deliver the vaccine at cost prices worldwide”, he assured. He also added that the value of it “It will be about 2.50 euros per unit”.
In other words, the promising vaccine against COVID-19, which has been shown to produce immunity against the disease but requires more testing, would cost USD 2.90 at the current exchange rate.
The statement is related to the “Controversial and Unusual” contracting by “Direct Award”, of the contract for “Supply and Operation of the Offshore Drilling Unit”, where the company “PetroSaudi Oil Services (Venezuela) LTD, even showing clearly inflated prices and non-competitive, it was unusually favored, not once, but twice according to official documents. Despite the fact that the records have mostly disappeared from the networks and that the trace of its passage through PetroSaudi does not appear [https://www.linkedin.com/in/richard-aymard-66331b23] in his resume presented in “linkedin”, the president of said company in Venezuela at that time “points” to the ex-PDVSA geologist Richard Aymard, who according to some resides in Spain, although according to others, in France.
Curious fact: Richard Aymard preceded Eulogio del Pino in the position of Deltana platform manager after the oil sabotage.
The NAF in PDVSA is called (or called) the approval or financial authority level. This presupposes a maximum limit of the approval level in the amount of the contract. In the case of the sunken barge Aban Pearl, the signed lease exceeded $ 1,315,800,000, an amount that exceeded the NAF range of those members of the board. Said contract entailed a markup of 49.7%, which exceeded $ 662,470,000.
The sinking of the Aban Pearl resulted in another dark negotiation that in theory aimed to remedy what happened; the rental of a “new” drilling rig; the Songa Saturn known as the “Ghost Ship”, with the same company PetroSaudi Oil Services Venezuela and with the same vulgar surcharge.
This time, the amount of the negotiation was over $ 1,302,645,000 for 7 years, according to a communication [https://diario16.com/expediente-completo-las-irregularidades-y-delitos-desde-el-aban-pearl-al-barco-fantasma-de-pdvsa/] referred to Eulogio Del Pino, confidentially by Ricardo Coronado, director of PDVSA Servicios, with a copy to Rafael Ramírez, Asdrúbal Chávez, Hercilio Rivas, Eudomario Carruyo, Luis Pulido, Carlos Vallejo, Fadi Kabboul, Iván Orellana, Aref Richani and José L . Stop. None of these directors, including the current president of PDVSA Asdrúbal Chávez, raised the alarm about the embezzlement that was taking place against PDVSA and Venezuela at that time. The Prosecutor’s Office has so far only charged 6 former second-line employees.
When in the oil industry the resource of Direct Assignment is appealed, the established practice is by way of an emergency declaration, either due to the need for an unusual event that merits immediate action and response, or because technology or knowledge in question is a captive of a particular company. When, in the absence of any of these elements, direct adjudication is used, it is simply because you want to favor a particular company without going through the due process of qualification and decision. Such seems to have been the case with the offshore hiring.
What could have influenced and what could have been the need for a direct award, when since the presidential address of September 2008, where Hugo Chávez himself gave the green light to the Gran Mariscal offshore project [https://twitter.com/einsteinmillan/status/1289882655274614786?s=21]Up to the date the contract was awarded, exactly 2 long years had elapsed, which was enough time to set up any type of process through regular channels, since the emergency factor was not involved at that time.
Although the alleged motivation of the process obeyed according to the directive, the fact of not having found another drilling equipment with a competitive rate such as that granted by PetroSaudi Oil Services Venezuela, the reality is that options with much more competitive prices abounded, since By then, between 2008-2011, in the world the level of use of offshore platforms was in a sharp decline towards less than 72%, as well as the contracting Premium [https://www.offshore-mag.com/drilling-completion/article/16755218/reviewing-the-world-offshore-rig-market]. That is, time was plentiful, options plentiful, and opportunities plentiful. Even so, they appealed to Direct Assignment with the same company; not once but twice and to end up paying excessive amounts compared to the real market rate. For example, for the Aban Pearl the agreed daily rate was $ 730,000. They paid a 49.6% surcharge for a deteriorated equipment and already in its last years, when the real market price for then in platforms of the same type, although in really optimal conditions, hovered around $ 350,000 in the Gulf of Mexico, while in Brazil a “high-end-specification-floater” was around $ 180,000 @ $ 340,000 per day.
The hiring of both the Aban Pearl and the “Songa Saturn Ghost Ship” was an irregular event that points to a colossal crime against the nation. Crime like many others that have occurred and that continue to occur within PDVSA and that have led to the appearance of opulent castes of the nouveau riche scattered throughout the world.
This 1MdB company was precisely where the funds that financially leveraged in principle came from, the briefcase company PetroSaudi in the negotiation with PDVSA.
As the Sarawak report points out, during 2007 a billion-dollar framework service contract was created [contrato No. NMD DISC DRL 151.0035] between PDVSA and Neptune Marine & Drilling, with the purpose of leasing the offshore drilling unit “Discover”. In the negotiation of this contract, the group of Luis Vierma, then vice president of EyP and the same one involved in the case, appears signing the surcharge of over 600% of the Chinese drills [https://www.planv.com.ec/investigacion/investigacion/petroleo-mafias-crimenes-y-nuevos-ricos-revolucionarios], according to the current candidate Leocenis García.
With the contract close to expiring, it was renewed and transferred to PetroSaudi in January 2010, maintaining an agreement between PDVSA, PetroSaudi and Neptune, while in parallel a new contract was signed between PDVSA and PetroSaudi [contrato No. 4600036377] in September’2010, to add additional “junk” equipment; Saturn, which joined the other scrap team Aban Pearl and for which, with the approval of E. Del Pino and the Board of Directors, including the current president of PDVSA, rates with a surcharge of close to 50% were approved in both cases , by equipment discarded in other parts of the world including Malasya. These teams, according to internal technical reports of the same offshore division, did not meet the integrity and characteristics necessary to guarantee the required operations.
All these aggravating factors point not only towards a vulgar embezzlement and a large patrimonial damage to the nation, but also towards putting at risk the lives of workers, ongoing operations and assets of the republic. A nefarious crime carried out with cruelty and without regard against PDVSA and against Venezuela.
In late June, Beijing introduced laws in Hong Kong that even provided for life sentences for crimes that Chinese authorities deem to be subversive, separatist, terrorist activities or collusion with foreign forces. The new law also allows suspects to be tried in mainland China.
Chinese authorities say the new law is designed to combat separatist, subversive and terrorist activities as well as collusion with foreign forces. Critics say it will put an end to the freedoms and broad civil liberties that are considered key to Hong Kong’s position as an international financial center.
The ministry pointed to a higher risk of coronavirus infection in some regions, including Catalonia and Dalmatia. However, unlike Romania, it will not be necessary to submit a negative test for covid-19 when returning from these areas.
People traveling from Romania must continue to submit the test or enter a two-week quarantine. It also remains the case that employers must require a test from workers from Bulgaria, Portugal, Luxembourg, Sweden, Romania and Spain. The test result must be from the territory of the Czech Republic and must not be older than four days.
The Ministry of Health also pointed out that Spain, Sweden, Bulgaria, Belgium and Portugal could be removed from the list of safe countries “in the short term” if the epidemiological situation there worsened. The same warning for these countries was issued by the ministry last week, when Belgium was missing, where the number of new coronavirus infections has increased in recent days.
The ministry also warns against higher levels of risk in some European countries, which as a whole are rated as safe. These are, for example, Spanish Catalonia, the Split-Dalmatia County in Croatia, Lisbon, Varna, Geneva, Vienna and Upper Austria, which border the South Bohemian Region.