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The shiny new robots gently check the pulses of highly infectious patients on life support in the Italian epicentre of COVID-19.The doctors and nurses love them because they also help save their own lives.

Taliban and Afghan government reportedly agree on prisoner swap

After weeks of disagreement as to how the Afghan government would swap prisoners with the Taliban reports are now suggesting that there will be a first release of 100 Taliiban prisoners along with 20 pro-government troops.

Four acquitted in Daniel Pearl murder rearrested pending appeal

Four men acquitted in the kidnapping and killing of American journalist Daniel Pearl in Pakistan have been rearrested and will stay in jail while prosecutors appeal the ruling, officials said.

South Africa rolls out mobile testing in virus lockdown

South African public healthcare workers dispersed into the buzzing streets of Johannesburg's Yeoville neighbourhood on Friday as Africa's worst virus-hit country rolled out mass door-to-door testing for COVID-19.

China mourns virus dead as Americans told to wear masks

China paid homage Saturday to victims of the coronavirus in the place where the global pandemic began, as Americans were warned to wear masks amid fears the disease can be spread by breathing.

China pauses in memory of virus victims and 'martyrs'

China came to a standstill on Saturday to mourn patients and medical staff killed by the coronavirus, as the world's most populous country observed a nationwide three-minute silence.

Keir Starmer elected new UK Labour leader: party

Britain's main opposition Labour party on Saturday announced that Keir Starmer had been elected as its new leader, replacing Jeremy Corbyn who resigned after its crushing December election defeat.

Op-Ed: US said to be planning attacks on Iranian-supported Iraq militias

The United States and Iran both badly hit by the coronavirus appear to be on the verge of military action against each other. After earlier engagements this year both sides seem to be preparing for a new imminent conflict.

Loyal US carrier sailors cheer captain relieved of command

US Navy Captain Brett Crozier was cheered by hundreds of sailors as he left the USS Roosevelt docked in Guam after his controversial firing by the Pentagon, videos showed Friday.

UN predicts 'deep recession' in LatAm due to virus

Latin America is heading into "a deep recession" in 2020, with an expected drop in the region's GDP of 1.8 to 4.0 percent due to the coronavirus pandemic, the UN economic commission for the region said Friday.

EU backs US plan for Venezuela transitional government

The European Union on Friday welcomed a US plan for a transitional government in Venezuela and subsequent lifting of economic sanctions.

3M balks at Trump order to stop exporting N95 masks to Canada

Manufacturing giant 3M pushed backed against President Trump in a statement on Friday that suggested it would not comply with a White House order to stop exporting N95 facemasks to Canada and Latin America.

Bolsonaro's disapproval rating rises amid virus havoc

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro's disapproval rating has surged as the far-right leader has taken a vocal stance against coronavirus containment measures, two polls out Friday found.

Putin says Russia ready to cooperate on cutting oil production

Russia is ready to cooperate with Saudi Arabia and the United States to cut oil production, President Vladimir Putin said Friday.

Panama transgender community worried over virus gender rules

Panama has implemented gender-based social distancing regulations to help tackle the coronavirus crisis, but the move has raised "dread" among members of the transgender community.

Orthodox motorcade in Moscow wards off virus with holy icon and prayers

The head of the Russian Orthodox Church blessed Moscow on Friday to ward off the coronavirus, circling the city in a motorcade with a holy icon and reciting prayers.

Star footballer joins row after French scientists suggest testing virus vaccine in Africa

Two leading French doctors on Friday insisted they had been misunderstood after sparking a storm of criticism by discussing the idea of testing a vaccine for coronavirus in Africa on television.

EU inches towards economic virus plan after infighting

While the United States, China and other world powers have unleashed tremendous fiscal firepower to fight the economic chaos caused by coronavirus, Europe has not joined battle, riven by infighting.

UN predicts 'deep recession' in LatAm due to virus

Latin America is heading into "a deep recession" in 2020, with an expected drop in the region's GDP of 1.8 to 4.0 percent due to the coronavirus pandemic, the UN economic commission for the region said Friday.

Italy sees signs of hope despite 766 new virus deaths

Italy saw more evidence Friday that it might have made it through the worst of the coronavirus pandemic despite the world-leading death toll growing by 766 to 14,681.

Facing Trump's wrath, 3M vows boosted mask production for US

3M on Friday defended its handling of production and distribution of desperately needed masks to combat the coronavirus pandemic after President Donald Trump threatened to punish the US manufacturing giant for not shifting all distribution back home.

Italy and Russia spar over alleged coronavirus spies

Italy was engaged in a war of words with Russia on Friday over allegations Moscow hid spies among doctors it had sent to the country's coronavirus epicentre near Milan.

Brazil health minister has big job, difficult boss

As if leading his country's fight against coronavirus wasn't hard enough, Brazil's health minister has to deal with a boss, President Jair Bolsonaro, who criticizes, undermines and ignores him.

Coronavirus: 'Worst yet to come' for countries in conflict, says UN chief

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres Friday renewed his call for a global ceasefire, urging all parties to conflict to lay down arms and allow war-torn nations to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Solidarity? When it comes to masks, it's every nation for itself

From government stock seizures to sales to the highest bidder on airport tarmacs, the hunt for face masks amid the coronavirus outbreak has become a global free-for-all where the rules of fair play no longer apply.

New 4,000-bed coronavirus field hospital opens in London

Britain on Friday opened a new 4,000-bed temporary hospital to treat the most seriously ill coronavirus patients, as day-on-day deaths surged to a new record and royal officials said Queen Elizabeth II would make a rare crisis address to the nation.

Migrants under pressure as isolation threatens Lesbos camp

Social distancing is an alien concept in the Moria camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, as thousands of refugees jostle in the queues for toilets and showers.

Americans urged to wear masks as virus toll mounts around world

The United States on Friday advised all Americans to wear masks in public to protect against the new coronavirus, fearing the illness that has infected more than one million people worldwide may be spreading by normal breathing.

Controversial Soviet-era statue removed in Prague

Prague authorities on Friday said they had removed a controversial Soviet-era statue, despite protests from Moscow, to make way for a World War II memorial.

Light at tunnel's end: Wuhan's cautious reawakening

Cars are back on city streets and shoppers are strolling in malls again as life slowly returns to Wuhan. But the cradle of the global coronavirus pandemic remains under the shadow of the contagion.

Italy's Conte demands more 'courage' from EU to fight virus

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Friday extended his feud about coronavirus money with EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen in the pages of a newspaper.

Customers desert South Korea's animal cafes over virus fears

A beige feline paces between two Gaudi-style columns at the empty 2 Cats cafe in Seoul, with upturned stools standing on the tables where humans sat to play with them in pre-virus days.

Easter Island inhabitants turn to tradition to tackle virus troubles

Inhabitants of Easter Island are leaning on a traditional form of ancestral discipline to overcome a coronavirus-imposed lockdown that threatens the Pacific island's vital tourism sector, and consequently their livelihoods.

South Korean ex-presidential candidate on virus frontline

When hospitals in the South Korean city of Daegu were overwhelmed by coronavirus patients, officials appealed for doctors to help, and among the volunteers was multi-millionaire and former presidential candidate Ahn Cheol-soo.

Virus fear stalks Nigeria displaced camps

Men and women cluster around plastic wash basins hastily set up outside one of northeast Nigeria's sprawling displaced persons’ camps, lathering their hands with soap under the gaze of security personnel.

UN adopts resolution calling for 'cooperation' on virus

The UN General Assembly on Thursday approved a resolution calling for "international cooperation" and "multilateralism" in the fight against COVID-19, in the first text to come out of the international body since the outbreak began.

Global virus cases top a million, deaths surpass 50,000

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases around the world has soared past one million and fatalities have topped 50,000 as the United States reported the highest daily death toll of any country so far.

Canada FM slams state-sponsored coronavirus disinformation

Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne after a NATO meeting on Thursday slammed coronavirus disinformation campaigns spread by state actors, of which Russia has been accused.

Peru to restrict movement by gender during virus quarantine

Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra announced on Thursday a new measure restricting public movement by gender, as the country tries to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.

Pentagon removes captain of virus-struck aircraft carrier

The Pentagon removed the captain of the coronavirus-stricken USS Theodore Roosevelt Thursday, saying he mishandled communications over how the outbreak was sweeping through the warship.

Biden says will talk soon with Trump on coronavirus response

Democratic White House hopeful Joe Biden said Thursday he was finalizing plans to speak by telephone with President Donald Trump about the coronavirus crisis and how to stem the deadly pandemic.
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