Covid-19 news: April 17

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Covid-19 news: April 17

Go back to 4/7 index

Current Status

Dashboards:New York Times,Johns Hopkins,Our World in Data.

4/6 Al Jazeera survey & map of international travel restrictions -Link

"Infected but feeling fine": the unwitting coronavirus spreaders -Link

4/1 Infographic on every vaccine in development so far -Link

Countries

Africa faces an existential threat from the virus -Link
Africa meets pandemic with violence, confusion -Link
... making it worse, in many instances ...

3/26 Africa is woefully ill-eqipped to cope with Covid-19 -Economist
... People cannot stay away from work if they have no money ...

3/22In Africa, social distancing is a privilege few can afford

3/17Africa braces for the coronavirus, slowly

3/15Cases spreading across Africa

3/14Africa vs coronavirus: a challenge for the continent

North Africa

4/17 Libya: “Which death is going to be worse?” -Link

... Coronavirus invades a conflict zone. Video.

4/17 Sudan bans all inter-city passenger travel to halt coronavirus -Link

... also, 12-hour curfew, schools shuttered, gatherings banned ...

3/26 Egypt forces journalist to leave after coronavirus story -Link
... work that ends up criticizing the government will likely land people in trouble ...

3/24 Egypt initiates nationwide virus curfew -Link

3/24Coronavirus reaches Sudan, "one of the countries least equipped to handle it" -Link
... No hospital infrastructure to speak of. 200 critical care beds, 80 ventilators
... "Under al-Bashir, hospitals withered so cronies could make vast profits from private hospitals"

3/13Khartoum, Sudan has first coronavirus death- closes borders, stops international flights

Western Africa / Lake Chad / Nigeria

4/17 Coronavirus curfew causes water shortage for Burkina Faso’s poorest -Link

... “scolds her children when they wash with too much water”

4/17 Northern Nigerian economic hub of Kano imposes week-long lockdown over virus -Link

... lockdowns also in place on other cities ...

4/8 Nigerian megachurches adjust to being empty -Link

4/3 Lagos enters 2-week lockdown to fight coronavirus -Link

25 million under lockdown: “How will my children survive?” -Link
... “poor people in congested neighborhoods are worried about how they will cope”

3/23 Coronavirus cases rising rapidly -Link

3/18Nigeria bans 13 countries from entering

East Africa / Horn / Ethiopia / Somalia

3/29 Burundi may be stifling news, hiding cases of coronavirus -Link

3/23Kenya edging toward a lockdown- "sprawling informal settlements where people have no room to isolate, no running water"

3/20Millions of Ethiopians living in Oromiaunder a months-long government shutdown of the Internet and phone services cannot get news of Covid-19.

Southern / Middle Africa

4/17 Zimbabwe: Coronavirus will affect women and girls more than anyone -Link

... fears it will bring an end to WFP food deliveries ...

4/17 Congo was about to declare victory over the Ebola virus -Link

... then one more case popped up -Link

Coronavirus poses threat to battered health system in DR Congo -Link

3/26 A perfect Covid-19 storm closes in on South Africa -Link

West Asia / Gulf / Saudi / Turkey / Iran / Iraq (303m)

4/17 Coronavirus fears terrify, impoverish migrants in the Persian Gulf -Link

4/17 Gulf’s migrant workers left stranded & struggling by the virus -Link

3/26 Gaza, already under siege, imposes quarantine -Link

#Saudi

4/17 Saudi cases could reach 200,000 within weeks, says minister -Link

... Saudi Arabia extends virus curfew indefinitely -Link

Saudi Arabia imposes 24-hour curfew on Mecca, Medina -Link
... year-round umrah pilgrimage suspended, hajj may be postponed ...

3/23 Saudi initiates nationwide virus curfew -Link


3/14Saudi: bans all international flights
3/15closes malls, bans serving food in restaurants, cafes

3/25 Israel's synagogues close for the first time, due to virus -Link
... 3/25 Al-Aqsa mosque closed to Muslim worshippers - "bitter decision" -Link


3/09Israel: all international arrivals to be quarantined 14 days

3/13Kuwait urges Muslims to pray at home

3/13Oman: tourist visas suspended

UAE
4/17 UAE warns of action against countries that refuse to allow worker repatriation -Link

3/26UAE: 3-day closurefor massive nationwide disinfection campaign
3/24UAE: stop all international arrivals, ground all flights in or out of the country
3/17UAE suspends visas, restricts flights

Syria
3/17Syria: school, university closures- school, university closure; stores see panic buying
3/9Stopping the spread in Syrian refugee camps is ‘mission impossible'

Iran

4/17 Worst-case: 75% of Iranians may contract coronavirus -Link

... peak in Iran as far away as November, when a second wave may await ...

... Iran renews virus warning as “low-risk” activities restart -Link

In Iran, 17 regime figures have died -Link

3/23 Iran releases 1/3 of Christian prisoners due to virus concerns -Link
... will restrict travel to help fight coronavirus -Link

... banned all public gatherings, trying to avoid Iran's Qom super-spreader

Iran facing uncontrolled, uncontained pandemic, hard to know full impact
... 3/19 50 new cases per hour -Link
... 3/9top advisers, government officials, military personnel all infected
... 3/13Mass graves detectable via satellitenk
Virus “could kill millions”
out of hand ... no one believes the government's numbers
Iranians defy authorities in bid to access holy sites
current cases are 2x available beds

Iraq

4/17 Cloud of doubt surrounds coronavirus figures reported by Iraqi government -Link

... “The numbers... are not real numbers...”

... Baghdad, a city gone still -Link

3/29 Oil price crash, virus hits, commerce stops: Iraq is in trouble -NYT

3/13Iraq: border issues with Iraq over virus

Iraq: don't visit religious sites

#Turkey

Turkey/Syria: weaponizing water in global pandemic -Link
... Covid-19 protections require adequate supply of water ...

3/26 Turkey considers full lockdown -Link

Jordan
4/17 Jordan to ban mosque prayers during the month of Ramadan -Link

... “will not allow public worship” ...

3/25 Plan to feed Jordanians under curfew "sows chaos" -Link

3/20Jordan: nationwide state of emergency, lockdown

Central Asia / Caucasus

3/29 Majlis Podcast: the Coronavirus in Central Asia -RFE/RL

Azerbaijan
4/2 People need police permission to leave home, even to take out the trash -Link
3/19President suggests coronavirus may require a crackdown on opposition

... never let a disaster go unused

South Asia / Pakistan / India / Bangladesh

#Pakistan

4/17 “God is with us”: Muslims in Pakistan flout the coronavirus ban in mosques -Link

... “we wash our hands and face 5x a day when we say our prayers” ...

4/17 Pakistan struggles to fight Covid-19 -Link

... Doctors concerned about Pakistan’s health care capacity ...

4/4 Pakistan faced with dilemma of starvation and lockdown -Link

3/31 Pakistani clerics refuse to shut down mosques -Link

3/30 Reactions in Herat, Afghanistan to restrictions -Link

"As if Afghans didn't have enough trouble, now comes the pandemic" -Link

3/26 "God will protect us": coronavirus spreads through already struggling Pakistan -Link
... Many within clerical establishment refused to help... refused to limit mosque gatherings... brought together 150,000 clerics from around the world in a religious gathering that helped spread the virus ...

Pakistani doctors decry shortages as nation nears lockdown -Link

#Afghanistan

4/17 Afghanistan: Concerns about returning refugees spreading virus -Link

3/16Afghanistan: virus complicates war and peace
... tensions over the border with Iran, with 15,000/day coming in to Afgh .

#India

4/17 India extends world’s biggest lockdown as virus cases cross 10,000 -Link

... extended until May 3. some things have changed under the new rules -Link

India says it’s ready to tackle rising virus cases -Link

... “with over 100,000 beds in 600 hospitals” ...

As hunger grows, the fear of starvation is real -Link

... 100 million people are outside of the Public Distribution System ...

Migrants keep running away from quarantine centers -Link

... when they return home, supposed to be quarantined, but ...

Virus piles on the pain for India’s untouchables -Link

... caste made a crucial role in determining who received health care ...

Shutdown will hit India’s small businesses hard -Link

... 4 weeks = 19% of jobs lost, 8 weeks = 43% of jobs ...

Atlantic: “The callousness of India’s Covid-19 response” -Link

... world’s harshest lockdown: police brutality, lack of transparency, shortage of compassion ...

Unraveling urban India’s water challenges amid Covid-19 -Link

... urban poor lacked decent access to safe water before handwashing became life & death ...

The children struggling to survive India’s lockdown -Link

... worst affected are millions of child laborers and street children ...

The “shadow pandemic” of domestic violence in the midst of lockdown -Link

... tension, strain, + women isolated with violent partners ...

Coronavirus fans religious hatred -Link

4/7 Hints the virus lockdown in India could be extended -Link

Virus lockdown changes how Hindus celebrate holy period -Link

Returning migrant workers throw Bihar into social crisis -Link

“Some of us will die” -Link
... India’s homeless stranded by coronavirus lockdown ...

India’s pandemic lockdown turns into a human tragedy -Link

“Millions threatened with hardship” -Link

3/29 India's coronavirus lockdown leaves vast numbers stranded and hungry -NYT

3/29 PM "asks forgiveness" over lockdown -BBC
... "but it's the only way to fight the virus," he claims
... mentions a possible economic relief package

3/26 India and Pakistan try to keep a fifth of humanity at home -Economist
... but for many, the restrictions mean instant ruin

Announces 21-day lockdown for everyone: stay in your homes

India sources have sent me pics of people standing in line for vegetables, reports of police beating people out and about (along with video), people being quarantined, lots of politically-motivated activity in the local setting.

3/25 India's poorest fear "hunger may kill us before coronavirus" -Link

3/241.8m monitored due to symptoms, low testing, virus in all provinces
highest number of cases in Maharashtra and Kerala

3/24India's health system is not prepared- an analysis

3/24announces 21-day lockdown for everyone: stay in your homes

3/23World's "back office" rushes to stay online in the midst of India lockdown
... "the millions who staff the back offices of Wall Street banks"...
... "work outsourced by firms from airlines to insurers"...

#Bangladesh

Bangladesh extends lockdown by 11 days -Link

East Asia / China / Taiwan / Korea / Japan (1,677m)

#China

4/17 Birth of a pandemic: inside the first weeks of the virus outbreak in Wuhan -Link

... Reuters interactive graphic: how coronavirus hitched a ride through Asia -Link

How Wuhan’s ICU doctors survived -Link

... “I spent 7 weeks in a Wuhan ICU - here’s what I learned” -Link

China to step up virus testing for people leaving Wuhan -Link

On China’s “color codes” and life after Covid -Link

... countries have turned to new tech to track citizen’s movements.

... will they be able to give the surveillance up when Covid is over?

Early Covid-19 missteps have an all-too mundane explanation -Link

Number of people crossing China’s borders reduced 90% -Link

... in the medium term, it will be progressively harder to cross borders everywhere

As Covid-19 fades, xenophobia and nationalism flares -Link

China’s “Donation Diplomacy” raises tensions with the USA -Link

Observing Qingming during the coronavirus crisis -Link

... grave-cleaning ceremonies, and what churches are doing during this time

4/7 Wuhan comes out of lockdown.
Over 55,000 people are estimated to be leaving Wuhan -Link
... "anyone with a green health code, who passes temperature checks"...

4/7 China refusing to allow US companies with manufacturing plants in China to export their goods outside China -Link,Why

China’s travel restrictions: an explainer -Link
... good run-down in general as well as province-by-province table ...

Non-mask wearing and open sneezing soon to be officially frowned upon by law -Link
... expanding the “list of ‘uncivilized behaviors’”

Foreigners face suspicion in China as coronavirus worsens overseas -Link

US intelligence report allegedly says China hid extent of coronavirus outbreak -Link
... Lots of politicking, but it’s clear that in nearly any given country, ‘total cases’ is really just ‘total confirmed cases’ or ‘total known cases’ and various countries for various reasons either hide the number, don’t test, or don’t acknowledge.

3/29 UK government thinks China's total cases could be 40x what is reported -
... would be on the order of 3 million infections ...

3/26 Temporary ban on foreigners entering China, to prevent second wave -Link

3/24Hubei lifts restrictions

3/23Wuhan continues to find new asymptomatic cases dailydespite official figures

3/23Has China really beaten the coronavirus? Questions about the stats still abound.

3/20Covid-19 is a chance forthe church in the US to learn from the church in China.

3/12tightens borders to prevent re-importing infections- quarantine facilities for all international visitors

3/11China's new normal- life springing back after weeks of lockdown, still not normal

#Taiwan / Mongolia / Macau / Hong Kong

4/17 Hong Kong’s domestic workers: when ‘stay at home’ means ‘live at work’ -Link

Taiwan ‘rapidly produced, implemented 124 action items
... border control, case identification, quarantine, education ...

3/26 How Taiwan fended off the coronavirus -Link
... lots of data, quarantines, border controls, masks, etc.

Hong Kong bars non residentsand bans alcohol sales in restaurants, bars

3/10Mongolia closed down all international flights

#Japan

4/17 Japan extends state of emergency to all parts of the country -Link

4/7 Japan declares state of emergency as Covid-19 cases soar -Link

3/26 Japan's success has puzzled the world: is its luck running out? -Link
... cases spiked this week, leading to fears that limited testing means many cases are going undetected ...

3/24 To no one's surprise,Olympics postponed.

#Koreas

4/17 South Korea reports recovered patients testing positive again -Link

... it’s definitely happening, tho unclear why

North Korea claims no coronavirus infections - can it be trusted?Link
... obviously not. Other articles relate how they’ve secretly asked for help -Link

North Korea swallows its pride and asks for help -Link
... "secretly asked for international help as the pandemic threatens to cripple its fragile healthcare system..."

3/22 Incredible surveillance in S Korea against the virus -Link
Monitoring cell phone GPS tracks, police fines, etc.

How South Korea prevents transmission without going to total lockdown -Link
... testing, case follow-up, and a lot of surveillance work ...
... “But the government clearly worries that it will not be enough.”

Life in Seoul amidst the epidemic

Southeast Asia (700m)

Cambodia
Cambodia's PM hints at state of emergency as cases trend up -Link

Myanmar
4/17 In Myanmar, hunger overshadows Covid-19 for Yangon’s poorest -Link

... inspiring charitable donations and labor strikes ...

4/2 Magical spells are a booming business in Myanmar -Link
Myanmar braces for coronavirus after its first confirmed case -Link
3/23 in denial with zero Covid-19 claim -Link
3/20 Rohingya camps a Covid-19 time bomb -Link

Singapore
4/17 Singapore: migrant coronavirus cases highlight containment weak link -Link

... around the world, migrants will be less and less welcome due to carrier chances

4/7 Singapore applies more draconian lockdown -Link
3/23 Singapore's very good response is now being tested by a second wave -Link
... returnees from overseas are a potent risk, same thing China faces. Many countries will close their borders or quarantine or cast a wary eye on foreigners arriving for the near future ...

Indonesia
4/17 Bali’s “mysterious immunity” -Link

... although Indonesia is “widely regarded as a virus ticking time-bomb”

... study predicts case surge: millions head to provinces in post-Ramadan pilgrimages -Link

4/6 Indonesia announces surge in deaths, 24 doctors now dead -Link
3/30 Indonesia deaths > South Korea deaths, Singapore to close most workplaces -Link
3/20 Why Indonesia has the world's highest Covid-19 death rate -Link
... at least for now. But this article is also a good look at what's happening in some of the individual provinces. Probably only the tip of the iceberg.
thousands of Muslim pilgrims ignore virus risk to gather
... “we are more afraid of God ... something more than the body, which is the soul"

Philippines

4/17 In a Manila slum, coronavirus lockdown hits hard -Link

Thailand
Migrant laborers from Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia head home after Thai virus lockdown -Link
Thailand: 80,000+ flee Bangkok for hometowns, rural provinces, using buses -Link

Travelers from 11 countries required to present health certificates before boarding airplanes to Thailand -Link

Malaysia
3/25Lockdown hasn't curbed viral spread, extended to April 14

3/19 "loses its grip on Covid-19 outbreak" -Link
... with doubts rising about new government's ability to contain the spread ...
... 3/17Malaysia closes borders
... 3/13 banned all mass assemblies until 4/30 ...
... 2/27 superspreader religious event + one super-spreader individual

Metro Manila, Philippines under mandatory quarantine

Thailand: arrivals from 4 countries must declare self-quarantine details
... ‘so they can be contacted and officials can go monitor them'...

Europe / North America (1,125m)

4/17 Coronavirus restrictions eased in Europe -Link

... Germany opens schools, some shops -Link

... France will begin opening up May 11 -Link

But, Hungary extends lockdown -Link

And, Russia reports new record daily rise in virus cases -Link

... Russian border town becomes China’s 2nd virus wave frontier -Link

... footage captures chaotic scenes as ambulances queue for hospitals in Moscow -Link

... Putin warns of ‘extraordinary coronavirus crisis, military may be called to assist -Link

Malta says it can no longer rescue, accept migrants -Link

... yet another example of virus fears focusing on migrants as carriers ...

3/29 "Tractors and vodka will cure Belarus of the coronavirus" -Times

3/23 UK telecom operators to share cellular location data w/govt for virus tracking -Teiss

Germany:Up to 70% could become infected

UK will close all schools, colleges, nurseries

3/14France orders all nonessential businesses closed, movement curtailed

3/15Spain weighs liberties against coronavirus

3/12Italy's health care system groans under virus, a warning to the world

Confusion & fear sweep through Italy amid lockdown

3/21 Russia has few coronavirus cases, but a sharp spike in "pneumonia" -Link

North America

3/29 US administraiton extends social distancing guidelines to end of April -WSJ

3/24 Map of states issuing lockdowns -NYT

‘When the checkpoints come': A coronavirus police state in America -Link... look at this as a worst-case scenario ... I think it's improbable but not impossible.

Churches

3/30 Five days of worship at an evangelical megachurch in France, that "set a virus time bomb" -Link
3/29 A Mount Vernon choir went ahead with rehearsal; now dozens have the virus and 2 are dead -
3/30 Pastor of Tampa church that held two large Sunday services arrested, jailed -
Link
3/30 Polls, analysis: "Would they rather be dead right? Support for congregations staying open" -Link/a>
... lots of articles like these because large churches are easy virus vectors ...
... people will forgive mistakes, and even forgive choices that later appear unwise -- but they won't easily forget/forgive intentionally remaining open, endangering people ...

“Prayer in the time of coronavirus” - worshipping in empty pews -Link

Data/Longreads

4/17 Why the world shut down for Covid-19, but not Ebola, SARS or MERS -Link

... Covid-19 not as fatal, but more infectious ...

How long does it take to recover from coronavirus?Link

After coronavirus: six predictions for a new world order -Link

... The ‘long emergency’, the ‘Suez Scenario’, migrant crises, regionalism vs nationalism, more

#Regional Surveys

Covid in Asia: a country-by-country guide fromThe Diplomat-Link

Red Cross: Coronavirus could cause upheaval across the Middle East -Link

... “potentially devastating aftermath... socio-economic earthquake...”

How the spread of coronavirus is testing Africa -Link

Why lockdowns may not work in Africa -Link

Africa could see “millions of coronavirus cases”, tentative WHO forecast shows -Link

... “from thousands now to 10 million within 3 to 6 months”...

... who will want refugees from Africa to cross their borders? ...

... UN report suggests as many as 300,000 could die in Africa -Link

Africa to roll out 1 million coronavirus tests -Link

Complete collapse of economies ahead as Africa faces the virus -Link

In parts of Africa, police accused of excessive force during coronavirus lockdowns -Link

... “an officer in the capital beating a taxi cab driver for violating one-passenger limit” ...

#Migrants

The virus threatens some more than others -Link

... refugees, migrant laborers, poor access to health/sanitation, who can’t afford to miss work

Coronavirus finds fuel in a world of migrants -Link

#ReligiousChanges

How to celebrate some of the most important religious celebrations of the year, virtually -Link

A very different Good Friday, in photographs -Link

Muslims grapple with Ramadan rituals in the coronavirus era -Link

Lockdowns weigh heavily on Orthodox Easter -Link

... will test Eastern Europe’s lockdowns -Link

4/7 Coronavirus is changing the rituals of death for many religions -Link

4/6 As coronavirus layoffs surge in richer countries, poorer ones lose remittance payments -Link

4/3 What coronavirus means for online fraud, forced sex, drug smuggling, wildlife trafficking -Link

4/6 The world's refugee camps are a coronavirus disaster in waiting -Link

3/25 Coronavirus is advancing in poor countries, and the prognosis is troubling -Link

3/19 ‘Wash our hands? Some people can't wash their kids for a week' -Link... refugee camps, etc., going to get hit, and hit hard ...

7 great COVID-19 graphic resources -Link

"How the pandemic will end" - in the USA, anyway -Link

"Virus rebels from France to Florida flout lockdown practices"Link

On stopping it
3/22The virus can be stopped, but only with harsh steps, experts say
3/24Bill Gates: 'best case scenario is 6 to 10 weeks of total isolation in US'

3/11 I found this regularly-updated survey of air travel cancellation policies -Link

Imperial report from UK research center models scenarios -Link... all measures needed, likely until vaccine found ...

TheHammer and the Danceon Medium is an excellent introduction to the Covid-19 issues, esp. as regards to quarantines & lockdowns

Infographic: a visual history of pandemics -Link... from 165 AD to now ...

Technology

How coronavirus tests actually work -Link

3/26 Countries using apps, data networks to keep tabs on the pandemic -Link