Roundup #209

New Events

Covid-19 Dashboard


… now: over 9.4 (+1.1) million cases, 483k deaths 
… 6/19: over 8.3 (+0.8) million cases, 450k deaths 
… 6/12: over 7.5 (+0.9m) million cases, 421k deaths 
… 6/5: over 6.6 (+0.8m) million cases, 391k deaths Trackers: Johns HopkinsNYTCovidTracking.com

N. Africa/Egypt-Sudan (266m)

Egypt will gradually resume international flights July 1 
… to allow foreign tourists at select resorts

Libya: UN-backed government re-takes control of Tripoli 
… Haftar’s military failures disappoint his backers; re-assessing position 
… The red line of Sirte: coastal town that is a gateway to oil facilities

Escalating economic protests in Tunisia
… in Tatouine, over unemployment …

E. Africa/Horn (520m)

Somalia: suicide bombing targets major Turkish military base.

W. Africa/Nigeria-Sahel (457m)

Burkina Faso: ‘When the soldiers meant to protect you instead come to kill’ 
… extremists, vigilantes, soldiers are all killing civilians in the north …

About a third of Nigeria’s workforce may be unemployed at end of year.

Fighting in the Sahel has driven 1.7 million from their homes.

W. Asia / Saudi-Iran (303m)

Dubai will re-open to tourists from July 7.

Iraq’s Basra, its richest city, has little water to drink 
… Shatt al-Arab, confluence of Euphrates/Tigris, has become polluted 
… in 2018, 118,000 suffered poisoning due to pollution in water

Lebanon: Over 90k Syrian refugees struggling to find food.

Saudi Arabia will drastically limit the hajj
… The ‘hajj is canceled, and grief rocks the Muslim world’ 
… would ‘welcome very limited numbers of pilgrims’ 
… limited to those nationalities already present in country 
… international pilgrims from outside not permitted 
… first time restrictions placed on the hajj since 1932 
… last year, of 2.49m pilgrims, 1.86m came from outside

South-central Asia (2.1b)

India reports record daily surge in Covid-19 cases.

Delhi converting luxury hotels to Covid-19 care centers
… hotel workers asked to take on role of hospital support staff …

8 hospitals in 24 hours: a pregnant woman’s crisis in the pandemic 
… ‘nowhere would take her… an increasingly common story…’ 
… ‘people in desperate need of treatment keep getting turned away…’

Chenni locked down again as cases surge.

Pakistan: virus cases soaring, but must keep economy open 
… ‘one of the fastest rates in the world… overwhelmed hospitals…’
… ‘trying to salvage a near-collapsed economy’ 
… ‘millions have already slid into poverty from pandemic restrictions’ 
… ‘many ignoring … calls to wear masks, obey social distancing rules…’

Pakistan’s ‘Covid-19 time bomb set to explode

Meanwhile, fighting has intensified in Baluchistan
… #36 on the Top 40 Least

Afghan war intensified in the past 3 months.

‘Divorce isn’t an option’: Afghan women find hope in saffron scheme 
… reveals the impact of drug addiction among men in villages

Central Asia eases lockdowns, cases shoot up.

East Asia (1.6b)

USA: Delta to resume flights between Seattle and Shanghai on 6/25.

China will tighten grip on HK with Chinese security force.

Long read historical survey of events behind India-China border clash
… anger surges in India over the border clash … 
… China blames India for the clash … 
… Chinese structures being built in the Galwan Valley.

Southern China: Worst floods in decades submerge Chongqing 
… 5 meters above flood line … 100k evacuated … homes destroyed …

USA, China in spat over international students… 
… US plans to cancel visas for students with ties to military universities …

Taco Bell to open in Beijing in September.

Various sources report a continued, concerted effort in China to crack down on foreigners 
… more interviews & interrogations. More need for ‘clean computers.’ 
… China sometimes prevents foreigners from leaving using exit bans … 
… Continued reports of foreigners feeling less safe in China … 
… USA continues with ‘do not travel’ warning because of Covid-19… 
… Those who’ve not been able to return because of Covid-19 less likely to go back …

China’s population is aging rapidly
… by 2022, 1 in 7 will be over age 65 … economic implications …

South Korea strengthening entry restrictions for Bangladesh, Pakistan.

N Korea: ‘suspends planned military action against the South’ 
… ‘blowing hot and cold is part of the strategy

Southeast Asia (700m)

Thailand to ease restrictions on foreigners entering … 
… first foreigners allowed in will be largely skilled workers …

Thailand has gone 28 days with no local transmission … 
… took rapid action, has largely stopped the virus … 
… airport screenings, emergency ops center, 95% wearing masks, contact tracing, more …

Democracy disappearing: statues of democracy leaders being taken down 
… On 88th anniversary of Thailand becoming constitutional monarchy …

Europe/North America (1,125m)

USA: How the pandemic has affected passports, global entry, TSA, more
… Interstate disruption: NY, NJ, CT will quarantine travelers from surge states

European Union may bar American visitors as it reopens 
… the final list isn’t out yet.

Spain lifts state of emergency after 3 month lockdown

New Learnings

The pandemic has shifted the conflict patterns in Africa
… wars have intensified, governments have cracked down harder on protests …

How the world is learning to live with Covid-19 
… testing, quick response times, tightened borders, reminders of social distance 
… S Korea: ‘Everyday life quarantine’ 
… will make travel from infected/surging countries to tighter borders more difficult

Slowing Covid-19 is speeding other diseases 
… mass immunization programs halted to slow spread of Covid-19 … 
… polio, diphtheria, cholera, measles all flaring …

The death of cosmopolitanism 
… ‘borders re-opening slowly, arbitrarily…’ 
… ‘fueled by public health concerns, reveals undercurrent of xenophobia’ 
… ‘feels less like the future, more like a return to the past’

Airplane passengers hiding Covid infection show risk of opened borders

The emerging long-term complications of Covid-19, explained
… WHO: severe cases can expect 3 to 6 weeks of recovery 
… in some cases full recovery could take years

The epidemic of contaminated medical waste following Covid-19 
… 240 tons of medical waste per day, 6x normal levels … 
… insufficient incinerators could lead to health issues …

Futuristics/Technology

Safari moving toward password-less logins.

Google will auto-delete new users’ web data after 18 months
… you can set it to delete after 3 months …

Facebook is rolling out a function to notify you if you’re sharing old news
… checks if a link you’re about to post is over 90 days old …