Come home, don't leave, Australians urged
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Wednesday that all
Australians overseas should come home because of the coronavirus
outbreak, which he warned could last at least six months.
He declared a "human biosecurity emergency", giving the government
the power to close off cities or regions, impose curfews and order
people to quarantine. Government advice was upgraded to an
unprecedented "Level 4: Do not travel" to any country in the world.
$1,000 in your pocket
As the coronavirus threatens to push the global economy into
recession, the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump is
rolling out an unusual idea: handing out free money.
Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin proposed on Tuesday
mailing out checks of up to $1,000 to American adults to quickly
pump hundreds of billions of dollars into the U.S. economy, similar
to the playbook deployed through the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008.
Economists say is one of the most effective measures to blunt the
impact of the virus on the economy. Any such program would need
Olympics make no sense if athletes can't come
Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso said holding the Tokyo
Olympics "would not make sense" if countries could not send their
athletes. He spoke in parliament on Wednesday as a plane took off
from Haneda airport to fly to Athens to collect the Olympic flame.
Athletes are growing increasingly anxious about whether the Games
will go ahead or not as scheduled. Reigning Olympic pole vault
champion Katerina Stefanidi said she wanted to know what the Plan B
was for staging the event.
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There are almost 200,000 cases of coronavirus across 164 countries
and territories, a Reuters tally at 0200 GMT on Wednesday showed.
Outside China, two-thirds of all cases and three-quarters of all
deaths are in Europe. The number of cases in Europe, over 77,000, is
now approaching China's total of 81,054 cases. Europe has recorded
more than 3,800 deaths, around 600 more than China.
(Open https://tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7 in an external browser, to see an
interactive graphic of the coronavirus spread)
Ikea to the rescue
While in Kiev, robbers held up a private seller at gunpoint for
100,000 surgical masks in his car, everyone's favorite furniture
store Ikea came to the rescue of Sweden's biggest hospital when they
stumbled on a pile of 50,000 face masks gathering dust in a
"They were over the moon and said 'what! Wow! Just come!'," said
John Andersson, the head of the team who found them, referring to
the response from Sahlgrenska University Hospital.
"The masks didn't fit into my car so I had to use a company van and
then load it up to the roof. It was jam-packed."
to see a selection of curated coverage about the coronavirus
(Reporting by Cate Cadell; Compiled by Karishma Singh)
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