politics

Coronavirus cases in India near 1.3 million: Live updates

India reported more than 49,000 fresh cases of the coronavirus with 740 new deaths, marking the biggest daily surge in infections. Papua New Guinea has put out a call for emergency assistance to the WHO, fearful it might be facing widespread community transmission of the disease. More than 15.5 million people around the world have been diagnosed with COVID-19, and at least 8.8 million people have recovered, while more than 633,000 have died – according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Here are the updates: Friday, July 24 15:05 GMT – Italy imposes quarantine on travellers from Romania, Bulgaria Italian Health Minister Roberto Speranza said he had signed a quarantine order for people who have been in Romania and Bulgaria in the last 14 days, in a move aimed at prevent...

US COVID: CDC updates school guidelines, Trump wants reopenings

The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) late on Thursday issued new guidelines with a heavy focus on reopening schools in the coming months, arguing that children are less likely to experience severe symptoms or spread the virus in schools. Under the new guidelines, the CDC recommends that schools follow precautions based on the level of community transmission in their area. The CDC advises that unless there is substantial, uncontrolled community transmission in an area, schools should try to reopen. “It is critically important for our public health to open schools this fall,” the CDC director said in a statement announcing the guidelines. “School closures have disrupted normal ways of life for children and parents, and they have had negative he...

Lawyers to appeal ‘strange’ ruling denying Ngarivhume bail

HARARE – Jacob Ngarivhume, the main organiser of anti-government protests slated for July 31 was denied bail by a Harare magistrate on Thursday. Harare magistrate Trynos Utahwashe accepted prosecution arguments that the Transform Zimbabwe opposition party leader had used his Twitter account to incite public violence. “From the reading of the allegations, it’s clear that the accused is not encouraging the public to conduct a peaceful demonstration. The right to demonstrate is not an absolute one,” Utahwashe said. “There’s a written law in terms of Covid-19 regulations in Zimbabwe which limits people’s rights to demonstrate, gather or loiter. The fears of the investigating officer that if held the demonstration will be riotous is well-grounded and cannot be dismissed. It’s a matter of l...

Magistrate, lawyer blast police over delays in taking Herbert Gomba to court

HARARE – The mayor of the City of Harare Hebert Gomba appeared in court Thursday charged with corruption over the allocation of housing stands. His lawyer Lovemore Madhuku filed a complaint against the police before magistrate Bianca Makwande. “The accused was arrested by over 20 police officers who did not identify themselves except for one. He was interrogated for over four hours in the absence of his lawyers,” Madhuku said. The magistrate also express dismay with the police for bringing Gomba to court in the afternoon, well knowing that the court closes at 3PM. “We believe all was done to make sure that accused spends the night in remand prison because they know they have a weak case against him,” Madhuku told court. Gomba was not asked to plead to a charge of criminal abuse of office. ...

US nears 4 million coronavirus infections: Live updates

The United States is expected to pass 4 million cases of coronavirus on Thursday, amid a surge in cases, predominantly in southern and western states.  Death toll in Iran from the novel coronavirus has surged past 15,000 as 2,621 people tested positive in the last 24 hours. Papua New Guinea has put out a call for emergency assistance to the WHO, fearful it might be facing widespread community transmission of the disease. More than 15 million people around the world have been diagnosed with COVID-19, and at least 8.6 million people have recovered, while more than 622,000 have died – according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Here are the updates: Thursday, July 23 15:40 GMT – Spain cases jump 2,615 amid surge in new clusters Spain’s number of coronavirus ca...

Ukraine: Man armed with grenade flees after releasing hostage

A crime suspect brandishing a hand grenade has forced a senior police officer to drive him for hours through the Ukrainian countryside before leaving the hostage in the car and fleeing into a forest. Police said on Thursday the released hostage was unharmed and the operation to arrest the kidnapper was continuing. The incident started when officers tried to arrest the man accused of stealing a car outside a court building in the city of Poltava. He took one of them hostage and threatened to blow up the officer and himself with a hand grenade.  He then agreed to swap the officer for the chief of regional criminal police, who took the wheel of a car provided by police at the kidnapper’s request. Police vehicles chased the car for several hours along country roads. Officials identi...

US: Chicago on edge over Trump’s federal forces, violence

Amid a surge in gun violence and protests sparked by the alleged killing of George Floyd, the United States’ third-largest city is on edge, awaiting possible greater tension in the form of a plan by President Donald Trump to dispatch dozens of federal agents to Chicago. The White House plan emerged days after a downtown protest over a statue of Christopher Columbus devolved into a chaotic scene of police swinging batons and demonstrators hurling frozen water bottles, fireworks and other projectiles at officers. Then, on Tuesday in another neighbourhood, a spray of bullets from a car passing a gang member’s funeral wounded 15 people and sent dozens running for their lives. Tension in the city has climbed to a level that, if not unprecedented, has not been felt in a long tim...

Court hears of mystery cell visitor as Chin’ono, Ngarivhume in court

HARARE – The organiser of planned anti-government protests and a freelance journalist were charged in court on Wednesday with promoting public violence and will be kept in jail until a bail ruling on Thursday. Jacob Ngarivhume, the leader of opposition party Transform Zimbabwe and freelance journalist and government critic Hopewell Chin’ono were arrested at their homes on Monday. In court, state prosecutors accused the two of using their Twitter accounts to mobilise Zimbabweans to commit public violence by encouraging citizens to demonstrate on July 31. Activists have called for street demonstrations against government corruption, which they say has deepened the worst economic crisis in more than a decade. The two men, who appeared before different magistrates, were not asked to enter a pl...

Coronavirus cases in Africa pass 750,000 milestone: Live updates

Africa now has more than 751,000 cases, 15,721 deaths and 407,461 recoveries. Worrying trends of coronavirus infection are emerging in southern Europe and in the Balkan region, Mike Ryan, head of the World Health Organization’s emergencies programme, has said. “We’re not out of the woods just yet in the European environment. It requires sustained vigilance,” he added. Almost a quarter of people in New Delhi have had the coronavirus, according to a study that cast serious doubt on the official numbers both in the megacity and across India. More than 14.9 million people around the world have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, nearly 8.5 million have recovered, and nearly 616,000 have died, according to Johns Hopkins University. Here are the updates: W...

Ivory Coast: Former foreign minister to run for president

Marcel Amon-Tanoh, a longtime ally of President Alassane Ouattara and until recently his foreign minister, declared on Wednesday he would run in Ivory Coast’s presidential election in October, breaking with the governing party. The campaign was thrown into uncertainty earlier this month when Ouattara’s choice to succeed him after a decade in power, Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, died suddenly, leaving the ruling RHDP party scrambling to choose a replacement candidate. The October 31 election is seen as a key test of stability for Ivory Coast, the world’s top cocoa producer. Ouattara’s first election win in 2010 sparked a civil war fought largely along regional and ethnic lines that killed about 3,000 people. Source close to Amon-Tanoh said he would create his ...

Trump can’t decide between states’ rights and federal authority

When it comes to states’ rights, President Donald Trump is all over the map. To battle the coronavirus, he has told states they are largely on their own. But when it comes to stamping out protests in cities led by Democrats, Trump is sending in federal troops and agents- even when local leaders are begging him to leave. His is a driven-by-expedience approach that has been a hallmark of his stormy presidency, one that has little to do with ideology and more to do with re-election efforts. “After seeing Trump in the White House for three and a half years, anyone expecting to find classical ideological consistency is bound to be mistaken,” Andrew J Polsky, a political science professor at Hunter College, told the Associated Press. “All of this is do...

Mnangagwa announces curfew ahead of anti-government protests

HARARE – Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa said on Tuesday that security forces would enforce a dusk to dawn curfew from Wednesday to combat the coronavirus outbreak. But critics and the opposition say authorities want to stop anti-government protests planned for next week by activists who say government corruption has worsened economic hardships. On Monday, police arrested opposition leader Jacob Ngarivhume and a journalist Hopewell Chin’ono, accusing them of inciting violence ahead of July 31 demonstrations. “As of tomorrow, Wednesday, … all our security services must enforce a dusk-to-dawn curfew set to come into force daily between 6PM and 6AM,” Mnangagwa said in a televised address to the nation. He said anyone who encouraged actions that undermine the government’s measures “wil...