As the global COVID-19 count has exceeded 214,000, with over 8,700 fatalities, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday that over $43 million have already been donated to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. Another important development Argentina, Bahrain, Canada, France, Iran, Norway, South Africa, Spain and Switzerland have joined the WHO's 'Solidarity' trial for comparing untested COVID-19 treatments
MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 19th March, 2020) As the global COVID-19 count has exceeded 214,000, with over 8,700 fatalities, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday that over $43 million have already been donated to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. Another important development Argentina, Bahrain, Canada, France, Iran, Norway, South Africa, Spain and Switzerland have joined the WHO's 'Solidarity' trial for comparing untested COVID-19 treatments. While the WHO sees the coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity to "come together," not everyone seems to share the same views, with US President Donald Trump accusing China of failing to give the United States a notice of the outbreak in due time.
Kyrgyzstan, Gambia and Djibouti have reported their first COVID-19 cases.
The first deaths have been reported in Turkey, Moldova, Bangladesh and Cuba. Croatia has reported the first suspected death from COVID-19. The victim was under self-isolation on suspicion of having contracted COVID-19 after contact with an infected person.
France has registered 1,400 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 9,134, while the death toll has increased by 89 during the same period to total 264.
Italy's death toll from COVID-19 has surged dramatically over the past 24 hours, reaching 2,978 after seeing a 475 increase. The number of confirmed cases now exceeded 35,700.
The United Kingdom has recorded its largest day-on-day increase in the number of confirmed coronavirus disease cases, as 676 more people have tested positive over the preceding 24 hours, bringing the overall total since the start of the outbreak to 2,626. The death toll has reached 104.
A 103-year-old Iranian woman has recovered after being infected with COVID-19 despite being part of the most at-risk age group, state news agency IRNA reported. In the meantime, Iran's COVID-19 count has reached 17,361, with the death toll amounting to 1,135.
A COVID-19-positive man, who had visited a bar and a club with an intention to spread the virus, died in Japan, Kyodo news agency reported,
The only dog that has tested positive for COVID-19 has died after undergoing treatment and returning to Hong Kong, South China Morning Post reported.
Canada will provide up to $56 billion in economic support for national households and businesses amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Wednesday.
The Council of the European Union has coordinated the possibility to allocate 37 billion euros ($40.2 billion) to the EU member states from different EU funds to fight COVID-19-related problems. The decision is now to be discussed by the European Parliament.
The government of Venezuela is asking the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to provide $5 billion to help the country address the COVID-19 outbreak, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said in a letter to IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva. However, IMF has reportedly said it cannot study this request.
The US is suspending routine visa services in most of the countries indefinitely to prevent further spread of COVID-19.
Switzerland stops issuing entry visas for foreign nationals and closes airspace for flights from Spain, Italy, France, Germany, Austria and countries that are not party to the Schengen agreement, according to the decision of the Federal Council.
Switzerland is also introducing restrictions on sales of certain over-the-counter medications, including aspirin and paracetamol, for six months amid the COVID-19 pandemic, one person will be allowed to buy one package only.
Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin ordered temporary restrictions on flights to and from the UK, the US, the United Arab Emirates, starting Friday.
All the schools across the UK will close on Friday afternoon, after lessons, due to the coronavirus pandemic, Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson said.
The UAE Foreign Ministry has announced a permanent ban on UAE citizens' foreign trips.
Japan has decided to revoke visas already issued for citizens of almost all European countries, Iran and Egypt, and will also impose a mandatory two-week quarantine for arrivals from these countries, as the global number of COVID-19 cases is growing, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday.
The Nigerian government is imposing restrictions on entry from 13 countries, including France, the US and the UK. Those arriving from there will have to enter 14-day self-isolation. Apart from that, visas issued to the citizens of these countries will be revoked.
The Libyan National Army (LNA) has announced the closure of the country's land borders that are under its control, to prevent coronavirus spread. The LNA controls 95 percent of Libya's territory.
The Montenegrin government adopted a package of 20 urgent measures, soon after the first COVID-19 case was confirmed there. The response includes a ban on railroad travel inside the country, sports facilities closure and isolation at home for those arriving from abroad.
The Romanian government has suspended air travel with Spain, also introducing a ban on public events and limiting restaurants operation.
Venezuela's National Institute of Civil Aviation has announced a complete cessation of passenger airline service inside the country and a ban on receiving planes from other countries, as part of the national quarantine.
Malaysia's Higher Education Ministry has suspended all learning beginning on Wednesday, including via the internet, in all higher education institutions across the country, until March 31. The government's Movement Control Order, aimed at preventing COVID-19 spread, has entered into force and will also be effective through the end of the month.
Kyrgyzstan has suspended the issuance of entry visas for foreign citizens.
Portugal has declared a state of emergency from Thursday for at least 15 days.
President of the Dominican Republic, Danilo Medina, has announced the intention to declare a state of emergency and shut all borders for 15 days beginning on March 19 as precautionary measures against the spread of the coronavirus disease.
Tunisia and Peru have imposed curfews.
Organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest announced on Wednesday the cancellation of this year's edition of the contest, which was due to take place in the Netherlands in May, over the COVID-19 outbreak.
The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, one of the most prestigious gatherings of the advertising industry, has been postponed from June to October.
The Glastonbury festival, which was due to run from June 24-28 and include Paul McCartney, Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar as headliners, has been canceled as a result of the pandemic.
China's permanent representative to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, has confirmed that the UN Security Council has delayed to a later date the meetings, scheduled for this week.
US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said that the Department of Defense believes it will take 12 to 18 months to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus.
The WHO director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that the first tests of vaccines had already started, calling on researchers from across the world to assess experimental medications systematically. He also said that starting trials of vaccines against the novel coronavirus a mere two months after its genetic sequence had been shared internationally is an "incredible achievement."
The deputy head of the virology department of the Moscow State University's biological faculty, Olga Karpova, told Sputnik that a prototype of a new vaccine could be ready within three months already.