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Daily News Briefing: Sports Direct stays open despite new measures – Wuhan lockdown to end in April & Saudi’s curfew praised

mike ashley keeps sports direct open

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In Tuesday’s News briefing, The headlines are – UK, Sports Direct has vowed to keep trading despite new government measures calling for non-essential shops to close. 

Saudi Arabia has increased measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The curfew has been welcomed as it takes the social pressure off people to join family gatherings. 

China, the province of Hubei, which has been in lockdown since January, is set to reopen March 25. Travel restrictions will also be lifted off the central city Wuhan – where the virus originated- in April. 

US, confirmed cases in the United States has now surpassed 35,000. The US is now the third-highest infected country in the world. 

Sport, IOC urged to make a quick Olympic Games decision, after US backs postponement. 

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Coronavirus: Sports Direct vows to keep shops open despite new curbs

BBC News says Sports Direct has said it will keep its stores open, despite new curbs aimed at limiting the spread of the coronavirus.

New measures were announced by Boris Johnson on Monday night. All UK shops selling non-essential goods have been ordered to close immediately. 

Among those staying open are petrol stations, supermarkets and pharmacies. 

But Sports Direct said it would remain open “where possible.”

They say they are “uniquely well placed to help keep the UK as fit and healthy as possible.”

Arguing that it provided an essential service, bosses at the company said the sports equipment it sells can be used to exercise at home. 

Read the full story on BBC News

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Saudi curfew praised as coronavirus measures increased

Arab News says, Saudi ministers, government officials and embassies around the world launched a united campaign a day before the official announcement of the partial curfew to encourage citizens and residents to stay home and prevent the spread of coronavirus

The curfew, announced by the Saudi government at 2.am on Monday morning, came as no surprise to most. Some welcomed the news as it relieved social pressure to join family gatherings, a custom that persists despite the pandemic because of its deep roots in Saudi culture. 

Many citizens have already followed the government’s campaign to inform citizens of the importance of social distancing and protecting the vulnerable.

Read the full story on Arab News

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China’s lockdown province of Hubei, where the coronavirus originated, to reopen 25 March 

RT News says Beijing is lifting travel restrictions on Hubei province on Wednesday, as the country’s fight against Covid-19 is yielding positive results. Even curbs on the city on Wuhan, where the virus first emerged, will be lifted in April. 

Residents will be allowed to travel in and out of the country’s central Hubei Province from March 25, regional health commission has announced. Travel bans in the region’s capital Wuhan will be lifted on April 8. 

Wuhan was the first city in China to be quarantined. And along with other Hubei major cities remained on lockdown since late January. The lockdown was part of a nationwide effort to slow down the spread of the disease.

Read the full story on RT News

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US coronavirus cases surpass 35,000, now the third-highest infected nation in the world

Fox News says the number of new coronavirus cases in the US has spiked over 35,000 on Monday. The US is now the nation with the third-highest number of infections in the world, behind only Italy and China. 

The death toll in the US from the Covid-19 virus reached 471 – the sixth highest in the world. 

US health officials have said coronavirus cases will rise as testing becomes more widely available. All 50 states have reported confirmed cases. New York has the largest number of cases at nearly 17,000. Washington state has the second-highest number of cases at 1,996. 

States and cities have taken dramatic measures to contain the virus. Many businesses and restaurants and schools have closed and residents told to self-isolate.

Read the full story on Fox News

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IOC urged to make a quick Olympic decision as US backs postponement

France24 says The International Olympic Committee came under pressure to speed up its decision about postponing the Tokyo Games. Athletes have criticised the four-week deadline and the United States joined calls to delay the competition. 

Canada and Australia have withdrawn their teams and the world is hunkering down for the coronavirus pandemic. The US Olympic Committee said the postponement was the best way forward. 

A growing group of national Olympic committees and sports bodies including World Athletics have called for the Games, set to start on July 24, to be pushed back, an outcome that now appears inevitable.

IOC officials are studying a postponement, among other options, but believe a decision would be “premature” four months from the scheduled start. They will make an announcement within four weeks.

Read the full story on France24

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