Friday 15 May
Friday 15 May 2020 News Briefing – Today’s headlines are dominated by the global Coronavirus Pandemic. As of 6:30 am (GMT), these are the global active numbers.
The top story this Friday morning: Doctors ‘told not to discuss PPE shortages’ — evidence shows pressure is being applied to doctors to not publicly discuss their concerns.
Global COVID-19 UPDATE
Coronavirus Cases: 4,527,328
- Coronavirus: Global cases top 4.5 million.
- UK Doctors ‘told not to discuss PPE’.
- NHS advisory board split over ditching NHS app.
- Lebanon imposes total shutdown as cases increase.
- Erdogan attacks opposition mayors over virus aid.
- ‘Whistleblower’ becomes anti-Trump hero pinning the blame on the White House.
Doctors ‘told not to discuss PPE shortage’
BBC News says some NHS managers have tried to stop doctors speaking publicly about shortages of personal protective equipment, the BBC has been told.
WhistleblowersUK said more than 100 healthcare workers had contacted them since the beginning of March, raising concerns about Covid-19 and PPE.
The Department of Health said no one should be prevented from speaking up.
But Newsnight has seen evidence of pressure being applied to doctors to not share concerns they have about PPE.
Read the full story on BBC News
NHS coronavirus advisory board split over ditching NHS app
The Guardian says the NHS coronavirus app’s advisory board is split over whether it has the authority to tell the government to ditch its version and switch to a decentralised model proposed by Apple and Google.
After a meeting on Thursday, it emerged that members argued their role on the board is limited to providing guidance on ethical questions – and not to branch out into a broader discussion of whether the app is the right tool for the job.
Read the full story on The Guardian
Lebanon impose ‘total’ shutdown as cases increase
WTX News says Lebanon has imposed a “total” shutdown after experiencing a resurgence in reported Coronavirus cases.
Lebanon will go under full shutdown for four days, Cabinet said Tuesday, as the country records a rise in the number of coronavirus cases.
The lockdown is set to begin May 13 at 7 p.m. and end May 18, according to the government’s decision, with details and exceptions to be announced by Interior Minister Mohammad Fahmi.
Read the full story on WTX News
Erdogan attacks opposition mayors over virus aid
France24 says on the Turkish capital’s bridges and bus stops, Ankara mayor Mansur Yavas urges wealthier residents to help poorer citizens during the coronavirus pandemic by paying off their debts to grocers.
“Kindness is more contagious than disease,” the advert proclaims, showing a large black book with the word “paid” in red.
Read the full story on France24
‘We’re in deep s***t’: Ousted ‘whistleblower’ Dr Bright becomes new anti-Trump hero pinning the blame on the White House
RT News says mainstream media has elevated National Institutes of Health whistleblower, Dr Rick Bright, to heroic status after his congressional testimony denounced Trump’s Covid-19 response as borderline criminally negligent.
Bright painted a disturbing picture of a government flying blindly into a disaster on Thursday during his testimony on the administration’s Covid-19 response before a subcommittee of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
Read the full story on RT News
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A quick look at the other top stories from around the world.
Superbowl champion uses his doctorate in medicine to tackle Covid-19
The Independent says Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, is helping tackle the coronavirus pandemic by volunteering at a local nursing home.
The NFL player, who won the Super Bowl in February, decided to use his doctorate in medicine from McGill University, to help tackle the outbreak in Montreal, Canada.
France records sharp drop in crime during lockdown
EuroNews says recorded cases of thefts, sexual violence and burglaries have fallen across France since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, official statistics show.
Twelve terror suspects found dead in their cells
BBC News says twelve people arrested on suspicion of terror offences have been found dead in their police cells in Burkina Faso.
The prosecutor for the town of Fada N’Gourma said 25 people had been detained overnight on Monday, and “unfortunately, 12 of them have died during the course of the night in the cells they were being held in”.
Noose tightens around Iran with sanctions threat by US
Arab News says the US has publicly threatened to trigger the restoration of all UN sanctions on Iran if the organization’s Security Council fails to extend an arms embargo on Tehran.
It is due to expire in October as part of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, commonly referred to as the Iran nuclear deal.
Hong Kong police watchdog to release a report on protest response
Aljazeera News says Hong Kong’s police watchdog will release a much-anticipated report on Friday afternoon into the force’s handling of months of sometimes violent anti-government protests in the Chinese-ruled city.
New Zealand reopens as lockdown eases
Metro says thousands of New Zealand businesses reopened today as the country relaxed its coronavirus lockdown. A barber opened his store as soon as the clock struck midnight – the moment the country lifted most of its restrictions. Retail stores, shopping centres, and restaurants were all allowed to reopen, with many people returning to their workplaces.