Daily News Briefing
Brief. Me - April 20, 2021 2:17 am
Covid-19: High Street chemists start vaccinations in England
BBC News says some High Street pharmacies in England will start vaccinating people from priority groups on Thursday, with 200 providing jabs in the next two weeks.
Six chemists in Halifax, Macclesfield, Widnes, Guildford, Edgware and Telford are the first to offer appointments to those invited by letter.
But pharmacists say many more sites should be allowed to give the jab, not just the largest ones. More than 2.6 million people in the UK have now received their first dose.
City workers urged to complain if forced into the office
CityAM says The City of London Corporation has called on workers to complain if they are being pressured into coming into work during England’s third national lockdown.
They have urged Square Mile workers to file an anonymous complaint if their employers are forcing them to break lockdown rules.
“No one should be travelling into work unless it is absolutely necessary, and those that do should think carefully about whether they truly need to be at their workplace,” said Keith Bottomley, chair of the City’s port health and environment committee.
“If your employer is pressuring you to go into work when you don’t need to, please do speak out.”
Italy’s government plunged into crisis as former PM Renzi pulls support
France24 says Italy’s former premier Matteo Renzi said he was pulling his party’s ministers from the cabinet, effectively leaving the ruling coalition without a majority in parliament.
His decision throws Italy into political chaos even as the country is struggling to contain the Covid-19 pandemic.
Renzi, who heads the tiny Italia Viva party, had long threatened to quit the government, complaining about Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte’s plans over how to spend billions of euros promised by the EU to relaunch the economy.
Australian scientists urge pause on deployment of AstraZeneca vaccine over efficacy concerns, suggest Pfizer or Moderna instead
RT News says Scientists in Australia have called for a halt to the rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine, claiming recent data has cast doubt on the inoculation’s ability to create herd immunity.
The scientists pointed to data from a study published in the Lancet last month that found the British-Swedish vaccine had only 62 per cent efficacy, compared with over 90 per cent for the Pfizer-BioNTech alternative.
A large-scale trial in the UK and Brazil reported a 62 per cent effectiveness for those who were vaccinated with two full doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Australia has already purchased 53 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, however.
COVID-19 deaths soar in Iran as regime pursue nuclear arms
Arab News says deaths from Covid-19 in Iran have exceeded 201,000, Paris-based opposition group the NCRI said on Wednesday. If their estimate is accurate, it means the country has the highest per-capita fatality rate in the world by far.
The figure is almost four times the Iranian government’s official tally. Senior doctors in the country have previously warned that the true total is likely to be much higher than official figures suggest.
India holds massive ‘Kumbh Mela’ festival amid COVID worries
Aljazeera says Hindu pilgrims have descended on the banks of the Ganges river in northern India, shrugging off Covid-19 risks for the start a religious festival that regularly attracts millions.
India’s severe outbreak – the second-most coronavirus infections in the world and more than 150,000 deaths – has not stopped devout Hindus from making the pilgrimage to Haridwar in Uttarakhand state.
“The pandemic is a bit of a worry, but we are taking all precautions,” said organiser Siddharth Chakrapani, who expected between 800,000 and a million people to attend on Thursday alone.
“I am sure Maa Ganga [Mother Ganges] will take care of their safety,” he added, referring to the river considered holy by the faithful.
Now that Trump is impeached again, what’s next?
TRT World says The US House of Representatives impeached Donald Trump for a second time, just days before he is scheduled to leave office, raising questions about what happens next.
The House voted 232-197 to impeach Trump, with 10 members of the Republican Party joining 222 Democrats.
Here are some of the possible scenarios after the House impeached Trump for inciting last week’s attack by his supporters on the US Capitol, as Congress tried to certify Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential election victory.
UK WEATHER FORECAST
Rain, sleet, and snow will persist through much of the day across the UK today with overcast skies. It will, however, be drier in the south-west and for Northern Ireland with some sunny spells.
Rain, snow, and sleet will ease this evening, leaving a dry night. The cloud will also gradually thin throughout the night with weakening winds. The odd shower may linger in coastal areas.
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YOUR QUESTIONS answered
what happened at the capitol?
On January 6, 2021, a mob of rioters supporting United States President Donald Trump’s attempt to overturn his defeat in the 2020 presidential election stormed the U.S. Capitol, breaching security and occupying parts of the building for several hours.
After attending a rally organized by Trump, thousands of his supporters marched down Pennsylvania Avenue before many stormed the United States Capitol in an effort to disrupt the electoral college vote count during a joint session of Congress and prevent the formalization of President-elect Joe Biden’s election victory.
After breaching police perimeters, they occupied, vandalized, and ransacked parts of the building for several hours. The insurrection led to the evacuation and lockdown of the Capitol building and five deaths. – Read on
what does brexit mean?
Brexit was the withdrawal of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU) and the European Atomic Energy Community (EAEC or Euratom) at the end of 31 January 2020 CET.
To date, the UK is the first and only country formally to leave the EU, after 47 years of membership within the bloc, after having first joined its predecessor, the European Communities (EC), on 1 January 1973.
It continued to participate in the European Union Customs Union and European Single Market during a transition period that ended on 31 December 2020 at 23:00 GMT. – Read on
It was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. The World Health Organization declared the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern in January 2020 and a pandemic in March 2020.
Meaning of “coronavirus” and related terminology “coronavirus” means severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)