Brief. Me Better Faster September 24, 2021 4:26 pm



Covid-19: World leaders call for international pandemic treaty

BBC News says Boris Johnson has joined more than 20 world leaders in calling for a new global settlement to help the world prepare for future pandemics.

In an article for newspapers around the world, leaders including President Macron of France and German chancellor Angela Merkel say Covid has posed the biggest challenge since WW2.

Another pandemic or health crisis is a matter of “not if, but when”, they say. And the pandemic has shown that “nobody is safe until everyone is safe”.

Read on

Ghislaine Maxwell faces new charges, including sex trafficking of a minor

The Guardian says Ghislaine Maxwell, the British socialite accused of aiding in her former partner Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual abuse of minor girls, faces two more charges, a new Manhattan federal court indictment filed on Monday reveals.

This indictment also identified a new accuser in the case, referred to as “minor victim-4” in court papers, and expanded the timeframe of Maxwell’s alleged participation in Epstein’s abuse by seven years – from 1994 to 2004, rather than from 1994 to 1997. Maxwell now faces a total of eight counts.

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Death toll from Myanmar junta’s crackdown on protests passes 500

France24 says more than 500 people have been killed in the Myanmar junta’s brutal crackdown on protests against its coup to oust civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi, a local monitoring group said Tuesday.

The grim toll was passed as world powers ramped up their condemnation of the military’s ruthless campaign against the movement demanding the restoration of democracy and release of Suu Kyi.

Washington suspended a trade pact with Myanmar and UN chief Antonio Guterres called for a united global front to put pressure on the junta after more than 100 protesters were killed in a bloody weekend of violence.

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Palestinians get 100,000 vaccine doses from China

Arab News says Palestinians have received 100,000 doses of Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine donated by China to help broaden an initial campaign to vaccinate medical staff, the elderly and the chronically ill.

Palestinian health authorities have been mounting a limited vaccination drive among the 5.2 million people living in the Israel-occupied West Bank and Gaza, using vaccines provided by Israel, Russia, the UAE and the global COVAX vaccine-sharing initiative.

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Traffic in Suez Canal resumes after stranded ship refloated

Aljazeera says shipping traffic through Egypt’s Suez Canal resumed on Monday after a giant container ship that blocked the busy waterway for almost a week was refloated.

Live footage on a local television station showed the ship surrounded by tug boats moving slowly in the centre of the canal. The station, ExtraNews, said the ship was moving at a speed of 1.5 knots (2.8kmph).

“Admiral Osama Rabie, the Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority [SCA], announces the resumption of maritime traffic in the Suez Canal after the Authority successfully rescues and floats the giant Panamanian container ship EVER GIVEN,” a statement from the SCA said.

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Biden: 90% of US Adults Will Be Eligible for COVID Vaccine by April 19

VOA says Nine out of 10 adults in the United States will be eligible for a coronavirus vaccine three weeks from now, President Joe Biden announced Monday during remarks that were dosed with a warning of a devastating resurgence of COVID-19 in the country.

“We’re in a life-and-death race with a virus that is spreading quickly with cases rising again,” Biden said. “New variants are spreading and, sadly, some of the reckless behaviour we’ve seen on television over the past few weeks means that more new cases are to come in the weeks ahead.”

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WHO: Covid-19 ‘very likely’ first jumped into humans from animals

TRT World says a joint WHO-China study on the origins of Covid-19 says that transmission of the virus from bats to humans through another animal is the most likely scenario and that a lab leak is “extremely unlikely,” according to a draft copy.

The findings offer little new insight into how the virus first emerged and leave many questions unanswered. 

But the report does provide more detail on the reasoning behind the researchers’ conclusions.

Read on


Live Updates

  • World leaders call for international pandemic treaty
  • Ghislaine Maxwell faces new charges, including sex trafficking of a minor
  • Death toll from Myanmar junta’s crackdown on protests passes 500
  • Palestinians get 100,000 vaccine doses from China
  • Traffic in Suez Canal resumes after stranded ship refloated
  • Biden: 90% of US Adults Will Be Eligible for COVID Vaccine by April 19
News Briefing


Most of Monday’s front pages carry the story England is on track to reopen and world leaders are calling for a pandemic treaty. 

The Times reports the PM has told people to go out and “have fun” as some lockdown restrictions have been eased in England. The PM said there was nothing in the data “that would cause us to deviate from the road map” for reopening shops and allowing pubs and restaurants to serve outdoors from 12 April, the paper reports. But he urged people to follow the rule and “remain humble in the face of nature.” 

Also featured on the front splash is the story of the George Floyd trial starting and reports of a surge in claims of sexual abuse by pupils at state schools. 

Read the full story on The Times


The Sun leads with the PM’s Downing Street briefing telling Brits to boost their Covid resilience by taking advantage of the warmer weather and getting fit. The PM said he couldn’t wait to play tennis again. 

Read the full story on The Sun


The i leads with the PM’s briefing announcement that the bottling of 60 million Novavax vaccine doses will take place in the UK instead of the EU. The paper says the new deal will help the UK cope with potential vaccine export bans and other global supply chain issues. 

Read the full story on the i


Meanwhile, the Daily Telegraph leads with the PM and other world leaders calling for a global settlement similar to that formed after WW2. The pandemic treaty is to protect states in the wake of another pandemic. In an article for the paper, they caution that the virus has been a “stark and painful reminder that nobody is safe until everyone is safe.” 

Read the full story on the Daily Telegraph

News Briefing



A spat over Covid vaccine doses has erupted between the European Union and the UK threatens to have far reaching implications over coronavirus jab disruption.

Brussels demanded access to AstraZeneca vaccines manufactured in UK plants to make up for a shortfall after the pharmaceutical giant said it would have to cut the amount of doses delivered to the bloc by the end of March.

What do we know about the dispute? And what potential implications could the rumbling dispute have on future Covid vaccine rollouts? – (ITV)

Recent and upcoming changes

Restrictions are easing across the UK.

In England

Step 1 of the roadmap out of lockdown has begun. Shielding ends on 31 March.

In Scotland

People will be asked to ‘Stay Local’ from 2 April. A timetable for further lockdown easing from 5 April is on GOV.SCOT.

In Wales

The stay at home restriction was lifted on 13 March. Read about the rules on GOV.WALES.

In Northern Ireland

The next review will happen on or before 15 April. You can read the guidance on current restrictions on nidirect.

latest Covid-19 news

For the latest Covid-19 news visit the UK governement website 

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