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  • Trump offers competing coronavirus messaging, warning of death but lamenting lockdown news

    Trump repeated a favorite refrain of some conservatives, who have said that the coronavirus “cure”—that is, a nationwide shutdown—cannot be worse than the disease itself.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 21:39:40 -0400
  • Why does the coronavirus affect people differently? Yahoo News Explains news

    Coronavirus patients are showing a wide range of symptoms and the exact reason why is still a mystery — but we do have some clues as to what factors can influence the severity of the disease.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 15:10:26 -0400
  • An Illinois man allegedly shot his wife then himself over coronavirus fears news

    Experts predicted the stresses of the coronavirus pandemic and lockdowns could lead to an uptick in domestic violence.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 16:19:30 -0400
  • New York new coronavirus cases 'dropping for first time' news

    New infections and deaths are down in New York, but officials say the danger for Americans is still high.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 17:28:20 -0400
  • Televangelist Kenneth Copeland 'blows wind of God' at coronavirus and claims pandemic is 'destroyed' in sermon news

    American televangelist Kenneth Copeland, who recently claimed that the coronavirus pandemic will be "over much sooner you think" because "Christian people all over this country praying have overwhelmed it," has summoned the "wind of God" to destroy the novel coronavirus during a recent sermon.Before blowing at the camera, he said: "I blow the wind of God on you. You are destroyed forever, and you'll never be back. Thank you, God. Let it happen. Cause it to happen."

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 15:46:00 -0400
  • Coronavirus pandemic disrupts Appalachian Trail dreams news

    When Alexandra Eagle first mentioned plans to hike the entire Appalachian Trail alongside her new husband, her sister told her they'd either be divorced in five months or married forever. Eagle, 33, and Jonathan Hall, 36, had just moved out of their Brooklyn apartment when they married on March 2, the third anniversary of the blind date that brought them together. “This was going to be an epic adventure,” Eagle told The Associated Press.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 01:07:04 -0400
  • Saudi Arabia delays setting May prices, looks to OPEC meeting to settle price war news

    Saudi Arabia is taking unprecedented action in delaying the release of its international crude selling prices by five days, a senior Saudi source familiar with the matter said on Sunday, as the kingdom and other major producers seek to halt the free-fall in worldwide crude prices. A month-long price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia, against the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic, has cut the price of crude to $34 a barrel from $65.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 05:12:48 -0400
  • Japan’s Abe Set to Declare State of Emergency, Media Say news

    (Bloomberg) -- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is set to declare a state of emergency within days, after coronavirus cases in Tokyo jumped over the weekend to top 1,000 for the first time and raised worries of a more explosive surge, media reports said.Abe will announce the plan as soon as Monday, with the formal declaration for the Tokyo area coming as early as Tuesday, the Yomiuri newspaper reported, without attribution. Osaka is also likely to be included, while Hyogo, Saitama and Hokkaido prefectures are under consideration, according to Kyodo News and other media reports. Japan’s biggest-ever stimulus package worth 60 trillion yen ($550 billion) may also be announced Tuesday.Abe is expected to call a meeting of his advisory panel on the virus before announcing the decision. The state of emergency will be issued for specific areas and a time period will be set.Abe’s government saw its approval rating slip to its lowest since October 2018 in a poll from broadcaster JNN released Monday with a majority of respondents faulting the way the government has managed the virus crisis. The poll taken April 4-5 showed that about 80% of respondents said the declaration should be made.While Abe’s government has said the country is on the brink of an explosive surge, it has resisted calls to declare an emergency. The governors of Tokyo and Osaka have been pushing for the declaration as the recent spike in cases sparked concerns Japan is headed for a crisis on the levels seen in the U.S. and several countries in Europe.Declaring a state of emergency hands powers to local governments, including to urge residents to stay at home. By contrast with some other countries though, there is no legal power to enforce such requests due to civil liberties protections in Japanese law.While Japan was one of the first countries outside of the original epicenter in neighboring China to confirm a coronavirus infection, it has fared better than most, with about 3,150 reported cases as of Monday -- a jump from less than 500 just a month ago. That’s the lowest tally of any Group of Seven country, although Japan might be finding fewer mild cases because it has conducted a relatively small number of tests.Last week, the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo advised American citizens to return home, saying Japan’s low testing rate makes it hard to accurately assess the prevalence of the virus. The Japan Medical Association warned last week that the jump in cases in the nation’s most populous cities is putting more pressure on medical resources and that the government should declare a state of emergency.Tokyo reported 143 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, its largest single day. It marked the second straight day the city’s daily infection tally exceeded 100.Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike is already pressing residents to avoid unnecessary outings, and television showed many of the capital’s main shopping areas almost deserted over the weekend. The Tokyo local government is set to begin leasing hotels this week to accommodate mild cases, to make room in its hospitals for the seriously ill.Abe told parliament Friday that the situation didn’t yet warrant an emergency declaration, but said he wouldn’t hesitate to take the step if the time comes.(Updates with details throughout)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 21:20:17 -0400
  • Iran to restart 'low-risk' economic activities soon news

    Iran said Sunday it will allow "low-risk" economic activities to resume from April 11 as its daily coronavirus infection rates slowed for a fifth straight day. "Restarting these activities does not mean we have abandoned the principle of staying at home," President Hassan Rouhani said at a meeting of Iran's anti-coronavirus task force. The president, whose country has been battered by US economic sanctions, did not specify what qualified as "low risk" activities, but said bans would remain on schools and large gatherings.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 12:24:11 -0400
  • Face masks: How the Trump administration went from 'no need' to 'put one on' to fight coronavirus news

    Just a little over a month after saying there was no need for the community at large to wear masks in public, the CDC has changed its mind, recommending that all Americans should wear some sort of face covering when venturing outside.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 14:58:52 -0400
  • Trump defends firing ‘terrible’ intel community watchdog as Republicans question sacking news

    “I thought he did a terrible job,” Trump said of Michael Atkinson.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 16:06:03 -0400
  • 'I'm worried that I have infected 1000 people in the last three days': Amazon workers reveal all the reasons why they're afraid to go to work news

    Amazon workers claim the company is not doing enough to prevent the spread of COVID-19 throughout their facilities and the communities they serve.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 13:06:52 -0400
  • Two children hospitalized after eating THC candy from a food bank news

    At least five children ate candy containing high THC doses after the Utah Food Bank distributed it as part of their food donations, police said.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 19:32:18 -0400
  • Coronavirus: Germany and France accuse US of taking face masks as international tensions rise news

    Germany and France have accused the US of taking face masks already ordered by Europe as the coronavirus pandemic continued to cause rising international tensions.Politicians in Berlin and Paris both said America had been using unfair means to undermine their own attempts to secure personal protective equipment.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 08:56:11 -0400
  • Birx: 'It's giving us hope of what our future can be' news

    Dr. Deborah Birx on Sunday spoke about the declining numbers of new coronavirus cases and deaths in Spain and Italy. She believes it can offer hope to the United States.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 20:28:19 -0400
  • Scots' medical chief resigns after flouting own coronavirus rules news

    Scotland's Chief Medical Officer Catherine Calderwood resigned on Sunday after she broke her own advice to stay at home to help slow the spread of the coronavirus by visiting her second home this weekend and last. Calderwood said that during discussions with Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Sunday evening they agreed her actions risked distracting from the "hugely important job that government and the medical profession has to do in getting the country through this coronavirus pandemic". Police had earlier issued a warning to Calderwood about her behaviour and Sturgeon had removed her as the public face of the campaign to tackle the coronavirus.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 12:40:24 -0400
  • UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson hospitalized with virus news

    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was admitted to a hospital Sunday for tests, his office said, because he is still suffering symptoms, 10 days after he was diagnosed with COVID-19. The prime minister's Downing St. office said it was a “precautionary step” and Johnson remains in charge of the government. Johnson, 55, has been quarantined in his Downing St. residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26 — the first known head of government to fall ill with the virus.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 16:27:02 -0400
  • Asia virus latest: Australia sends away ships, Pakistan hunts worshippers news

    The largest maritime operation ever undertaken in Sydney Harbour was completed on Sunday with the successful restocking and refuelling of five cruise ships, Australian police said. It was part of government efforts since mid-March to force vessels to leave the country's waters to prevent any further spread of the coronavirus in Australia. Cruise ship guests have so far accounted for almost 10 percent of Australia's more than 5,500 infections.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 05:23:04 -0400
  • Coronavirus: Australia launches criminal investigation into Ruby Princess news

    Passengers from the Ruby Princess disembarked in Sydney without knowing the coronavirus was on board.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 06:26:12 -0400
  • Does Iran's coronavirus crisis raise the risk of war? news

    Iran is experiencing on of the worst outbreaks of coronavirus in the world. Will the instability cause the country's leaders to lash out against America?

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 09:14:33 -0400
  • A tiger at the Bronx Zoo tested positive for COVID-19 after coming into contact with an asymptomatic caretaker news

    A caretaker at the zoo was infected but asymptomatic, and infected the tiger, along with other big cats.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 17:25:00 -0400
  • Woman needed stitches after anti-Asian hate crime attack on city bus, NYPD says news

    An unidentified woman and three teens are alleged to have attacked a 51-year-old Asian woman, hitting her on the head with an umbrella after making anti-Asian remarks.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 11:57:00 -0400
  • Blame the Chinese Communist Party for the coronavirus crisis news

    Coronavirus crisis proves communism is still a grave threat to the entire world. If Beijing had just been honest, the pandemic could be preventable.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 06:00:12 -0400
  • Japan Won’t Hesitate to Declare Emergency if Needed: Nishimura news

    (Bloomberg) -- Japan will not hesitate to declare a state of emergency over the coronavirus pandemic if there is any sign of an explosive spike in infections, Japan’s Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said.“We’ve been saying that we are on the brink of the brink, but it’s becoming a very tense situation,” Nishimura said during a Fuji Television broadcast Sunday. “Nationwide rampancy of virus infections is really approaching just right now.”Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has come under increasing pressure to declare a state of emergency to contain the spread of Covid-19. Tokyo reported more than 110 new coronavirus cases Saturday, the first time the daily toll of confirmed infections has exceeded 100, national broadcaster NHK reported. The were 336 new cases nationwide, the health ministry said.Hiroshi Mikitani, founder of Japan’s e-commerce giant Rakuten Inc., on Friday joined the call for Abe to declare a state of emergency. The prime minister told parliament Friday that the situation didn’t yet warrant an emergency declaration, but said he wouldn’t hesitate to do so when the time comes.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 23:35:46 -0400
  • Oil prices decline $3 a barrel as market remains uncertain on supply outlook news

    Global benchmark oil prices traded as much as $3 a barrel lower as the market opened for Monday's trading session, reflecting fears of oversupply after Saudi Arabia and Russia postponed to Thursday a meeting about a potential pact to cut production. Late last week, prices had surged, with both U.S. and Brent contracts posting their largest weekly percentage gains on record due to hopes that OPEC and its allies would strike a global deal to cut crude supply worldwide. The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus has cut demand and a month-long price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia has left the market awash in crude.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 15:44:58 -0400
  • Europe sees more signs of hope as Italy's virus curve falls news

    Europe saw further signs of hope in the coronavirus outbreak Sunday as Italy's daily death toll was at its lowest in more than two weeks and its infection curve was finally on a downward slope. Angelo Borrelli, the head of Italy's Civil Protection agency on Sunday, said there were 525 deaths in the 24-hour period since Saturday evening. Italy now has a total of 15,887 deaths and nearly 129,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 13:51:52 -0400
  • There’s nothing pro-life about exploiting a pandemic to further a political agenda news

    It’s already apparent a small minority of zealots will do everything they can to use the coronavirus crisis to eradicate the right to an abortion Sign up for the Week in Patriarchy, a newsletter​ on feminism and sexism sent every Saturday. Texas says abortion not essential, church services areCoronavirus is an unprecedented public health crisis. But, for some Republicans, it’s also a political opportunity: anti-abortion activists are ruthlessly using the pandemic as an excuse to crack down on reproductive rights. Six conservative states – Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma and Texas – have categorized abortions as non-essential, except in very limited cases, effectively banning access to the procedure during the pandemic.Federal judges have stopped the bans from going into effect in most of these states. However, on Tuesday an appeals court ruled that Texas could reinstate its abortion ban. On the same day women were told that their reproductive rights were considered dispensable, Texas’s Governor Greg Abbott declared that religious services were “essential” and in-person gatherings could continue during the pandemic. This is despite the fact that there have been multiple cases of coronavirus spreading in places of worship, with people dying as a result.Getting an abortion in Texas wasn’t exactly easy before Covid-19; the state has 21 clinics for 6 million women of reproductive age. But now desperate women are going to be forced to put themselves in danger by traveling long distances to get care in neighboring states. According to the Guttmacher Institute the Texas ban has increased one-way distances to an abortion clinic from 12 miles to 243 miles; that’s an increase of almost 2,000%. As is the case with all restrictions on abortion, the burden will fall disproportionately on low-income women without the resources to travel.It is also likely that the Texas abortion ban will result in more women attempting dangerous DIY procedures. According to a recent study women in Texas are already three times more likely to try to end their pregnancy on their own than women in other states.There is nothing pro-life about exploiting an emergency to further a political agenda. There’s nothing pro-life about forcing women to give birth during a pandemic. There’s nothing pro-life women having to put themselves in danger to get the help they need, and the services the constitution is supposed to protect. But, as has always been clear, anti-abortion fanatics don’t care about “life”, they care about control.The Texas abortion ban is supposed to be temporary. But our civil liberties are most fragile during times of fear and crisis; rights that are lost are not easily won back. It’s not just our physical health that we need to worry about during this pandemic; it’s the health of our democracy. As is already apparent, a small minority of zealots will do everything they can to use this crisis to eradicate the right to an abortion in America. Don’t nag your husband during the lockdown, ladiesThe Malaysian government recently put out a series of online posters advising the country’s women not to nag their husbands during the coronavirus lockdown. Posters also urged women not to be “sarcastic” and to dress up and wear makeup. This advice did not go down very well and the government has now apologized. Peru and Panama institute sex-based curfew to combat coronavirus spreadIn Panama, women are allowed to leave home to buy necessities on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Men can go out on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Nobody can leave the house on Sunday. Similar sex-based measures are in place in Peru. It’s like a dystopic Craig David song.It’s also a nightmare for trans people: police in Panama have already detained a transgender woman for being out on the wrong day. 31 March was International Day of Transgender VisibilityIdaho celebrated it by pushing through two anti-transgender bills. The state’s Republican governor approved discriminatory legislation that prohibits transgender people from changing the sex on their birth certificate and banned transgender girls and women from competing in female sports. Australia offers free childcare during coronavirus crisisThe Australian government is promoting this plan as a way to keep childcare centers open during the crisis. While free childcare sounds brilliant, Eva Cox unpicks the problems with the program in the Guardian. “Rather than using the crisis as the means to reform the problematic high-fee structures and maldistribution of childcare services – let alone needed reforms to very low pay rates – good PR appears to be the aim.” Pregnant women, listen up!“File for the [US government] stimulus for your fetus,” a viral tweet this week advised. “You either get paid, or Republicans will have to admit a fetus isn’t a child.” Gender reveal party causes large fire in FloridaPlease, please, please can the awful gender reveal party craze end? Not only is it regressive and weird, it’s killed a bunch of people. ‘During a crisis, a cocktail hour can be almost any hour’Wise words from Ina Garten, who delighted the internet by posting an Instagram video (at 10am) of her making an enormous quarantine cocktail. Cheers everyone! The week in potato-archyVia the magic of filters, a woman accidentally turned herself into a potato during a work video meeting and couldn’t un-spud herself. “I was so confused as to why I was a potato,” she said. “Of all the things I could be, why a potato?”

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 09:00:01 -0400
  • Jordan becomes latest Mideast country to deploy drones in virus response news

    Jordan on Sunday started to deploy drones to fight the coronavirus pandemic, joining a host of Middle East countries using the technology to enforce curfews, deliver public health announcements and even monitor people's temperatures. Jordan has declared five deaths and 323 cases of COVID-19 and says it has arrested at least 1,600 people for violating a nationwide curfew in force since last month. "The armed forces and security services will ensure the curfew is being respected by using modern technology such as drones and surveillance cameras," Minister of State for Information, Amjad al-Adayleh, told a press briefing late Saturday.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 11:57:34 -0400
  • Coronavirus: Trump says teenage son Barron ‘isn’t as happy as he could be’ as quarantine frustrations hit White House news

    Donald Trump offered a rare personal insight into the life of his 14-year-old son Barron Trump and how he is faring in quarantine during his latest White House briefing on the coronavirus outbreak.The president had tweeted a message of encouragement to the nation’s frustrated Little League baseball players earlier in the day, telling them to “Hang in there!”

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 03:44:12 -0400
  • Leaked memo: Amazon is now recommending the workers sorting and moving your online orders wear face masks, but will only have 'limited' quantities news

    Amazon employs some 400,000 warehouse workers across 175-plus facilities. Workers at more than 50 warehouses have tested positive for the coronavirus.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 21:44:58 -0400
  • Americans play the 'waiting game' after last passenger plane from Moscow canceled news

    "If I don't get a flight soon, then I probably won't see my dad ever again," said Grace Mitchell.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 12:23:00 -0400
  • Trump: U.S. approaching period ‘that is going to be very horrendous’ news

    President Trump on Saturday said that the United States is approaching a time that will be “very horrendous” for the nation amid the growing coronavirus outbreak across the country.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 22:38:08 -0400
  • From 271 to 13: American suspends most NYC flights amid coronavirus crisis; demand 'evaporating' news

    American, a big player in New York, usually operates more nearly 300 daily flights from New York's three major airports.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 22:36:26 -0400
  • Japan to boost Avigan drug stockpile as part of coronavirus stimulus news

    Japan is considering increasing the stockpile of Fujifilm Holding Corp's Avigan anti-flu drug during this fiscal year so it can be used to treat 2 million people, according to a planning document seen by Reuters. Local media reported on Sunday that Japan was hoping to triple the production of the drug from current levels, which is enough to treat 700,000 people if used by coronavirus patients. Avigan, also known as Favipiravir, is manufactured by a subsidiary of Fujifilm, which has a healthcare arm although it is better known for its cameras.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 22:31:44 -0400
  • Women in ICE custody plead for release amid pandemic news

    Immigrant women detained in rural Louisiana feel powerless to shield themselves from the rapidly-spreading coronavirus. They're asking the U.S. not to forget about them.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 00:59:48 -0400
  • Surgeon General Adams Warns of 'Saddest Week of Most Americans' Lives' as COVID-19 Pandemic Spreads news

    Adams' characterization of the threat has changed markedly since the beginning of the outbreak

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 14:31:45 -0400
  • Italy's virus deaths plunge to lowest since March 19 news

    Italian officials said Sunday they may soon have to consider easing restrictions after seeing the daily coronavirus death toll plunge to its lowest in over two weeks. The 525 official COVID-19 fatalities reported by the civil protection service were the Mediterranean country's lowest since 427 deaths were registered on March 19. "The curve has started its descent and the number of deaths has started to drop," Italy's ISS national health institute director Silvio Brusaferro told reporters.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 15:29:41 -0400
  • Sideshow Don: Trump pursues a non-virus agenda news

    Even as he struggles to beat back a global pandemic, the president is going after other targets.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 19:58:38 -0400
  • Do social distancing better, White House doctor tells Americans news

    Dr. Deborah Birx, the coordinator of the White House task force on the coronavirus, had a message for Americans that she shared on Thursday: Do better at social distancing. President Trump disagreed.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 16:55:50 -0400
  • An at-home fingerprick blood test may help detect your exposure to coronavirus news

    If approved, the blood test could show if your immune system has developed coronavirus antibodies. But a positive result isn't a license to return to work.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 07:42:00 -0400
  • Flight attendants are still working during coronavirus lockdowns and they worry that they're spreading the virus news

    Some flight attendants are worried that they may be spreading coronavirus because of travel and lack of personal protective equipment.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 14:10:07 -0400
  • No Probe on Trump’s Early Virus Response, House Democrat Says news

    (Bloomberg) -- House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn said it’s unlikely a congressional panel overseeing coronavirus relief will investigate the Trump administration’s initial response to the pandemic that’s claimed thousands of American lives.“This committee will be forward-looking,” Clyburn told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.” “We’re not going to be looking back on what the president may or may not have done back before this crisis hit. The crisis is with us.”The South Carolina lawmaker said the panel will instead be looking at how $2 trillion stimulus package to address the economic fallout of the spread of Covid-19 is administered.“The American people are now out of work, millions of them out of work,” he said. “The question is whether or not the money that’s appropriated will go to support them and their families, or whether or not this money will end up in the pockets of a few profiteers.”Clyburn’s remarks arrive as some Democratic governors criticize the Trump administration for what they say is a failure to provide adequate supplies or centralized policies to the states to address the crisis, despite having weeks or months of lead time.Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker said during a Sunday news conference that the federal government knew about the seriousness of the virus as early as January but failed to act quickly enough.“The idea that the United States federal government did nearly nothing for quite a long time is now being visited upon us,” Pritzker said. “If action had been taken earlier a lot fewer lives would be lost.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 17:17:15 -0400
  • Number of coronavirus intensive care patients in Italy drops for first time news

    Italy reported its lowest daily rise in COVID-19 deaths for nearly two weeks on Saturday and said the number of patients in intensive care had fallen for the first time. The Civil Protection department reported 681 deaths, bringing the total to 15,632 since the outbreak of the new coronavirus epidemic in northern Italy on Feb. 21. The total number of confirmed cases rose to 124,632 from 119,827 reported on Friday but for the first time, the number of patients in badly stretched intensive care units fell, with 3,994 patients being treated, down 74 from 4,068 on Friday.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 12:31:50 -0400
  • Imprisoned Chinese rights lawyer released, his wife says news

    Wang Quanzhang, a well-known Chinese rights lawyer, was released from prison Sunday after being held for more than four years, his wife said. It was unclear whether he would be allowed to return to Beijing, where he practiced and lived with his wife and young son. Police took him to his house in his hometown of Jinan in eastern China, his wife said in a tweet on her verified Twitter account.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 03:59:07 -0400
  • 'We're gonna die': migrants in US jail beg for deportation due to Covid-19 exposure news

    Ice detainees isolated after one had Covid-19 symptoms tell the Guardian that cries for help and protection have gone ignored * Coronavirus – latest US updates * Coronavirus – latest global updates * See all our coronavirus coverageDetainees in a US immigration jail are begging to be released after potential Covid-19 exposure, saying the conditions are so brutal that they would rather suffer deportation than remain locked up.Three men incarcerated at the Winn correctional center in a remote part of Louisiana told the Guardian that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) has isolated 44 of them together after they were possibly exposed to coronavirus. Some of the detainees are so desperate to leave that they are seeking voluntary deportation. They say their cries for masks, hand sanitizer, gloves and cleaning supplies have gone ignored, including for elderly detainees and those with asthma.In a series of phone calls, the men described a nightmare ordeal over the last two weeks, citing rampant mistreatment and a terrifying lack of information from Ice after they learned they were under some kind of quarantine. They also said that seven of their fellow detainees were deported on a flight to Colombia this week, four days into a 14-day quarantine period, which would appear to violate basic standards of coronavirus containment.Their firsthand accounts escalate concerns that human rights lawyers have been raising for weeks, that Ice jails could become death traps during the pandemic and that the only way to save lives and slow the spread is to release people en masse.“People are writing to the judge that they want to be deported as soon as possible. They don’t want to continue fighting,” said a detainee from El Salvador in his 30s, who declined to give his name. He said he was trying to self-deport and was also helping an asylum seeker seek deportation. “He told me, ‘I’d prefer to go home instead of being in this jail.’ … Ice has to release all the people, immediately.”One of the detainees speaking out and advocating for the release of immigrant prisoners is Dr Sirous Asgari, an Iranian scientist who was exonerated in a US trial last year but continues to face detention. The 59-year-old professor shared his story with the Guardian last week, prompting Iran’s foreign minister to call for his release.The men were first detained at the Alexandria staging facility (ASF) in Louisiana, where Asgari said Ice was continuing to bring in new detainees from around the country in cramped quarters where they were denied masks and basic supplies to protect themselves.Then on 26 March, ASF staff put up a sign outside the pod where they slept, which said the room was under “medical observation” due to the possibility of exposure, saying the risk was “high”, Asgari recounted this week. He heard that a detainee had a fever. But Ice, he alleged, gave the detainees no information and declined to tell them whether it was Covid-19.“Everybody got panicked,” he said, describing a chaotic scene of the detainees yelling for help and information. “We had two elderly people in their 70s, younger people with respiratory problems. One guy is crying, saying, ‘My life is in danger, we have been exposed.’ People were screaming, ‘Give us masks!’ … ‘We’re gonna die!’”One officer suggested there was nothing to worry about, but then staff kept the pod completely isolated from other detainees, suggesting they were under quarantine, Asgari said. Despite what seemed to be a strict quarantine, seven of them were deported to Colombia a few days later, he said.Roughly 30 men who remained behind were then taken to Winn, but were still given no information, the detainees said. But once they had medical visits, he said they confirmed their fears after asking the nurse to look at their records, which all said “possible exposure to Covid-19” and listed as 8 April as a “release date” which would be the end of a 14-day quarantine period. The men joined a dozen other detainees in that facility who were also suspected of having exposure, Asgari said.Bryan Cox, an Ice spokesman, declined to respond to many of their specific claims, but said no detainee has tested positive for Covid-19 at ASF. He did not answer questions about whether the men were given tests or whether there was a direct exposure or quarantine. He said Ice groups detainees in “medical cohorts”, meaning separating potential Covid-19 patients from others, but said that a “cohort for potential exposure does not mean a person has been exposed”.He said the men were spreading “unsubstantiated rumor and false allegations”, but did not offer specifics.“We are just a number to them. They don’t care,” said a detainee in his 30s who is facing deportation to Guatemala, and was also moved from ASF to Winn alongside Asgari. “I’m really afraid … They put you in jail with all these people and you don’t know where they’ve come from. It doesn’t make any sense.”This detainee said he had lived in the US for more than a decade and that he was arrested in New York in mid-March as Ice continued its raids and arrests amid the worsening pandemic. He said he has little information about his case and is fighting to get out: “I’m trying to do something, but I can’t. I haven’t seen a judge, nothing. They are just moving me around.” ‘Disgusting’ conditions and silence from IceThe men said the conditions at Winn were appalling. The detainees are responsible for all cleaning, and there is a single shower and only two toilets for all 44 of them to share. They are also sleeping on beds roughly two feet apart from each other, and the humidity when they first arrived left the sheets wet and beds rusted, they alleged.“When we got inside, everyone was absolutely shocked at the living conditions,” said Asgari, who has a history of respiratory problems and is at risk of death. “It’s frustrating, disgusting and humiliating. We get outside for one hour a day. That’s the only good thing.”By Friday, a majority of the detainees were suffering from some kind of cold, according to Asgari, who said he now has a bad cough and fears it will infect his lungs. They don’t have fevers, and he said he hopes it’s not coronavirus.The man from El Salvador said the staff at Winn were taking their temperatures daily, but otherwise doing little else related to Covid-19 prevention. He said Ice should consider releasing them in the US for their own safety, noting that he didn’t know the status of the outbreak in El Salvador and whether it would be dangerous to return. But ultimately, he said he was desperate to get out, fearing staff could bring the virus to the facility or that he could be moved again and exposed to hundreds more detainees in other jails.One Ice officer told him he could submit a formal request and get a reply in seven or eight days, he said: “I want to know what is happening with us. They don’t answer, nothing.”On Friday, the man from El Salvador was deported, according to Asgari.> People are seeking asylum and they are saying, ‘Just send me back.’ That speaks to the horrific conditions> > Mehrnoush YazdanyarAsgari has also been trying to self-deport to Iran, where there is a massive Covid-19 outbreak.“They are asking to be sent anywhere but there,” said Mehrnoush Yazdanyar, an attorney who has talked to multiple Winn detainees and is helping Asgari’s family. “People are seeking asylum and they are saying, ‘Just send me back.’ That speaks to the horrific conditions.”Cox, the Ice spokesman, said all detainees are screened upon arrival to facilities and that Ice conducts Covid-19 testing in accordance with US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines. He said Ice provides soap and “other appropriate cleaning supplies” and “necessary and appropriate medical care” to detainees.Advocates have raised similar complaints about Ice conditions across the country. Karlyn Kurichety, an attorney with immigrant rights group Al Otro Lado, said that at California’s largest Ice jail, detainees lack basic sanitation supplies and that Ice has placed some detainees in quarantine without telling them why.“We’re concerned there’s going to be a massive outbreak in one of these facilities, and literally thousands of people could die,” she said.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 06:00:02 -0400
  • Vanuatu braces as monster storm strengthens in Pacific news

    A deadly cyclone bearing down on the Pacific nation of Vanuatu has intensified into a Category Five super storm, generating destructive winds and "phenomenal" seas, forecasters said Monday. Tropical cyclone Harold, which claimed 27 lives when it swept through the Solomon Islands last week, strengthened overnight Sunday as it moved east, Vanuatu's meteorology service said. Harold is forecast to pass north of the capital Port Vila early Tuesday.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 18:19:19 -0400
  • New York governor sees 'return to normalcy' with rapid coronavirus testing news

    Cuomo, whose state is the epicenter of the outbreak in the United States, said New York was part of an effort to develop a program that would identify people who are both negative and not in a vulnerable category, allowing them to go back to work. "That is going to be the answer, I believe."

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 12:54:25 -0400
  • Fact check: Did the Obama administration deplete the federal stockpile of N95 masks? news

    During the presidency of Barack Obama, the national stockpile was seriously taxed as the administration addressed multiple crises over eight years.

    Sat, 04 Apr 2020 15:31:27 -0400
  • 1st federal inmate to die of coronavirus wrote heartbreaking letter to judge news

    Patrick Jones "spent the last 12 years contesting a sentence that ultimately killed him," one of his former lawyers said.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 08:35:00 -0400
  • Aid workers seek to avoid coronavirus outbreak at Matamoros migrant camp news

    Asylum-seekers camp near the border in crowded conditions, waiting indefinitely as the U.S. puts their cases on hold. Health workers fear an outbreak.

    Sun, 05 Apr 2020 07:00:04 -0400
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