America’s leading infectious disease representative has raised concerns about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines being developed by China and Russia as the world seeks answers to a pandemic that the WHO has warned will last for decades .
Six months after the World Health Organization declared a global emergency, the novel corona virus has killed at least 679,000 people and infected at least 17.9 million, according to an AFP record.
When countries across Western Europe announced new closures and reported historic economic downturns, the UN health agency said the pandemic was a “once in a century” crisis and its effects would be felt for decades.
Several Chinese companies are at the forefront of the race to develop immunity to the disease, and Russia has set a date to launch its own vaccine in September.
However, US infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said his country is unlikely to use a vaccine developed in either country, where regulatory systems are far more opaque than in the West.
“I hope the Chinese and Russians will actually test the vaccine before giving the vaccine to anyone,” he said at a US Congress hearing on Friday.
“The claim that having a vaccine ready for distribution before testing is problematic at best in my opinion.”
As part of its own Operation Warp Speed, the US government will pay pharmaceutical giants Sanofi and GSK up to $ 2.1 billion to develop a COVID-19 vaccine.
Areas in East Asia where the early wave of coronavirus has been successfully tackled are now facing worrying new spikes.
Japan’s Okinawa declared a state of emergency after a record jump in island cases – many related to U.S. forces stationed there – while Hong Kong opened a new makeshift hospital to accommodate COVID-19 patients.
The financial center had been a figurehead for the fight against coronavirus, and local transmissions almost ended in early summer.
But since July, daily cases have risen to record highs, partly due to tens of thousands of people being exempt from mandatory quarantine imposed on most comers.
France, Spain, Portugal and Italy saw huge contractions in their economies in the April-June quarter, while gross domestic product in Europe overall fell 12.1 percent.
As a sign that European governments had to compromise, Britain placed new locks on millions of households in Northern England on Friday.
For large Muslim populations in these areas, the ban was painfully laid down on the eve of the Eid-al-Adha festival.
In the United States, the world‘s largest economy and the hardest hit nation, unemployed Americans were preparing to end additional unemployment benefits after Congress failed to agree on expanding benefits.
It was only a day after the US saw a 9.5 percent drop in GDP in the second quarter compared to the same period last year, the worst it had ever seen.
Sect leader arrested
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro said that almost everyone will get the new corona virus on Friday. He asked the Brazilians to “face this” and said there was nothing to fear.
His comments came when the death toll in Brazil was 100,000 and Latin America’s largest airline LATAM said it was firing at least 2,700 crew members because of the corona virus.
In South Korea, the senior leader of a secret sect was arrested in the center of the country’s early coronavirus outbreak on Saturday for allegedly interfering with government efforts to curb the epidemic.
People associated with Lee Man-hees Shincheonji Church of Jesus were responsible for more than half of the southern coronavirus cases in February and March when the country experienced one of the worst early outbreaks in the world.
The south has largely normalized since then and apparently brought the outbreak under control with an extensive “Trace, Test and Treat” program.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and published from a syndicated feed.)