Covid-19 infections topped 6 million in India, the new epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. The official global death toll neared one million, though experts say the real tally may be almost double that.
South Korea reported the fewest cases in seven weeks as it brings its latest outbreak under control. Australia’s prime minister urged the removal of further curbs after Melbourne eased its curfew, while Thailand moved to extend its emergency rules through October.
The U.K. is preparing to enforce a social lockdown across much of northern Britain and potentially London amid a second wave, the Times of London reported. Any vaccine is unlikely to fully immunize everyone, former U.S. Food and Drug Administration head Scott Gottlieb said.
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Thailand to Extend Emergency Rules: Deputy PM (1 p.m. HK)
Thailand’s Covid-19 task force, which is chaired by Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha, agreed to extend a nationwide state-of-emergency for one more month through Oct. 31, according to Deputy Premier Wissanu Krea-Ngam. The move, which needs Cabinet approval, will be the sixth extension since Thailand’s first order in March.
The task force also approved a special tourism visa that will be effective from Oct. 1, according to Tourism Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn.
India’s Cases Top 6 Million (12:04 p.m. HK)
India’s coronavirus infections crossed the six million mark as the outbreak accelerates through the world’s second-most populous country. Infections rose by more than 80,000 and now stand at 6,074,702, according to data released by the health ministry. Some 95,542 people in India have died from the disease.
India has the world’s second-highest case tally and its underfunded health-care system faces a growing challenge to control the outbreak, which is escalating through the nation’s hinterland and drawing resources away from routine health services.
Philippines Warns Against Complacency (11:47 a.m. HK)
The Philippines cannot be complacent amid the slowdown in the spread of the coronavirus as clusters of infections still remain while critical cases have marginally increased, health authorities said.
Reforms to centralize hospital command and intensify tracking and isolation helped cut back new infections and decongest health facilities this month, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a virtual briefing.
President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to decide on Monday whether to extend or ease quarantine measures, which are due to end on Sept. 30.
Beijing Urges Halt to Some Frozen Food Imports (10:44 a.m. HK)
Beijing’s city government is requiring companies to stop importing frozen food from countries with serious coronavirus outbreaks, according to a statement on the local commerce bureau’s website. The statement didn’t name any nations.
The city’s move is the latest restriction on imports in China. The nation has been investigating imported meat, seafood, packaging and containers as a potential source of Covid-19 since June.
South Korea Sees Fewest Cases in 7 Weeks (8:59 a.m. HK)
South Korea added 50 more coronavirus cases in 24 hours, down from 95 a day earlier and the fewest in seven weeks. The country’s total death toll rose by five to 406. South Korea has been fighting a flare-up in cases that peaked last month at more than 400 in a single day.
G-20 Leaders Summit to Be Held ‘Virtually’ (7:28 a.m. HK)
The G-20 Leaders’ Summit, which had been planned for Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, will now be held “virtually,” according to a statement posted to the G-20 website.
The G-20 summit gathers leaders of the world’s largest country together for a multi-day summit meeting. The agenda this year “will focus on protecting lives and restoring growth, by addressing vulnerabilities uncovered during the pandemic and by laying down the foundations for a better future,” according to the statement.
Morrison Pleads for Lockdown End in Australia Hotspot (7:26 a.m. HK)
The leader of Australia’s second-largest state has announced the end of a nightly curfew in Melbourne sooner than originally expected as the pace of new coronavirus infections in the city slows.
That’s not enough for Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who is urgently seeking to reboot the stalled national economy and is pleading for Victoria state Premier Daniel Andrews to quickly remove more lockdown curbs implemented almost two months ago.
U.K. to Enforce Lockdown in North, Maybe London: Times (7:24 a.m. HK)
U.K. is preparing to enforce a social lockdown across much of northern Britain and potentially London as the country deals with a second wave of coronavirus, the Times of London reported, citing unidentified government officials.
All pubs, restaurants and bars would be ordered shut for two weeks, according to the report. Schools would stay open as well as shops, factories and offices where staff can’t work from home.
Brazil Cases, Deaths Slow (6:55 a.m. HK)
Brazil reported 14,318 cases, after a week in which the nation had the lowest number of infections since June, according to Health Ministry data. Total cases, in the country with the world’s third-highest number of infections, are now 4,732,309. Another 335 people died, for a total 141,741 fatalities.
Utah Reports Worst Week Yet (5:10 p.m. NY)
Utah reported more than 1,000 cases for the fourth consecutive day, ending the state’s worst week since the start of the pandemic, according to state health department data.
New infections in Utah surged to record levels this month amid an outbreak in the Midwest and Mountain regions, reaching a peak of 1,411 new cases on Thursday.
The state reported a cumulative 70,615 cases and 453 deaths on Sunday.
Lesotho to Open Border With South Africa (4:25 p.m. NY)
Lesotho will reopen the border with South Africa on Thursday for business people, students, workers and those with medical appointments, Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro said.
People entering the country will be screened for Covid-19 on arrival and those traveling to South Africa will be given certificates, but will have to return within seven days. Majoro said in a broadcast speech on Sunday. Schools, tourism and entertainment will also be allowed to reopen.
South Africa plans to reopen its international borders the same day, Oct. 1.
N.Y.C. Renews Alert on Parts of Brooklyn, Queens (3:45 p.m. NY)
New York City health officials said they’re alarmed at a continuing spike in Covid-19 virus transmission in sections of south Brooklyn and Queens with large Orthodox Jewish communities, on the eve of the Yom Kippur holiday.
Seven of the eight neighborhoods saw increases from the previous report on Saturday, based on preliminary data, the city health department said in a statement.
Mask-wearing compliance in the neighborhoods has been much lower than elsewhere in the city and cases have outpaced the citywide average “at an alarming rate” — more than threefold — over the past 14 days, according to the department.
Vaccine Likely to be ‘Partially Protective’: Gottlieb (3 p.m. NY)
Coronavirus vaccines now in development are likely to be “partially protective” but won’t prevent everyone who’s inoculated from becoming infected, said Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“The expectation is that this vaccine is going to be partially protective, a lot like the flu vaccine, where for certain people it will provide full immunity, but for other people it’s not going to provide as much protection,” Gottlieb said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
NYC Principals Declare No-Confidence (2:10 p.m. NY)
The union representing New York City’s school administrators called upon the state to take over the largest U.S. city education system days before it is scheduled to reopen with part-time in-school instruction, saying that Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza have failed to ensure appropriate staffing and safe buildings during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Council of School Supervisors & Administrations, representing more than 6,400 school managers, declared a unanimous vote of “no confidence” in the city’s education leadership Sunday, and said de Blasio and Carranza should cede authority to the state to run the system of 1.1 million students and 75,000 teachers.
The mayor’s office and Department of Education spokeswoman Miranda Barbot didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. A hybrid system of in-person and at-home Internet-based instruction is slated to begin for elementary school students Tuesday, with middle and high schools starting Thursday.
Ireland Cases Rise (2:05 p.m. NY)
Ireland recorded 43O new infections on Sunday, the most in five months, with Dublin accounting for around half the cases. The government has reintroduced restrictions in the Irish capital, as well as in a region along the border, to try and curb the spread of the virus.
France Cases Slow (1:59 p.m. NY)
France reported a third daily decline in new cases, falling to 11,123 on Sunday from 14,412 on Saturday. The seven-day average remained above 12,000 for the third day. France reported 27 additional deaths, taking the total to 31,727.
Myanmar Tightens Restrictions (12:40 p.m. NY)
Myanmar has seen a spike in cases this month, prompting the government to order the construction of treatment and quarantine centers in Yangon and Mandalay.
Some 743 new Covid-19 cases were confirmed on Sunday, boosting the Southeast Asian nation’s total to 10,734, the Ministry of Health and Sports said. Fatalities increased by 28 to 226. All but six of the deaths were reported this month.
The government on Monday will further tighten curbs to minimize the movement of people in Yangon Region from one township to another.
Florida Surpasses 700,000 Cases; Deaths Drop (12:11 a.m. NY)
Florida reported 700,564 cases, rising 0.3% compared with an average 0.4% daily increase over the previous seven days. Deaths among residents fell to 7, the lowest since mid-June, according to data from Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg. Total fatalities are 14,032.
On Friday, Governor Ron DeSantis lifted capacity restrictions on restaurants and other businesses. He vowed not to return to closures to curb the state’s easing outbreak.
New York Drops Below 1,000 Cases (11:40 a.m. NY)
New York reported 866 cases, dipping back below the 1,000-case threshold crossed on Saturday amid worries about rising clusters in New York City. The state, the early center of the nation’s Covid-19 outbreak, had not reported that many cases since June.
The 0.2% rise was equal to the average daily increase of the previous seven days. The percentage of positive tests was more than 1% for the second consecutive day. Another six deaths were reported.
Italy Cases Slow (11:27 a.m. NY)
Italy reported 1,766 new cases on Sunday, down from 1,869 on Saturday, with 87,714 daily tests. The country reported 17 deaths, the same as Saturday. Patients in intensive care units rose to 254, from 247 a day earlier. Total cases reported since February increased to 309,870.
U.K. Adds More Than 5,600 Cases (11:23 a.m. NY)
Infections in the U.K. increased by 5,693 after rising by more than 6,000 for the previous four days. Reporting has lagged on the weekends, however. Another 17 people died within 28 days of testing positive. More than 10 million people have downloaded the National Health Service’s Covid-19 tracking app since Thursday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Twitter.
Spanish Minister Slams Madrid Officials (8:55 a.m. NY)
Health Minister Salvador Illa, of the Socialist-led Spanish government, wants Madrid’s regional administration to take tougher steps to rein in Covid-19 cases. “I have called on them to review the announced measures and follow the recommendations of scientists and health experts,” Illa said on Twitter Sunday. While Illa wants authorities to lock down the entire capital, Madrid’s People’s Party administration has taken a partial approach by restricting movement in areas with the highest infection rates.
French Adamant Against Lockdown (8:05 a.m. NY)
French Health Minister Olivier Veran rejected the idea of a preemptive, three-week lockdown to enable people to spend Christmas together.
“We don’t want to bring the economic, social, cultural, sports and family life of the French people to a complete standstill,” he said on LCI television. “That’s why we take decisions that are adapted to the seriousness of the moment, region by region.”
Few spectators sit inside Court Philippe Chatrier during the Men’s Singles first round match at the 2020 French Open on Sept. 27.
Photographer: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
He said the government still aims for people be able to spend the end-of-year holidays with their families.
No Letup in U.S. Cases (8:00 a.m. NY)
U.S. virus cases increased by 45,444 on Saturday to 7.08 million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg. The 0.7% rise was in line with the average daily increase over the previous seven days. An additional 740 deaths nationwide were reported on the day, matching the average increase over the previous week.
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