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World Coronavirus Dispatch: The baffling surge in Ireland's cases

Malaysia's king declares Covid state of emergency, Taiwan's coronavirus success lures foreigners and other pandemic-related news across the globe

Coronavirus Tests | Coronavirus | Coronavirus Vaccine

Akash Podishetty  |  Hyderabad 

Ireland snow 1
Scientists are stunned that they have never seen an epidemic curve like the one in Ireland

Taiwan’s success lures foreigners

Foreign professionals who visited Taiwan as tourists are now loosking at the possibility of embracing the nation as their home, thanks to the territory's successful handling of and easing of visa norms. Despite global restrictions, there has been a surge in the number of foreigners obtaining Taiwan residency permits and student visas. Further, many journalists are weighing the prospects of living there rather than mainland China to cover the country. Taiwan's freedom of press and business environment are luring the expats including tech-professionals. Strict restrictions across the world meant that school-going class are leaning towards Taiwan to advance their careers. Read here

Let's look at the global statistics

Global infections: 90,907,661

Change Over Yesterday: 612,633

Global deaths: 1,898,655

Nations with most cases: US (22,618,066), India (10,479,179), Brazil (8,131,612), Russia (3,389,733), United Kingdom (3,127,643).

Source: John Hopkins Coronavirus Research Center.

Malaysia's king declares Covid state of emergency

Malaysia's king has accepted the request of the prime minister to declare a state of emergency that suspends parliament and allows the government to pass laws without parliament's nod. The move has been criticised by the opposition, which has been accusing the prime minister of hanging on to power using brutal means. The emergency will remain in force until August 1 or earlier depending on the situation. Treading on a wafer thin majority in parliament, the prime minister Muhyiddin is facing a crisis, with rivals pushing for early elections. Muhyiddin defended the move, saying the emergency "is not an attempt to seize power and is not a military coup." Read here

Running out of adjectives to describe Ireland's rocket surge

In what has been a dramatic rise, Ireland went from one of the lowest coronavirus rates per capita in Europe to one of the highest in the world in just a matter of weeks, baffling scientists and authorities alike. The 'perfect storm' was led by relaxations during the Christmas and the arrival of the new coronavirus variant. Public health officials in Ireland, which has fewer intensive care beds than most European Union countries, are highly concerned about the strain on the health-care system. Scientists are baffled that they have never seen an epidemic curve like this. Read here

Indonesia first to approve Sinovac vaccine outside China

Indonesia approved the vaccine against coronavirus developed by Chinese drugmaker Sinovac, after trials showed that it was safe and had an efficacy rate 65 per cent, and thus becoming the first country outside China to give emergency use nod. The approval comes in the light of findings that place the candidate’s efficacy among the lowest for new coronavirus vaccines. Clinical trial results out of Brazil last week showed the vaccine had an efficacy rate of 78 per cent. Participants experienced only minor side effects like fatigue and fever, according to the head of Indonesia’s drug agency. Read here

WHO Wuhan probe: What the scientists will and won't do?

After months of negotiations, China has finally agreed to allow the team of WHO experts to probe the origins of the coronavirus, that has killed millions and destroyed the global economy. When the scientists touch down in China on Jan 16, they have clear intentions of what they are looking for and what they won't wade into. The probe will seek to find out how the virus transmitted from a bat to humans and if there was any intermediary host. The scientists won't go into China with pre-conceived notions of putting the blame on the country for spreading the virus. Read here

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First Published: Tue, January 12 2021. 14:52 IST