Tag Archives: Covid-19

Taipei Rejects Beijing Vaccine Diplomacy Intended to Isolate the Island State | Instant News

Taiwan said on April 7 that countries are helping by supplying COVID-19 a vaccine for its diplomatic allies that helped prevent the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) from attacking the island nation; Taiwan says Beijing is trying to use the pandemic to force the island nation’s allies to break away in exchange for a vaccine.

Paraguay, Taiwan’s only diplomatic ally in South America, said on March 22 that a Chinese vaccine-producing broker told the country they needed to break away from Taiwan if it were to get a COVID-19 vaccine from China.

Joseph Wu, Taiwan’s foreign minister, the word on Wednesday that India has delivered 100,000 doses of COVAXIN vaccine to Paraguay, and will send another 100,000 doses in the future. Paraguay has a population of 7.2 million people.

“The most important trend is that the Indian government is willing to help, and the United States deciding to help,” said Wu. “I think it will take a lot of pressure off a lot of countries.”

Vaccine diplomacy is not the only method Beijing authorities try to use to isolate Taiwan.

Surangel Whipps, president of Palau’s in the western Pacific, told AFP by video call this week that Beijing asked him to stop recognizing Taiwan, by frequently calling his cell phone when he ran in the 2020 elections. [The phone] going to ring like 16 times, “said Whipps.

Taiwan is a de facto independent country, whereas the CCP claims ownership of the island and applies pressure from all directions.

Since December 2016, Beijing has rejected seven countries from allying with Taiwan: São Tomé and Príncipe, Panama, Dominican Republic, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Solomon Islands and Kiribati.

Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu speaks at a press conference in Taipei, Taiwan on November 22, 2019 (Sam Yeh / AFP via Getty Images)

Against the CCP Vaccine Diplomacy

The Chinese regime has used the COVID-19 vaccine as a means of diplomatic coercion.

On March 19, China’s Agency for International Development Cooperation – a sub-ministerial-level organ under the State Council – announced that China was providing vaccines to 80 countries and three international organizations.

“If you look at the countries that receive the Chinese vaccine, whether it is Brazil or Chile or El Salvador, I think it has a big impact on our diplomatic allies,” Wu said.

Chinese regime claimed that it has no political goals behind it vaccine diplomacy efforts and say that it wants to vaccinate people with a good heart.

However, the vaccine for the Chinese is not enough. Bloomberg reported on April 8 that the CCP wants to vaccinate 560 million people by the end of June, about 40 percent of the population, however, they face a shortage of supply.

Epoch Times photo
A health worker prepares to administer the COVID-19 CoronaVac vaccine, developed by China’s Sinovac company, at the emergency clinic at the Saeng Thip sports ground in Bangkok, Thailand on April 7, 2021. (Mladen Antonov / AFP via Getty Images)

Faced with challenges from Beijing, the United States, India, Japan and Australia decided in their first Quad meeting in March that they would cooperate and deliver up to one billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine across Asia by the end of 2022.

Experts say that larger agenda of informal strategic forums– To forge a democratic union against authoritarian rule – is making itself visible in a partnership for vaccines, and that India has emerged as an alternative to China’s vaccine supply chain.

“They pledge to expand and accelerate the production of a safe, accessible and effective vaccine in India and partner at every stage to ensure that vaccines are delivered across the Indo-Pacific region by 2022,” Joe Chalil, a health care executive and author of the book “Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic: Envisioning a Better World by Changing the Future of Health Care,” told The Epoch Times.

The partnership includes Australia supporting delivery of vaccines to hard-to-reach communities in Southeast Asia, contributing $ 77 million. Australia has committed $ 407 million to supply vaccines and to ensure the safety of ensuring full vaccine coverage to nine Pacific Island countries and Timor-Leste.

“Japan will assist developing country vaccination programs such as vaccine purchases and cold chain support, including through the provision of $ 41 million in grant aid and new soft yen loans, ensuring alignment with and support for COVAX,” the White House said. .

Taiwan has 15 allies currently. They is Marshall Islands, Republic of Nauru, Palau, and Tuvalu in Asia and the Pacific; The Holy See in Europe; Eswatini in Africa; Belize, Republic of Guatemala, Haiti, Republic of Honduras, Nicaragua, Republic of Paraguay, St. Petersburg Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and St. Lucia Vincent & Grenadines in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Venus Upadhayaya contributed to this report.


image source

Germany: Politicians to blame for declining summer vacation bookings News | DW | Instant News

The German tourism industry is showing few signs of recovery with its travel forecast summer to come looks bleak, the sector head said on Sunday.

Orders for 2021 are already down from last year’s bad numbers, Michael Frenzel, president German Tourism Industry Federal Association (BTW), was told World on Sunday.

“For the summer,” Frenzel began, “orders were 76% below the figure for the same period last year in terms of turnover.”

Indeed, in the spring, cancellations have even started to exceed bookings, according to BTW.

However, there may be a flash of light at the end of the tunnel, with a burst of optimism that the third quarter might provide late summer sunshine, both for travelers and the industry itself.

“The majority of people are betting on a late trip, in the fall,” the tourism chief continued. “You can see that from the fact that the drop in bookings for this period was lower than in the previous summer months.”

Stop the ‘stigmatizing’ journey

The BTW leadership also advised members of the German parliament, if the industry wants to survive. He said they “had to stop “stigmatization” around the concept of traveling.

His message follows complaints from lawmakers after Germany reopened travel to Spain’s Balearic islands last month because of the low incidence rate of Covid-19.

Concern is rising that foreign tourism hotspots could trigger further waves of the pandemic.

Germany travel bookings for the summer of 2021 are down 76% compared to last year

Frenzel also believes in the idea of ​​a vaccine passport, giving certificates to those who have received the jab dose of the coronavirus, let them travel. “This is not a privilege, but a basic right,” he concluded.

However, the vaccine passport idea looks set to fail, despite positive voices coming out of Brussels as recently as last month.

On March 28, European Union Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton expressed optimism that Europe will experience a summer tourist season this year similar to 2020, supported by increased COVID-19 inoculation efforts and vaccine certificates.

However, so-called vaccine passports exist met with skepticism by several member states, while the United States owns them overrule them at the federal level.

While many are eager to facilitate travel in any way possible, critics fear travel tickets will separate those who are vaccinated and those who cannot or will not be stabbed.


image source

Coronavirus: 15% of Germans are vaccinated, says RKI | News | DW | Instant News

More than 15% of Germans have now received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for disease control revealed on Sunday.

This figure represents an increase of more than 25% compared to the week before, and is the latest sign that the sluggish beginnings for Germany’s vaccine rollout are over.

RKI data shows that around 12.7 million people have received the vaccine, of which nearly 5 million have received the two required injections.

Several studies have shown that a single dose provides some level of protection against the virus.

General practitioners in Germany joined the country’s launch on Wednesday and now that more vaccines are available, the increase in the number of daily doses administered has increased, peaking at more than 700,000 on Thursday.

Health care on the brink

But there is grimmer news elsewhere, with the German health system “under intense pressure”, according to a government spokesman.

And Gernot Marx, president of the German emergency care association (DIVI), warned on Friday that the situation in the hospital was very worrying.

While the largest university hospital in Germany, Berlin’s Charite, said that “if the number of seriously ill COVID patients exceeds the second wave, we will enter a critical situation.”

Protesters are calling for stricter measures

Meanwhile, hundreds of people took to the streets across Germany on Saturday as part of the “Zero COVID” movement, demanding stricter rules to curb a third wave.

In Bremen and Hanover, more than 200 residents protested, while about 50 people took to the streets of Göttingen. About two dozen people gathered in Berlin to express their frustration and there were about 70 protesters in Dusseldorf, a police spokesman said.

The “Zero COVID” protesters want three weeks off from work and say the office is a “epicenter of infection.” The desire for profit doesn’t have to come before public health, organizers say.

In Hanover, protesters are demanding a pandemic policy based on science, adding the government must put its people above economic interests.

A platform was erected in front of New Town Hall in Hanover

About a dozen demonstrators were seen in Potsdam, calling for more security measures at schools and kindergartens, while they also wanted face-to-face teaching to end.

Potsdam, Germany, is calling for a tougher lockdown

Demonstrators participated in the “No COVID” rally in Potsdam, calling on the government to be more assertive

In Munich, more than 100 people joined the demonstration, expressing frustration similar to that seen elsewhere in Germany.

A protest in Munich called for a tough lockdown

More than 100 people took part in a demonstration in Munich demanding a tough but supportive closure

And in Hamburg, a motorcade protesting the ban was pelted with eggs and tomatoes by about 300 protesters on bicycles, a police spokesman said.

As a result, the motorcade of 109 vehicles had to end prematurely.

With material from the DPA.


image source

Pakistan has recorded 114 deaths from the coronavirus | Instant News

KARACHI, Pakistan

Pakistan recorded 114 deaths from the coronavirus in the past 24 hours, the highest one-day number during the third wave of the pandemic, the Health Ministry said on Sunday.

The South Asian country recorded 103 deaths on April 6, which is a daily record since December.

With the new casualties, mostly reported in northeastern Punjab and the northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkwa, the death toll stood at 15,443.

Pakistan reported 5,050 new infections, bringing the total to 721,018.

Around 631,700, patients have recovered and 73,875 active cases.

The country of more than 200 million people has seen a sharp spike in infections in the past two weeks with about 50,000 cases reported in April alone.

Doctors warn that the third wave may take less time to cross the crests of the first and second waves.

The government has imposed a “broader lockdown” in high-risk areas until April 13, with no movement allowed except for an emergency.

Pakistan is currently vaccinating frontline health care workers and citizens over 50 years old using China’s Sinopharm and CanSino doses.

Private hospitals in major cities have also started inoculating with the Russian Sputnik V vaccine imported by a pharmaceutical company.

The Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news offered to subscribers on the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and is in summary form. Please contact us for subscription options.


image source

Food bank asks 3 districts for COVID-19 | News, Sports, Jobs | Instant News

YOUNGSTOWN – The Mahoning Valley Second Harvest Food Bank approached commissioners in Trumbull, Mahoning and Columbiana counties to ask for COVID-19 relief funds.

This is proactive action: Even though the peak of the pandemic may be past, food banks see an opportunity with COVID-19 relief funds to ensure aid remains available as people continue to ask for food.

At the same time, Second Harvest is using part of the $ 3 million reward to handle aging equipment from partner agencies, as well as providing food and viewing to serve underserved areas, said its executive director, Mike Iberis.

“We are asking for COVID money for our kitchen just for food,” said Iberis. “This gives commissioners the opportunity to invest in kitchens that serve people in their area all year round.”

Last year, for example, the Trumbull County commissioner gave the Second Harvest $ 100,000 of the grant, and every penny remains in Trumbull County, he said.

“We used the money to bring food for travel at the Trumbull County fair, as well as in the Mecca and Yankee Lake communities,” said Iberis.


Throughout 2020, more than 100 member institutions of the food bank asked if any monetary assistance was coming. Now, Second Harvest is turning to regional leadership.

A list of all kitchens in each district was provided to the commissioners, with a breakdown of how much food was distributed, along with requests.

Last year, Second Harvest experienced an increase in food distribution by 40 percent. Although they have now declined, the results are still 25 percent above pre-pandemic levels, Iberis said. So far this year, 3.5 million pounds of food have been distributed.

Last year, £ 15 million was distributed, and 11 million in 2019, which was a record year.

Mahoning County saw the most food being distributed from 53 kitchens and one diner, with 6,979,000 pounds of food. Nearly 300,000 requests for food were made.

Trumbull County, with 37 kitchens and three dining establishments, distributed 4,953,000 pounds of food, and received 299,146 requests.

Columbiana County has 3,730,000 pounds of food distributed across its 24 pantries, with 126,604 requests.


In December, Second Harvest received $ 3 million from MacKenzie Scott, former wife of Amazon Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos.

Part of the reward – about 25 percent – goes to overcoming aging equipment. The agency filed for infrastructure needs in the first quarter, Iberis said. “They work with outdated equipment.”

Currently, Second Harvest is in the process of ordering equipment such as coolers, freezers and pallet jacks, for example.

The purchases will be made through local businesses in the three counties, too, Iberis said.

The rest of the money will be used for food and program development.

“Our goal is to ensure that money is used for a good cause … To accommodate our existing purpose and that is to feed people,” said Iberis.

In the third quarter, the food bank will look at underserved areas and if the pantry needs to be added, moves will be made, “as long as it is needed,” Iberis said.


For the work done by the charity, it has recently been in the national spotlight.

Charity Navigator ranks Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley in the top 15 percent of all charities in the country.

“Our transparency and efficiency has allowed us to achieve that,” said Iberis.

The local food bank received a four-star rating, which, in a letter signed by Michael Thatcher, Charity Navigator president and chief executive, “will step up (the organization’s) fundraising and public relations efforts.”

The letter, dated April 1, states that the food bank has received a four-star rating for five consecutive years.

Second Harvest is among 11.5 percent of star-rated charities that have had four stars for at least five consecutive years, Thatcher said by email to the newspaper.

“This adds Second Harvest Foodbank of the Mahoning Valley to a leading group of charities working to address our world’s most pressing challenges,” he said.

The honorable rating will make people “believe their donation will go to a financially and ethically responsible charity when they decide to support” the food bank, Thatcher said.

[email protected]

[email protected]

Today’s news and more in your inbox


image source