Tag Archives: general news

Germany surpasses 2 million coronavirus cases, death toll goes up | Instant News

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany surpassed 2 million coronavirus infections and the death toll from the pandemic reached nearly 45,000, experts said on Friday, a day after Chancellor Angela Merkel demanded “very swift action” to curb the deadly virus.

Medical staff line up to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at the Havelhoehe community hospital in Berlin, Germany, January 14, 2021. REUTERS / Fabrizio Bensch

Europe’s largest economy and most populous nation is managing the pandemic better than its neighbors last spring. But there has been a sharp increase in cases and deaths recently and daily per capita deaths have frequently exceeded US figures since mid-December.

Worried about high infection rates and bracing for the spread of a more contagious variant of the virus, Merkel told top officials from her party on Thursday that she wanted “very swift action”.

Germany’s coronavirus cases increased by 22,368 to 2,000,958, according to the most recent date from the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases. It was the smallest increase in infections on Friday in more than two months. A week ago, the number of new registered cases was nearly 10,000 higher.

The situation in the intensive care unit has also relaxed a little, according to the RKI.

But the high death toll rose by 1,113 to 44,994 on Friday, and concerns over a more contagious variant of the coronavirus fanned fears that existing lockdown measures were failing.

Merkel will next Tuesday hold a meeting with regional leaders originally planned for January 25 to discuss tougher measures to reduce social contact, attendees at the meeting said.

Part of the debate is expected to focus on whether companies should be coerced or incentivized to get more people to work from home. There is also disagreement over whether schools should reopen in February, people close to the talks told Reuters.

Germany is targeting its steps to reduce the number of infections per 100,000 population over seven days to no more than 50.That number is currently around 150.

Limiting the spread of the virus will give authorities time until enough people have been vaccinated against COVID-19 to achieve herd immunity. So far about 1.2% of Germany’s population, or about one million people, have been vaccinated, according to the German health ministry.

Reporting by Kirsti Knolle, Markus Wacket, Andreas Rinke and Sabine Siebold; editing by Maria Sheahan and Mark Heinrich


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Germany’s hard coal imports could fall by a fifth by 2021 – VDKi | Instant News

FRANKFURT, Jan 15 (Reuters) – German hard coal imports in 2021 could fall 18.6% year-on-year to 26.7 million tonnes, according to forecasts of the VDKi lobby group on Friday, citing lower use by steelmakers. in the COVID-19 crisis and price competition with gas and renewable energy in power generation.

The coal importer group also published preliminary data for the past year. It said imports had fallen to 32.8 million tonnes in 2020, a 24% decrease from 2019. (reporting by Vera Eckert; editing by Thomas Seythal)


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New Zealand’s central bank governor apologized after the cyber attack resulted in a serious data breach | Instant News

(Reuters) – The head of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) apologized on Friday after a recent cyber attack caused a serious data breach at the central bank, and brought in independent investigators to review the incident.

FILE PHOTOS: Pedestrians walking near the main entrance of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand which is located in central Wellington, New Zealand, July 3, 2017. REUTERS / David Gray

The breaches were first announced on Sunday and later that week the RBNZ said a file sharing service provided by California-based Accellion was accessed illegally.

The breach comes just months after New Zealand’s exchange operator was targeted in a series of distributed denial of service attacks that flooded its website, preventing trading for several days.

“I have this problem and I am disappointed and sorry,” said Governor Adrian Orr, adding that the ongoing investigation showed the breach was “serious and has significant data implications.”

“Even though a malicious third party has committed such crimes, and we believe the terms of service are inconsistent with our agreement, the Bank has also failed to meet the standards expected by our stakeholders.”

Accellion said in response to media inquiries this week that it had become aware of the vulnerability of its legacy File Transfer Appliance (FTA), a 20-year-old product that specializes in large file transfers, in mid-December.

“Accellion resolves the vulnerability and releases patches within 72 hours to less than 50 affected customers,” he said in a statement sent to Reuters on Tuesday.

The RBNZ said the systems being breached had been secured and shut down, and New Zealand’s financial system remained healthy and open for business.

Dave Parry, Professor of Computer Science at Auckland University of Technology, said the time difference between identifying a problem, creating a patch and communicating it allowed the hackers to take action.

“The hackers are faster,” he said.

Parry said the RBNZ was aware of the risks to its IT infrastructure and could upgrade the 20-year-old FTA software, but that wasn’t a terrible mistake because the system was still functioning.

In addition to the ongoing cyber forensic investigation, the bank also appointed an independent third party to conduct a review of the incident.

Orr said he was unable to provide further details as it could influence investigations and steps being taken to mitigate the abuses.

Reporting by Renju Jose and Praveen Menon; Edited by Christian Schmollinger, Lincoln Feast, and Ana Nicolaci da Costa.


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Airbnb CEO says travel will never go back to what it was before pandemic | Instant News

(Reuters) – Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky predicted on Thursday that travel would change permanently due to the pandemic, with people searching thousands of small towns and spending more time visiting friends and traditional tourism and sightseeing tours to major global destinations would be significantly reduced. by travelers who will travel to smaller communities and travel less for business meetings. Travelers “yearn for what has been taken from them,” Chesky told the Reuters Next conference in an interview with Jonathan Weber, Reuters global technology editor. “They don’t want to see Times Square. What they aspire to do is see their friends and families that they haven’t seen for a long time. The startup was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020 and its activity has fallen by 80% in just over eight weeks. However, as lockdowns eased, more travelers chose to book homes over hotels, helping Airbnb to post a surprise profit for the third quarter. The San Francisco-based company took advantage of growing interest in renting homes away from major cities, with the home rental company going public in a successful IPO in December, its shares having more than doubled when they debuted on the stock market. Airbnb shares rose 10% to an all-time high of $ 187.42 on Thursday WILL NOT FACILITATE VIOLENCE Rental platform has canceled house-sharing bookings in the Washington DC area for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration next Wednesday after law enforcement warned of a Césky recalled the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. and said he didn’t want the platform form makes it easier for people to travel to commit violence in communities. Airbnb made the decision after consulting with local and federal officials and after a number of hosts worried about potential attacks sought to cancel bookings. Hotel chains, including Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc and Marriott International, said they plan to keep existing bookings. For more coverage of the Reut conference ers Next, please click here or here. To watch Reuters Next live, visit here Subrat Patnaik’s report in Bengaluru; Edited by Lisa Shumaker.

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‘My Little Sister’ Review: Her Brother’s Carer | Instant News

The serene magic of “My Little Sister,” the Swiss Oscar entry, is the cumulative effect. There’s nothing spectacular about this film, written and directed by Stéphanie Chuat and Véronique Reymond, other than a view of the Alps and one of the heart-stopping parachutes of the parasailing series. And there is nothing extraordinary about the plot, although the complications of marriage around the edges may, at the hands of less talented filmmakers, have distracted attention from the center of the story about Lisa (Nina Hoss), a famous playwright who suffers from writer’s block, and sister twins. , Sven (Lars Eidinger), a famous actor who is dying of leukemia. Even so, each moment reinforces the essence of drama – the bond of love between two people who leave their mother’s womb within seconds of each other. (For playdates in physical and virtual theaters, go to filmmovement.com/my-little-sister.)

There are geographic complications too. Berlin is where Lisa and Sven grew and made their reputation, and where Sven was hospitalized. But Lisa is tied to Switzerland, where her husband, Martin (Jens Albinus), serves as headmaster of an expensive and grand international school. (The supposed school grand piano Stravinsky used to compose “The Rite of Spring.”) What’s more, Sven needed home care and wasn’t available in Berlin, because his sibling’s birth mother, Kathy (veteran Swiss actress Marthe Keller), was so far away from Florence Nightingale: “I can’t stand to see you squander like this!” she told her son who was very ill. So Sven joins his sister in a postcard-like beauty near Montreux, although the action changes as things change.

Her working condition, as well as her medical condition – Sven is determined to make her final appearance as Hamlet in a Berlin stage production directed by ex-husband Lisa. Complications, as I said, but also opportunities for the two stars to put on a dazzling appearance.

Of the two, Mr. Eidinger is less well known outside of Europe, but he is a revelation in a role without emotional boundaries. Sven is frantic, feverish, lively, bends occasionally, very funny, very intelligent; he claims to memorize every word “Hamlet,” and you believe him.

It’s very tempting to call Ms. Hoss with a known number; she’s always been in high demand and was recently seen as a music teacher in 2019’s “The Audition”. But you never know what she’s going to do, and how strong she does it is a mystery that continues. Many stars are classically prettier, although her beauty, like the gravity of her attitude, deepens with age. One thing he does with a special focus is watching, as well as listening; his watchful presence in a scene intensified the presence of those around him.


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