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LIVE: Middle East governments threaten legal action against violators of coronavirus-related regulations


DUBAI: As countries continue to report rising numbers of the COVID-19 on a daily basis, more governments are setting up increasingly strict measures to control the virus’ spread.

Malls closed in the UAE, Saudi Arabia’s curfew ran its second night and in India new rules are expected after the government has come under fire for not doing enough.

Currently, the global number of cases has topped 400,000, with over 105,000 recoveries and more than 18,900 deaths.

Wednesday, March 25 (All times in GMT)

07:18 – Libya has reported its first case of the novel coronavirus, a particular source of concern in the North African country where civil war has badly degraded the public health care system. READ THE STORY

07:12 – Up to 158,000 people have signed up in the UK to the National Health Service volunteer scheme, ITV has reported.

07:05 – Coronavirus cases in Israel have risen to 2,030, officials said.

06:44 – The world’s largest democracy went under the world’s biggest lockdown Wednesday, with India’s 1.3 billion people ordered to stay home in a bid to stop the coronavirus pandemic.
India’s unprecedented move was aimed at keeping the virus from spreading and overwhelming its fragile health care system as it has done in parts of Europe, where infections were still surging.

06:26 – South Africa’s number of coronavirus cases has risen to 709, from 554 on Tuesday, health minister Zweli Mkhize said on Wednesday. “We are now at 709 cases,” he said, speaking on local news channel SABC.

06:22 – The White House and Senate leaders of both parties announced agreement early Wednesday on unprecedented emergency legislation to rush sweeping aid to businesses, workers and a health care system slammed by the coronavirus pandemic.
The urgently needed pandemic response measure is the largest economic rescue measure in history and is intended as a weeks- or months-long patch for an economy spiraling into recession and a nation facing a potentially ghastly toll.

06:12 – Pakistan halted all domestic passenger flights to stop the spread of the new coronavirus after reporting nearly 1,000 cases the country, just as Libya became the latest at-risk Middle East nation to report its first infection. READ THE STORY


Pakistani students wear protective facemasks as they come out upon their arrival from China at the Islamabad International Airport on February 3, 2020. (AFP)

06:11 – Taiwan’s government announced 19 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, all imported, bringing the total number of infected people on the island to 235. Taiwan also reported one extra case late on Tuesday, in addition to the 20 new cases it announced earlier that same day.

06:04 – Mainland China reported a drop in new confirmed coronavirus cases on Wednesday as imported infections fell and no locally transmitted infections were reported, including in central Hubei province, the epicentre of the outbreak in China. China is ramping up quarantine and screening rules for all international arrivals due to the risks from imported cases.

06:02 – The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany rose to 31,554, and deaths to 149.

05:40 – Malaysia’s prime minister on Wednesday extended a two-week virtual lockdown to April 14 as coronavirus cases continue to rise in the country, which has the highest number of infections in Southeast Asia.

Muhyiddin Yassin said the country had 172 new coronavirus cases as of Wednesday noon, taking the total to 1796, with 17 deaths. The original restrictions were until March 31.

05:30 – The Kuwaiti minister of health said four people with coronavirus have recovered, the total recoveries now at 43.

04:14 – Thailand has recorded 107 new coronavirus cases, bringing total to 934, a health official said on Wednesday.
The new cases consist of 27 patients linked to previous cases, 13 new cases including imported ones, and 67 people who tested positive and are awaiting investigation into how they contracted the disease, Taweesin Wisanuyothin, a Public Health Ministry spokesman said. Thailand has recorded four death since the outbreak while 70 patients have recovered and gone home. 860 patients are still being treated in hospitals.


People wear face masks as preventive measure against the coronavirus as they queue to buy rice in Thailand’s southern province of Narathiwat on March 25, 2020. (AFP)

02:44 – The death toll from coronavirus in Peru hit 7 after a 38-year-old man died after he contracted the disease while on a trip to Canada, the country’s Ministry of Health said.
The ministry said the man, who recently returned to Peru, died after being admitted to a Lima hospital on Monday for respiratory failure. He was found to be suffering from atypical pneumonia, it added.
Peru had confirmed 416 cases of the virus as of Tuesday. 

02:25 – Walmart Inc’s Flipkart has suspended services, a notice on the Indian e-commerce firm’s website said on Wednesday, as India began a 21-day lockdown to fight the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
Flipkart’s move came after rival Amazon India said on Tuesday it will halt orders for non-essential products in India to prioritize customers’ critical needs, and focus on supplying essentials.

Tuesday, March 24 (All times in GMT)

18:32 – Jordan confirmed 26 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total to 153.

Out of the new cases, 12 attended a wedding, 3 came from the UK, 9 were in contact with other cases, one Spanish national and one American.

17:33 – Algeria reported 34 new coronavirus cases and two deaths, increasing tolls to 264 patients and 19 deaths.

15:36 – The UAE’s Ministry of Health and Prevention recorded 50 new coronavirus cases and four recoveries. The country’s total infected to 248 and 45 recovered.



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