The country where the word “coronavirus” is illegal
No word, no problem. The word "coronavirus" can no longer be used by the media in Turkmenistan, and it has also been removed from health information leaflets. This was reported on March 31 by "Reporters Without Borders".
Turkmenistan is a distinctive country, and the attitude to global problems is absolutely unique here.
Now this word cannot be used by the country's media. He was also removed from health information leaflets distributed in local hospitals, schools and workplaces.
In addition, residents of Turkmenistan who walk the streets in protective masks or talk about the spread of coronavirus infection risk being arrested.
“The Turkmen authorities have lived up to their reputation by adopting this extreme method for eradicating all information about the coronavirus,” said Jeanne Cavelier, the head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk.
“This denial of information not only endangers the Turkmen citizens most at risk but also reinforces the authoritarianism imposed by President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov. We urge the international community to react and to take him to task for his systematic human rights violations”, she said.
According to the authorities of Turkmenistan, no cases of coronavirus infection have been recorded in the country. At the same time, Reporters Without Borders believes that the prohibitions introduced are an attempt to hide information about COVID-19.
The COVID-19 outbreak began in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. March 11, the World Health Organization announced the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
According to American Johns Hopkins University, as of March 31, the total number of infected people in the world exceeded 809 thousand, of which more than 172 thousand recovered, and 39 545 people died.
Comic-tragic situation for the passengers of an air flight. 12 of the 91 passengers on a Qatar plane flying to Athens were tested negative for the new coronavirus. On landing, however, they were tested again, the result being a positive one.
As a result, Greece has suspended all flights to and from Qatar after some passengers on a Doha to Athens flight tested positive for COVID-19. Greek authorities say 12 of the passengers contracted the virus, the rest being healthy. "Because of this, flights to and from Qatar are suspended until June 15," they said.
However, the airline claims that all the passengers of the flight were healthy before boarding, in Doha.
Among those tested positive are nine Pakistani citizens living in Greece, two Greeks living in Australia and a member of a Greco-Japanese family. These people will be quarantined in a hotel for two weeks.
After a gradual exit from isolation on May 4, the tourist season officially begins on June 15 in Greece, with the reopening of seasonal hotels and the resumption of numerous international flights from the regions least affected by the pandemic.
Greece on Friday announced the opening of airports in Athens and Thessaloniki for tourists from 29 countries, including 15 in the European Union, starting June 15.
Between June 15 and 30, the planes will only be able to land in the two cities. The other regional airports and those on the Greek islands will not reopen until July 1.
Russia will begin testing a covid vaccine on paid volunteers next week, writes The Moscow Times.
Vadim Tarasov, the director of the institute that will conduct the study, explained that 50 volunteers were selected, and those who will participate in the study until the end will be paid 100,000 rubles ($ 1,450). Those who participate only partially will be rewarded with 20,000 rubles ($ 288). The vaccine was developed by a state-owned research institute.
The study, which will begin on June 7, is open to "healthy women and men, aged 18-60," according to documents distributed earlier this week on social media by students at a medical university in Moscow. Tarasov confirmed the authenticity of the test guide and the online registration form.
In the first phase of the study, participants will be isolated at a medical unit in Zvenigorod, a city 50 km from Moscow, on June 9-22. The vaccine will be administered to participants only in the second phase, which will take place between June 23 and July 20, and the volunteers will be transferred to a research center in Moscow.
Russia ranks third in the world in the number of coronavirus cases, with more than 440,000 patients. On Thursday, 8,831 new cases and 169 deaths were confirmed.
Disposable masks have invaded the beaches of Hong Kong where, for several months, residents have been covering their faces to protect themselves from the new coronavirus.
According to environmental associations, these masks add to the already worrying amounts of plastic waste floating in Hong Kong's waters, writes Agerpres.
"The disposable mask is just another weight we leave to future generations," said Gary Stokes, co-founder of OceansAsia.
Shortly before the pandemic broke out, the Hong Kong environmental organization launched a one-year study on waste and microplastics found on one of the country's most remote and uninhabited islands.
The five most commonly found items were bottles, polystyrene packaging, lighters, disposable cutlery and plastic straw.
Currently, disposable masks float on the surface of the sea, along the beaches and the coast.
Recently, environmentalists identified and collected 70 masks within a radius of 100 meters. A week later, another 30 masks were found.
"Since people started wearing masks, the consequences of this phenomenon are now visible on the beaches," Stokes said.
Hong Kong's nearly 7.5 million people produce six million tons of waste each year, of which only about 30% is recycled.
Every day, almost every country in the world counts its sick or dead because of the new coronavirus. Brazil has now become the second most affected country, after the United States. There are few places that have not been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. But there are, however, some last "points of resistance" on Earth.
Africa, a continent that seemed spared for a time of pandemic, now has no "untouched" country after including the isolated Lesotho, a high-altitude country, practically an enclave in South Africa, has already announced the first cases, in the middle of the month May.
However, some countries seem to be exempt from this wave. Of the 193 UN-recognized states, only ten have reported no cases of COVID-19.
Among them is the Samoa Islands, which has a population of 250,000. Affected by a measles epidemic that took the lives of 70 children, at the end of 2019, this archipelago in Oceania quickly declared a state of emergency, closed its schools and airport. According to France Info, the head of state ordered the population a period of fasting and prayer.
North of Australia, Vanuatu, a country in the southern Pacific Ocean, made up of about 80 islands stretching 1,300 kilometers, has not reported any cases of COVID-19. Devastated by Cyclone Harold on April 6, the small state was reluctant to accept help from abroad, for fear that this aid would bring with it another catastrophe: the coronavirus.
Another pandemic-spared Pacific state: the Solomon Islands and its 653,000 inhabitants. The 12 main islands and the 1,000 islets surrounding them have so far had no cases of coronavirus.
Micronesia, a federal state that occupies part of the Caroline Islands archipelago off the Philippines, is also part of these end-of-the-world territories that have so far escaped the coronavirus.
The same is true of the Republic of Nauru, a slightly larger island-state than Monaco, lost somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. With 160 tourists a year, it is one of the least visited places in the world. The island banned travelers from China, South Korea, Italy and then Iran, however, and suspended flights from Fiji, Kiribati and Marshall Islands.
Further west, between the Philippines and Indonesia, the Palau Islands, in the heart of the Pacific Ocean, have also benefited from their geographical isolation. Despite coronavirus contamination in late northern Mariana Islands in the east, the government has not reported any cases of COVID-19. Instead, this small country is facing significant supply shortages. Prior to the pandemic, United Airlines had six flights a week between Guam and Palau. Now there is only one flight a week.
The Marshall Islands, made up of volcanoes and coral atolls and populated by only 75,000 inhabitants, have also remained untouched by the coronavirus.
No cases have been reported in the island republic of Kiribati, with its 33 atolls, located between Polynesia and Micronesia.
All of these countries are spread across the Pacific Ocean, sometimes thousands of miles from a large city. This geographical isolation, which does not usually bring them benefits, has now proven to be a lifeline, especially as there are countries that usually do not have very strong health systems. There are small and fragile populations, which do not have, for example, artificial ventilation devices. If an epidemic broke out, their population could be decimated.
Two "free" coronavirus countries should be viewed with reluctance
There are two other countries that, so far, have not declared any case of contamination with the new coronavirus: North Korea and Turkmenistan. In both cases, the information must be viewed with reluctance, because it is governed by authoritarian regimes, too reluctant to communicate, especially when it comes to recognizing an epidemic.
In fact, North Korea placed its military forces in isolation for 30 days, according to the head of the American troops stationed in South Korea.
In Turkmenistan, you are not even allowed to talk about coronavirus. The state media remains silent and the term does not appear in medical leaflets distributed in schools, hospitals and workplaces, according to Chroniques du Turkménistan, one of the few independent sources of information whose website is blocked in Turkmenistan but is hosted by the organization Reporters Without Borders.
Ben McLean, a student at Darmouth University, said his family was surprised when Winston became the world's first dog found with COVID-19. Ben's parents were tested and detected with the new coronavirus in March. His father, a doctor at a hospital in North Carolina, became ill first, and soon his wife became infected. Ben McLean showed symptoms but was not tested.
After recovering, the three decided to participate in a study conducted by Duke University. Patients were asked to donate plasma and be tested for antibodies. Subsequently, they were asked for permission to have their pets tested.Winston was tested on April 1 and the result was positive.
All members of the McLean family, including Winston, have been declared healed and now practice social distance as a precaution. "Winston recovered. Today I went for a walk and ran through the park," said Ben McLean.