COVID-19

WHO worried COVID ‘amnesia’ will lead to another pandemic

“I have seen the amnesia that seems to descend upon the world after a traumatic event, and that’s understandable,” Mike Ryan told a briefing in Geneva.

“But if we do this again like we did after SARS, like we did after H5N1, like we did after H1N1 pandemic, if we continue to ignore the realities of what emerging and dangerous pathogens can do to our civilization, then we are likely to experience the same or worse again within our lifetimes,” he said.

Pakistan cricket great Shoaib Akhtar reacts to possible cancellation of New Zealand tour

New Zealand's Ministry of Health has given the entire touring party a final warning after some of them breached isolation conditions at their quarantine hotel in Christchurch.

Six of the team have now tested positive for Covid-19.

Shoaib was upset by the inference that New Zealand Cricket is considering the tour could be called off.

Wallis and Futuna records third Covid-19 case

The infected individual, who is asymptomatic, arrived in the territory from France on 16 November.

The person tested positive while in quarantine and has now been transferred to the hospital's isolation ward.

People arriving in Wallis and Futuna undergo two Covid-19 tests before leaving quarantine.

The first test is done seven days after they arrive and the second is done the day before they leave quarantine.

The latest case was diagnosed after the first such test.

Pacific Community sets foundations for post-COVID recovery at 50th Meeting of CRGA

. This year the 50th meeting of the Committee of Representatives of Governments and Administrations (CRGA) – SPC's main governance body, which has been in existence since 1984 – was set to be held in Noumea, with delegations from 26 member countries and territories and numerous international observers gathering in "The Meeting House of the Pacific".

However, the global pandemic and associated travel restrictions required the meeting to be held in a hybrid fashion, with some participants present in Noumea and Suva, and others participating through virtual connections.

Covid-infected ship in American Samoa to remain offshore

The container ship, the Fesko Askold, has 17 crew on board.

It arrived in Pago Pago on Sunday afternoon and sailed out of the main harbour at nine yesterday morning.

It remains about eight kilometres from shore.

American Samoa's COVID-19 task force chairman Iulogologo Joseph Pereira said this would allow local authorities to complete their assessment of the situation and come up with a plan to offload and pick up containers.

He said steps had been taken to decontaminate the dock in case of any contamination while the vessel was dockside.

US President-elect Joe Biden urges mask-wearing to save 'thousands of lives'

Biden said the US faced a "very dark winter" and the "worst wave yet", and Americans had to put aside political differences to tackle Covid-19.

He has named a new task force and vowed to "follow the science" as he puts together his transition team.

Donald Trump still refuses to concede defeat and is challenging key results. He is taking legal action in several states.

Biden's victory was declared on Saturday but it remains a projection, with a number of states still counting ballot papers. He leads Trump in the nationwide vote by about 4.5 million.

Pacific nations security leaders share COVID-19 lessons

The Chief of the Defence Force General Angus Campbell AO DSC, Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece P Kershaw APM, and Australian Border Force Commissioner Michael Outram APM, joined security leaders from 24 nations and territories, and five regional bodies for the strategic-level dialogue.

The themes for the event focused on responding to the collective challenge of COVID-19 in the areas of border security, maritime security, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) and how to become better than the sum of our parts.

Italy imposes regional lockdown as Europe battles Covid-19 surges

Italy is now split into three zones: red for high risk, then orange and yellow. The red areas are Lombardy, Piedmont and Aosta Valley in the north and Calabria in the south.

The whole country has a night curfew.

In neighbouring Slovenia police clashed with violent anti-lockdown protesters.

Riot police used water cannon and teargas to disperse the crowd of several hundred outside parliament in the capital Ljubljana. Some demonstrators threw bottles, stones and smoke bombs at officers.

Pacific Trade looks to strengthen E-commerce as a driver for economic development post COVID-19

The workshop, part of the Pacific E-commerce Initiative, is enabling trade officials across the region to unpack findings of a Pacific E-commerce assessment, and a sub-regional assessment for the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG). These discussions will feed into a Pacific E-Commerce Strategy aiming to lift engagement in digital trade.

Macron declares second national lockdown in France

Mr Macron said that under the new measures, starting on Friday, people would only be allowed to leave home for essential work or medical reasons.

Non-essential businesses, such as restaurants and bars, will close, but schools and factories will remain open.

Covid daily deaths in France are at the highest level since April. On Tuesday, 33,000 new cases were confirmed.

Mr Macron said the country risked being "overwhelmed by a second wave that no doubt will be harder than the first".