Professor John Edmunds, member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said it was “too early to judge” whether December 2 was too early to lift current restrictions and said the levels was not “a very well thought out solution.” strategy ”.
His comments came after 462 more deaths from the coronavirus and 26,860 cases were reported in the UK on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Professor Andrew Pollard, who led the Oxford University and AstraZeneca trial, said his team was “optimistic” that tens of millions of doses of the coronavirus vaccines made in China UK could start production by the end of the year.
And Labor has called for emergency legislation to “eradicate dangerous anti-vax content” following promising preliminary results from the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine.
The opposition claimed that dedicated anti-vaccination groups with hundreds of thousands of members on social media were “producing disinformation” on the issue.
IMF member in Argentina tests positive for Covid
A member of the International Monetary Fund’s mission to Argentina tested positive for the coronavirus, forcing the team to isolate and hold next week’s meetings online, the IMF said.
The mission arrived in Argentina last week to discuss a new funding program with officials in the South American nation, which is battling a stubborn coronavirus outbreak that has yet hit its already struggling economy.
The IMF said in a statement that every member of the team arriving from Washington, as well as local staff, had been tested for the virus on Saturday, according to Argentine protocols.
Only one tested positive, but all would isolate themselves and take another test as a precaution.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 3:29 PM
Government gave lobbyists access to confidential coronavirus briefings
The government has given an influential lobbyist access to confidential information about the coronavirus pandemic, it has been revealed.
Former Soleil The political editor and current president of Portland Communications, George Pascoe-Watson, was quietly appointed “adviser” to the government in April.
He briefed paying customers on the government’s thinking, including upcoming lockdowns.
Mr Pascoe-Watson emailed customers on October 15, telling them he had been “privately informed” that the new restrictions in London would last six months until spring, Le Sunday Times reported.
“The decision-makers told me personally,” he said.
He also anticipated the second national lockout, telling his clients that the prime minister “would announce next week that he was ready to ‘sacrifice November to save December'”.
Our political correspondent Jon Stone has the whole story:
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 3:22 PM
Twitter is endorsing a video released by the German government as part of its anti-coronavirus campaign.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 2:55 PM
French Catholics protest against coronavirus restrictions
Catholics held an open-air mass in the city of Nantes in western France on Sunday to protest Covid-19 restrictions, under which the masses are banned in churches.
Some Catholics have also gathered near the Saint-Louis Cathedral of Versailles, near Paris, but police have banned a planned protest in the capital.
In Nantes, home to one of France’s best-known cathedrals, dozens of people, wearing face masks, knelt with umbrellas in the pouring rain to pray in the central Graslin square and to support appeals for resumption of public masses.
“It’s very difficult for us. It is as if we are deprived of our food. We need our spiritual food. When we are deprived of our mass, it is like being deprived of our food, ”said Jérôme Duchesne, a protester participating in the ceremony in Nantes.
He said the masses should resume as churches and cathedrals could easily adopt Covid-19 health protocols, for example by having enough space between worshipers.
As part of a lockdown that went into effect on October 30, large public gatherings in all religious venues have been banned, over fears the virus could spread quickly in enclosed spaces.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 2:36 PM
More news from Northern Ireland: The occupancy rate of hospitals in the region fell from 98% to 94% in 24 hours.
One hospital is currently overcapacity – Ulster Hospital in Dundonald, down from four hospitals on Saturday.
As of Sunday, there were 415 hospital patients for Covid-19 in hospitals in the region, 49 of whom were being treated in intensive care.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 2:40 PM
Algerian President Ends Covid Treatment
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has completed his treatment for Covid-19 but will undergo follow-up checks, the presidency of the North African country announced on Sunday.
Mr Tebboune, 75, was flown to a German hospital 19 days ago after testing positive for coronavirus.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 2:32 PM
Coronavirus deaths increase by nine in Northern Ireland
Nine other people with Covid-19 have died in Northern Ireland, the Department of Health said.
The death toll recorded by the department now stands at 855.
There were also 472 other confirmed cases of the virus recorded during the last 24-hour reporting period.
A total of 46,831 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in Northern Ireland since the start of the pandemic.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 2:21 PM
NI Health Minister likely to call for more restrictions before Christmas
Northern Ireland’s Minister of Health has said he is likely to ask for further restrictions on coronaviruses before Christmas.
Robin Swann’s remarks on Sunday came after a week of fighting in Stormont over the coalition administration’s pandemic response.
After four days of acrimonious exchanges, a majority of ministers finally backed a proposal that saw the four-week lockdown in the region extended by a week, followed by a gradual reopening of hotel businesses.
Mr Swann voted for the proposals, but reluctantly. He had called for a full two-week lockdown extension and said he only voted for the compromise deal because ministers had “run out of time” and a failure to strike a deal would have resulted in the default expiration of all restrictions on Friday evening.
He said: “I am disappointed, I am embarrassed and ashamed that it took us until Thursday to come to this compromise deal, it does not go far enough in my opinion. “
The minister has made it clear that he will demand changes to the current plans before they are fully implemented.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 2:17 PM
Police stop baptism by breaking lockdown rules
Police have stopped a baptism attended by 30 worshipers in violation of coronavirus lockdown restrictions.
The congregation had gathered at The Angel Church in north London on Sunday before the Metropolitan Police interrupted the service.
Senior Pastor Regan King said he wanted to organize baptism without restriction because it “served a greater good.”
Two police vans and a police car were parked in front of the Mount Zion Hall church building in Clerkenwell, while around four police officers stood at the entrance to keep people out.
Police allowed 15 people to stay inside the church, while another 15 participated in a socially distant field service nearby.
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 13:42
Covid vaccine results bolster hopes of a “controlled” pandemic
The promising results of a coronavirus vaccine candidate increase the chances of bringing the pandemic under control, said one of its developers.
Ugur Sahin, CEO of BioNTech, said it was also “very likely” that other vaccines than his candidate would work.
Earlier this week, Pfizer and BioNtech announced that their vaccine candidate was found to be 90% effective in preventing disease in a major trial.
Mr Sahin said it was “extremely relieving” to find that their vaccine had been shown to be effective in trials.
Zoe Tidman has the full story:
Emily GoddardNovember 15, 2020 1:09 PM