Category الجزیره

Bali COVID-19 surge blamed on inaccurate rapid tests for visitors

Jakarta, Indonesia – Medical experts have linked a surge in coronavirus cases on Bali to the inaccurate, low-cost rapid antibody test kits that are being used to screen domestic visitors to the Indonesian resort island.

Foreign tourists were banned from entering Indonesia on April 2, and while a plan to reopen Bali to international travellers this week has been dropped, domestic air travel resumed on July 31.

Since then, the island has been welcoming an average of 3,000 domestic tourists every day, mostly from the neighbouring island of Java, the country’s most densely populated province, and also the worst-hit by the pandemic.

Throughout July and the first half of August, the number of new confirmed cases in Bali fell as low as 27 cases per day on August 10, with a seven-day average of 4...

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Doctors in South Korea suspend strike: Coronavirus live news

Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m Kate Mayberry in Kuala Lumpur and will be keeping you updated over the next few hours.

  • Trainee doctors and interns will return to work this morning in South Korea after a weeks-long strike over government reform plans.
  • There have been more than 27.2 million cases of coronavirus confirmed around the world, according to Johns Hopkins University, and 890,923 people have died. More than 18.2 million people have recovered. 

Here are the latest updates:

Tuesday, September 8

01:30 GMT – Japan’s economy shrinks more than thought in Q2

It seems Japan’s economy shrank even more than initially thought in the second quarter to the end of June.

The government initially said the economy contracted by 7...

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Trump and Biden on the offensive as US general election kicks off

United States President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden took rhetorical swipes at each other on Monday as the presidential campaign entered its traditional homestretch on the US Labor Day holiday.

Trump described Biden, whom he trails in national polls, as a threat to the economy and “stupid”, while Biden took aim at Trump’s reported disparaging of fallen troops.

At a White House news conference, Trump said: “Biden and his very liberal running mate [Senator Kamala Harris], the most liberal person in Congress by the way – is not a competent person in my opinion, would destroy this country and would destroy this economy.”

He also called Biden “stupid”. Trump has frequently referred to the former vice president as “Sleepy Joe”.

Trump pushed back again against a report in The At...

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Remote towns evacuated as California wildfire grows

Evacuation orders have been expanded to more mountain communities as a huge wildfire churns through California’s Sierra National Forest on Monday, one of dozens of blazes crews battled during a heatwave that shattered records across the most populous state in the United States.

Firefighters working in steep terrain through the night saved the tiny town of Shaver Lake from flames that roared down hillsides toward a marina. To the north, about 30 houses were destroyed in the remote hamlet of Big Creek.

“About half the private homes in town burned down,” Big Creek resident Toby Wait said. “Words cannot even begin to describe the devastation of this community. And it is a very close-knit community.”

An elementary school, church, library, historic general store and a major hydroelectric plant ...

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Saving Beirut’s destroyed climbing wall

When I first heard of the Beirut blast on August 4 that killed nearly 200 people and injured more than 6,000 others, I immediately messaged climbing friends in Lebanon. “Are you okay?” I asked Charlie Sifri.

“Yes we’re all safe but the climbing gym is destroyed. We’re lucky Flyp was closed or we’d have perished,” Charlie responded.

I had met Charlie and Beirut’s climbing community in January while reporting on anti-government protests. Climbing for me was a respite from long workdays – for them, an escape from a country in turmoil. Making friends is common in the climbing world and I made them at the Flyp gym. 

That week of the blast, the Lebanese government allowed businesses to reopen after months of COVID-19 restrictions. But an electricity blackout and a lack of fuel – on the day of o...

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Africa leaders: Mali military gov’t must name president by Sep 15

The West African regional bloc ECOWAS called on Mali’s new military government that seized power last month to appoint a civilian to head a transition government by September 15.

The 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) slapped sanctions on Mali after the August 18 coup, including closing borders and banning trade, and has called for elections within 12 months.

The military government has proposed a years-long, military-led transition back to civilian rule, but ECOWAS commission chief Jean-Claude Kassi Brou has insisted it be led by a civilian president and prime minister for a 12-month period.

In the final statement of an ECOWAS summit in Niger’s capital Niamey on Monday, Brou said Mali’s civilian transition president and prime minister “must be appointed no lat...

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Egypt: Lawyers say Morsi’s son killed by ‘lethal substance’

Lawyers for the family of Egypt’s ex-president Mohamed Morsi said they obtained information showing his youngest son was killed by “a lethal substance” and not a heart attack as authorities earlier claimed.

Abdullah Morsi, 25, died a year ago on September 4 in a hospital in Giza, southwest of the Egyptian capital Cairo.

A government report at the time said Abdullah was driving his car when he had sudden spasms, and he was immediately taken to a hospital, but doctors were unable to revive him.

Several local news sites reported the death saying there was no criminal suspicion, while noting Morsi’s son had suffered several previous health scares, and that he was saddened by his father’s recent death.

Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically elected president, died on June 17, 2019, after...

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US elections live updates: Trump and Biden campaigns ramp up

  • Biden is heading to the crucial battleground state of Pennsylvania on Monday, where he plans to speak with union workers.

  • Trump will hold a 1pm (17:00 GMT) news conference on economic recovery from the pandemic

  • Kamala Harris and Mike Pence are both visiting the key battleground state of Wisconsin, days after Trump and Biden visited the city of Kenosha, a hotspot in the country’s civil and racial unrest. 

  • Biden remains ahead nearly seven points in national polling averages; some polls have suggested a tightening race in states considered key to winning the Electoral College. 

  • Today is the Labor Day holiday, a date that historically signifies the beginning of the most aggressive stretch of campaigning. There are 56 days until the general election on November 3. 

Here are the lat...

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US Elections: Trump and Biden campaigns ramp up

  • Biden is heading to the crucial battleground state of Pennsylvania on Monday, where he plans to speak with union workers.

  • Trump will hold a 1pm (17:00 GMT) news conference on economic recovery from the pandemic

  • Kamala Harris and Mike Pence are both visiting the key battleground state of Wisconsin, days after Trump and Biden visited the city of Kenosha, a hotspot in the country’s civil and racial unrest. 

  • Biden remains ahead nearly seven points in national polling averages; some polls have suggested a tightening race in states considered key to winning the Electoral College. 

  • Today is the Labor Day holiday, a date that historically signifies the beginning of the most aggressive stretch of campaigning. There are 56 days until the general election on November 3. 

Here are the lat...

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Belarus protest leader ‘abducted’ after mass anti-gov’t march

Belarusian protest leader Maria Kolesnikova has been abducted by unidentified individuals in central Minsk, according to the Belarusian Tut.By media outlet, citing a witness.

Masked men took her and drove off in a minivan, said Tut.By.

The development on Monday came hours after security forces arrested 633 protesters following a mass anti-government rally on Sunday, the latest since the disputed August election.

Police in Minsk said they had not arrested Kolesnikova, according to Russia’s Interfax news agency.

Kolesnikova is the last one left in Belarus of three female politicians who joined forces before the August 9 presidential election to challenge longtime leader Alexander Lukashenko.

A vocal critic of Lukashenko, she has played an important role in the country’s post-election poli...

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