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Coronavirus booster shots “not a luxury”, WHO Europe head says

WHO Europe Hans Kluge

Copenhagen, DenmarkReuters A third-dose booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccination is a way to keep the most vulnerable safe and “not a luxury”, the World Health Organization said on Monday. The WHO said earlier this month data did not indicate a need for booster shots, while topping up already fully vaccinated people would further widen […]

Afghanistan’s healthcare system near collapse, aid agencies warn

Afghanistan aid 2015

New Delhi, India/Hong KongReuters Afghanistan’s healthcare system is at risk of collapse, two major aid agencies told Reuters, after foreign donors stopped providing aid following the Taliban takeover.  After the United States withdraw the bulk of its remaining troops last month, the Taliban accelerated its military campaign, taking control of the capital Kabul on 15th […]

Last US forces leave Afghanistan after almost 20 years

Afghanistan US evacuations

Updated: 8.45am (AEST)Washington DC, USReuters The United States completed the withdrawal of its forces from Afghanistan on Monday, ending 20 years of war that culminated in the militant Taliban’s return to power. Washington and its NATO allies were forced into a hasty exit. Following a chaotic evacuation, they leave behind thousands of Afghans who helped […]

Indonesia schools start cautious reopening after devastating virus wave

Indonesia Jakarta school children

Jakarta, IndonesiaReuters Indonesia’s capital Jakarta reopened 600 of its schools on Monday as coronavirus restrictions eased, though a teacher federation urged caution and warned of clusters in classrooms caused by the highly transmissible Delta variant. Jakarta’s infection rate has dropped, authorities said, from a peak last month that saw Indonesia become Asia’s coronavirus epicentre, with […]

Australian churches, Christian organisations launch campaign to resettle 20,000 Afghans

Afghanistan people outside Kabul airport

Sydney, Australia Mainstream Australian churches and Christian organisations have launched a campaign for the “just and compassionate commitment” to resettle 20,000 refugees fleeing from the Taliban in Afghanistan. In a significant sign of unity, the denominations and organisations have joined together in support of the ‘Christians United for Afghanistan‘ campaign, which is lobbying the Federal […]

US intelligence community says cannot solve COVID mystery without China

Coronavirus model

Washington DC, USReuters The US intelligence community does not believe it can resolve a debate over whether a Chinese laboratory incident was the source of COVID-19 without more information, US officials said in a declassified summary. US officials said on Friday that only China can help solve questions about the true origins of the virus […]

A weary Australia plans reopening as COVID-19 death toll hits 1,000

Australia Sydney vaccination centre

Sydney, AustraliaReuters As Australia’s COVID-19 deaths exceed 1,000, a grim toll but modest by global standards, a country that has used relentless lockdowns now faces perhaps its biggest health policy challenge of the pandemic – how to reopen. The highly infectious Delta variant has breached the country’s fortress-style controls and entrenched itself deep enough in […]

Brazil’s Bolsonaro tells evangelical leaders he will be arrested, killed or declared winner

Brazil Jair Bolsonaro August 2021

Brasilia, BrazilReuters Brazilian far-right President Jair Bolsonaro on Saturday said he sees three alternatives for his future: winning the 2022 presidential elections, death or prison. “I have three alternatives for my future: being arrested, killed or victory,” he said, in remarks to a meeting of evangelical leaders. Bolsonaro later added that the first option is […]

No jobs, passports for ‘anti-national’ social media posts in India

India New Delhi farmers protests

Thomson Reuters Foundation At least three Indian states are denying passports and government jobs to people because of their social media posts or participation in protests, human rights activists said. In a move that could jeopardise the futures of tens of thousands of vocal young Indians, authorities in Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar and Uttarakhand have […]