COVID 19 Situation around the world: the latest developments

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Japan is considering requiring negative Covid 19 test results or proof of vaccination from fans planning to attend the Tokyo Olympics. Public opposition to the Games remains strong amid a fourth wave of infections and the slow rollout of vaccinations.
Foreign spectators have already been barred and Games organizers are expected to make a decision next month on whether Japanese fans can attend the Games and, if so, under what conditions. Japan on Friday (May 28) extended a state of emergency in Tokyo and other areas until June 20. The Games have already been postponed once because of the pandemic, but the Japanese government and the International Olympic Committee have said the event will run from July 23 to Aug. 8 under strict Covid-safe rules.

Admission to a concert in the U.S. state of Florida is to cost only $18 for fully vaccinated people, but $1,000 for unvaccinated guests. The organizer stressed that the “discount” is not about telling people to get vaccinated. “If someone wants to come unvaccinated, they will discourage many guests and will have to pay the difference,” it said. Organizer Paul Williams told the U.S. Washington Post that he received numerous hate messages and threats from anti-vaccination activists after the offer became public. The differential pricing was a case of discrimination, a spokeswoman for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said, according to the newspaper. The Republican had recently signed a law prohibiting stores, government agencies, schools and universities from requiring their customers, students or pupils to be vaccinated. The law does not take effect until July.

In London, hundreds of people demonstrated Saturday (5/29) against the government’s Corona measures. The issues were lockdowns, vaccines and vaccination cards. Some demonstrators claimed the pandemic was a hoax and carried signs reading “My body, my choice,” news agencies reported. Several hundred people invaded a shopping center in west London, chanting “no more lockdowns “and “take your freedom back,” the Guardian reported. Plans to end England’s pandemic restrictions on June 21 are threatened by the rapid spread of the viral variant first found in India.

Thousands of Brazilians protested against President Jair Bolsonaro and his Corona policies in dozens of cities on Saturday (5/29). Protesters’ demands included Bolsonaro’s impeachment, the procurement of Corona vaccines and an increase in social welfare in pandemic times. These were among the largest protests against Bolsonaro since the pandemic began. Bolsonaro continues to reject protective measures on economic grounds. In the meantime, he has also cast doubt on the wisdom of vaccinations. A parliamentary committee of inquiry into his Corona crisis management is underway.

In the U.S., half of the population of about 330 million has now (5/29) received at least the first vaccination. About 40 percent of the population is already fully vaccinated. Of the roughly 260 million adults in the U.S., just over 62 percent have been vaccinated at least once, and more than 51 percent are fully vaccinated, CDC data show. Among the most vulnerable population aged 65 and older, 86 percent have already received at least one dose of a vaccine, according to the data. Many states, municipalities and businesses are now offering significant incentives – from raffles offering millions in prizes to cruises – to further increase vaccination rates.

– hp with reports from news agencies/picture: pixabay.com

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