Tag Archives: surge

China records highest surge in virus cases since April

China records highest surge in virus cases since AprilChina recorded 61 new coronavirus cases on Monday — the highest daily figure since April — propelled by clusters in three separate regions that have sparked fears of a fresh wave. The bulk of 57 new domestic cases were found in the far northwestern Xinjiang region, according to the National Health Commission, where a sudden outbreak in the regional capital of Urumqi occurred in mid-July. Fourteen domestic cases were also recorded in the northeastern province of Liaoning where a fresh cluster broke out in the city of Dalian last week.

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George Soros conspiracy theories surge as protests sweep US

George Soros conspiracy theories surge as protests sweep USGeorge Soros, the billionaire investor and philanthropist who has long been a target of conspiracy theories, is now being falsely accused of orchestrating and funding the protests over police killings of Black people that have roiled the United States. Amplified by a growing number of people on the far right, including some Republican leaders, online posts about Soros have skyrocketed in recent weeks. The Hungarian-American, who is Jewish, has also been the subject of anti-Semitic attacks and conspiracy theories for decades.



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US to withdraw troops from Iraq over coming months despite Islamic State surge

US to withdraw troops from Iraq over coming months despite Islamic State surgeThe US said it will withdraw troops from Iraq in the coming months, six months after the assassination of an Iranian general in Baghdad threatened to see them expelled from the country. The announcement comes amid a spike of Islamic State activity in the country, and as Baghdad and Washington began long-anticipated talks over the future of the presence of the US in the country. A joint statement read: "In light of significant progress towards eliminating the Isis threat, over the coming months the U.S. would continue reducing forces from Iraq.” Relations between the two plummeted to an all-time low this year after the US killed Iranian spy chief Qassim Soleimani in an airstrike near Baghdad airport in January. Iranian-backed militias have since launched repeated rocket attacks on the US Embassy in Baghdad, and on military bases housing US troops. At the time, Iraqi officials were publicly furious, with President Barham Salih, describing the airstrike as a breach of sovereignty. The Iraqi parliament passed a non-binding resolution to expel American troops immediately. Yet, US officials insisted both publicly and privately that they would leave on their timetable, and only when Iraq was capable of handling its own security affairs. US-led efforts against Isil n Syria are heavily reliant on Washington’s presence in Iraq. The October 2019 raid that killed Isil-chief Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi was conducted by forces flown in from bases in Iraq. The withdrawal announcement comes as attacks by Isil surge in the country. A recent study by the Combatting Terrorism Center at West Point notes that Isil claimed 566 attacks in Iraq in the first quarter of 2020 – a notable increase on previous months. The study described Isil as showing “very significant resilience”, adding that “the movement has undertaken an agile, fluid, and pragmatic shift back to insurgency in every area of Iraq where the group has lost physical control of populations and resources.” At 5,200, the current contingent of US troops in Iraq is already considerably reduced compared to the peak in 2007, when numbers topped 160,000 under President George W. Bush. The Trump administration has attempted to balance its desire to bring as many troops as possible home before the presidential election later this year, and a “maximum pressure” campaign on Iran – Iraq is seen as a key battleground in the rivalry. Though no exact figures were given, western officials believe the reduction will halve the number of US troops remaining in Iraq, with further reductions possible before the end of the year.



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Russia's Putin orders gradual easing of coronavirus lockdown despite surge in cases

Russia's Putin orders gradual easing of coronavirus lockdown despite surge in casesRussian President Vladimir Putin on Monday announced a gradual easing of coronavirus lockdown measures despite a new surge in infections which took Russia’s tally past Italy’s, making it the fourth highest in the world. Putin, in a televised nationwide address, said that from Tuesday he would start lifting restrictions that had forced many people to work from home and businesses to temporarily close. The Russian leader emphasised the lifting of restrictions would be gradual and that individual regions in the world’s largest country would need to tailor their approach to varying local conditions.



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Cases of novel coronavirus in Russia surge past 10,000 after record daily rise

Cases of novel coronavirus in Russia surge past 10,000 after record daily riseRussia on Thursday reported a record one-day rise in cases of novel coronavirus, pushing the official tally to more than 10,000, a day after President Vladimir Putin said the coming weeks would prove decisive in the fight against the virus. The number of cases jumped by 1,459 and 13 more people died, the national coronavirus crisis response centre said on its website. Moscow, the worst-affected region, and many other regions are in their second week of a partial lockdown.



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