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France extends weekend lockdown to northern region

Paris - Hundreds of thousands of people in northern France went back into lockdown Saturday, while health officials stepped up a nationwide vaccination campaign to make up ground after a slow start.

US in mourning over 500,000 Covid deaths, UK sees hope

Washington - President Joe Biden ordered flags lowered to half mast Monday after the United States crossed the "heartbreaking" milestone of 500,000 Covid-19 deaths, while Britain eyed lifting lockdowns in the latest sign of global gains against the pandemic.

UN Security Council to debate challenge of global vaccine access

New York - At the initiative of Britain, which boasts of having an effective vaccination program, the UN Security Council on Wednesday will debate the problem of global access to Covid-19 vaccines, raising issues likely to underscore sharp differences between cou...

French nun, Europe's oldest person, turns 117 after surviving Covid

Toulon - Europe's oldest person, French nun Sister Andre, turns 117 on Thursday after surviving Covid-19 last month and living through two world wars, with a special birthday feast including her favourite dessert -- Baked Alaska.

French far-right mayor reopens museums, defying Covid closure

Perpignan - A far-right mayor in France threw down the gauntlet to the central government on Tuesday by reopening his city's museums in defiance of coronavirus rules.

French Caribbean islands in dire straits as new Covid rules hit

Paris - It's February and the palm-fringed beaches of French islands in the Caribbean should be dotted with mainland tourists on mid-term holidays.

Brazil's late and rocky start on vaccinations fuels public ire

Bras - Brazil's newly launched vaccination campaign against Covid-19 has gotten off to a late and rocky start -- as the country is hammered by a second wave of the disease, it is already close to running out of vaccine, syringes and other vital equipment, acc...

In Brazil's Manaus, young people step up as Covid bites

Manaus - Haylena Barbosa, a 22-year-old Brazilian, has put her old life on hold to help ease the pain and logistical challenges wrought by a devastating second wave of Covid-19 in her home city of Manaus in the Amazon.

Supporters angry as France jails suspected organiser of New Year rave

Rennes - French authorities charged and jailed a suspected organiser of an illegal New Year rave that saw 2,400 people defy virus rules, in a ruling slammed on Wednesday by his supporters as an injustice.

Mass rave during pandemic leaves questions for French police

Rennes - The sight of French police standing by as 2,500 people broke a national curfew to attend an illegal rave has embarrassed the government and led to questions as to why the partying was allowed to continue for two nights.

Hundreds booked for Covid violations as mass French NYE rave ends

Lieuron - More than 1,200 revellers were booked for breaking coronavirus restrictions as an illegal rave in northwestern France ended on Saturday after more than two days of partying that saw clashes with police.

Hundreds booked for Covid violations as mass French NYE rave ends

Lieuron - More than 1,200 revellers were booked for breaking coronavirus restrictions as an illegal rave in northwestern France ended on Saturday after more than two days of partying that saw clashes with police.

Hundreds booked for Covid violations as mass French NYE rave ends

Lieuron - More than 1,200 revellers were booked for breaking coronavirus restrictions as an illegal rave in northwestern France ended on Saturday after more than two days of partying that saw clashes with police.

Criticism grows in France over 'slow' vaccination drive

Paris - The French government on Wednesday faced criticism over the slow progress of its drive to vaccinate people against Covid-19, a problem compounded by the high levels of public scepticism about the campaign.

English fishing boats forced to remain in port during virus border closures

Scarborough - Fishing boats in the north of England were forced to remain in port on Monday because of the disruption to supply chains caused by French border closures following the discovery of a new coronavirus variant in the UK.

US hospital converts nearby parking lot into Covid care facility

Reno - To cope with an influx of coronavirus patients, a hospital in Reno in the western US state of Nevada has transformed two floors of a nearby parking garage into a care unit dealing with patients experiencing less severe symptoms.

French researchers warn of virus risk from eating out

Paris - Spending time in a bar or restaurant increases the risk of catching Covid-19, French researchers said Thursday, while having guests over for dinner also plays a key role in transmission.

First in line for Covid vaccine? Some US health care workers say no

New York - They can move to front of the line for a Covid-19 vaccine if they want, but some US health care workers are skeptical about taking a vaccine that was developed in record time -- even as the pandemic rages on.

US Operation Warp Speed backed vaccines for whole world

Washington - President Donald Trump's announcement in May of plans to develop a Covid-19 vaccine by year's end is near realization -- despite a setback among one of the six candidates that the US supported.

Coronavirus treatments: some progress, no panacea

Paris - Nearly a year after a mysterious pneumonia emerged in China and began its global spread, there is still no silver bullet treatment for Covid-19 despite an unprecedented effort to discover new medicines or repurpose existing drugs.

Covid vaccines: Why the safety process reassures experts

Washington - Covid-19 vaccine emergency approvals are around the corner, makers are preparing to ship millions of doses -- and experts are trying to reassure the public that the record-breaking speed of development hasn't compromised safety.

Macron poised to soften lockdown as virus caseload drops

Paris - French President Emmanuel Macron is expected to announce lighter coronavirus restrictions on Tuesday thanks to a recent drop in new infections, paving the way for shops to reopen swiftly and allow travel for Christmas.

Americans defy virus guidelines for high-risk Thanksgiving

New York - Busy airports and serpentine queues at testing sites: many Americans plan to celebrate Thanksgiving with extended family Thursday despite authorities warning they risk exacerbating the coronavirus pandemic engulfing the country.

Can surgical masks be reused?

Paris - Health authorities say the most widespread anti-Covid weapon -- surgical masks -- must be thrown away after a single use, but environmental concerns are pushing some scientists to question this recommendation.

US hospitals again under pressure with Covid on the rise

Washington - After several weeks of rapidly rising coronavirus cases, hospitals around the United States are once again overwhelmed, forcing local authorities to take new measures to cope with the pandemic.

How contagious are kids with Covid? Short answer: we don't know

Paris - Are children a major source of contagion for Covid-19? Ten months into a pandemic that has claimed 1.2 million lives experts are still divided on the question, even as governments must decide whether to keep classrooms open or shut.

Macron imposes new virus lockdown as French hospitals engulfed

Paris - French President Emmanuel Macron announced Wednesday a new coronavirus lockdown until at least December 1, hoping to bring under control an outbreak that is poised to overwhelm hospitals in a matter of days.

'Hard choices' as France weighs new virus clampdown

Paris - French officials said Tuesday that tougher restrictions are looming to counter an alarming surge in Covid-19 cases, with doctors warning that many hospitals are just days away from being overrun with patients.

Paris under curfew as Europe battles soaring virus caseload

Paris - Millions of Europeans faced tough new coronavirus restrictions on Saturday as governments stepped up efforts to slow the surge in infections, after the World Health Organization reported a "very concerning" 44-percent rise in European cases over one we...

Last night out in France for millions as virus curfew imposed

Paris - Millions of French people enjoyed a last night of freedom on Friday before a Covid-19 curfew in Paris and other large cities came into force at midnight, for a least a month, prompted by an alarming surge in new cases.
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