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Post-COVID, China is back in Africa and doubling down on minerals

Post-COVID, China is back in Africa and doubling down on minerals

CHINA'S flagship economic cooperation program is bouncing back after a lull during the global pandemic, with Africa a primary focus, according to a Reuters analysis of lending, investment and trade data. Chinese leaders have been citing the billions of dollars committed to new construction projects and record two-way trade as evidence of their commitment to assist with the continent's modernisation and foster "win-win" cooperation. But the data reveals a more complex relationship, one that is still largely extractive and has so far failed to live up to some of Beijing's rhetoric about the Belt and Road Initiative, President Xi Jinping's strategy…
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Experts answer questions on vaccines

Experts answer questions on vaccines

BEATRIX LOCKWOOD AN unprecedented COVID-19 vaccine campaign is underway with tens of millions now inoculated in the U.S. and around the world. Dozens of vaccine candidates are still in the pipeline, bringing hope for an end to a global pandemic. As part of our #AskReuters Twitter chat series, Reuters invited a group of healthcare experts to discuss what you should know before getting your shot. Below are edited highlights. How do the various vaccines reduce the risk of COVID-19 and its complications? How long will they provide immunity? "COVID-19 vaccines reduce complications by inducing the immune system to generate antibodies…
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Pandemic adds to war in keeping Libyan children out of school

Pandemic adds to war in keeping Libyan children out of school

THEIR young lives already disrupted by war, Libyan school children face even bigger obstacles to their education during the global pandemic than young people elsewhere. With the number of cases surging unhindered across the North African country schools have tried different tactics from opening outside to seeking donations for extra disinfectants and facemasks to allow teaching indoors. However, even those who have had no teaching for six months, or much prospect of it during the rest of this year, will have to pass an exam in order to progress to the next grade, the authorities have said. "Students did not…
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Why human rights should guide responses to the global pandemic

Why human rights should guide responses to the global pandemic

SANDRA LIEBENBERG, Distinguished Professor and H F Oppenheimer Chair in Human Rights Law, Stellenbosch University THE coronavirus pandemic has killed over a million people globally and disrupted healthcare and political systems, economies, social bonds and religious practices. What can South Africa’s Bill of Rights and international human rights treaties contribute to coronavirus responses and recovery strategies in the country and globally? My central argument is that human rights provide tools to help states build fairer societies and economies. Such societies will be more resilient to future shocks. A human rights-based approach to the pandemic is based on values. It prioritises…
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Can the United Nations protect human rights in the age of COVID-19?

Can the United Nations protect human rights in the age of COVID-19?

ON the 75th anniversary of the U.N.’s founding, experts warn human rights violations are flourishing and say the U.N. must adapt CHRISTOPHER JOHNSON DEFENDING human rights, a key mission of the United Nations, it seems, has never been harder. A global pandemic has deepened inequality, pushed millions out of work and seen governments enforce restrictions on people's movement and ramp up surveillance. Oct 24 marks 75 years since the U.N. was founded in the aftermath of World War II. The Thomson Reuters Foundation asked five former and current U.N. advisors how COVID-19 is impacting it's ability to protect human rights…
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Scarred by 2020, Gen Z looks to a COVID-free future

Scarred by 2020, Gen Z looks to a COVID-free future

LIVES that had been focussed on school, university, sports or even going to K-pop concerts vanished overnight for members of Gen Z as the global pandemic struck. While a lot was heard about older people at risk from COVID-19, this younger generation - born between the late 1990s and the early 2010s - also saw their worlds turned upside down in 2020. Reuters profiled 10 young people around the world to learn how their lives had been affected by the coronavirus. Shut up in bedrooms - many forced to live with their parents - some went from being students, athletes…
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COVID-19: How to reduce risk in the holiday season

COVID-19: How to reduce risk in the holiday season

DOYIN ODUBANJO, Executive Secretary, Nigerian Academy of Science DURING the festive season, travel and gatherings are sometimes unavoidable, even in a global pandemic. Dr Doyin Odubanjo, Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Academy of Science and a past chairman of the Association of Public Health Physicians of Nigeria, shares five tips for a safe Christmas during COVID-19. In this video interview, the public health physician explains the “3 Cs” people should avoid in order to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. They are: crowds, close contact and confined spaces. - The Conversation https://www.youtube.com/embed/lHG_b-g5RgM Keeping safe during Christmas to prevent COVID-19.
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Leaders in COVID fight praised in Forbes list of world’s powerful women

Leaders in COVID fight praised in Forbes list of world’s powerful women

MATTHEW LAVIETES FEMALE leaders who have stood out for their handling of the coronavirus earned honors in the annual Forbes list of the world's 100 most powerful women, which highlighted women's roles in battling the global pandemic. Women from prime ministers to corporate executives earned spots in the list for their achievements helping mitigate and control the deadly contagious virus, which has infected more than 67 million people and caused 1.54 million deaths, Forbes said. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen, Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin, European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde and Tokyo Governor Yuriko…
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How will the COVID pandemic end?

How will the COVID pandemic end?

AFTER over 18 months of this pandemic, with the social distancing, mask-wearing and on-off lockdowns, what we all want to know more than anything else is when it will all be over and how it will end. While nothing is certain, we have a lot of evidence on which to build some realistic expectations about how the pandemic will progress over the next year or so. PAUL HUNTER, Professor of Medicine, University of East Anglia COVID-19 may not be the first time a coronavirus has caused a dreadful global pandemic. It’s been hypothesised that the “Russian flu”, which emerged in…
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‘End is in sight’: tackling a rare disease in a global pandemic

‘End is in sight’: tackling a rare disease in a global pandemic

EMELINE WUILBERCQ OKELLO Aballa Ognum regularly has to walk deep into the jungles of southwest Ethiopia to treat the water ponds that harbour a debilitating parasitic disease. Painstakingly, he measures the water volume to determine how much chemical treatment to use against copepods, the tiny water fleas that carry the Guinea worm larvae. If ingested by humans, the larvae can grow up to a meter long before emerging through the skin, leading to serious disability and amputation in the worst cases. Killing them is only part of Okello's job - he also teaches the community about the dangers of drinking…
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