Coronavirus

Five more Covid-19 cases are confirmed in Fiji quarantine

They include a 44-year-old man, a 38-year-old woman, a 51-year-old man, a 29-year-old woman and a 47-year-old man.

The acting permanent secretary of health, James Fong, said one of them is the husband of one of the three patients confirmed earlier this week.

He said all eight cases were caught in border quarantine and there's no threat to the community.

Dr Fong said they are all stable in isolation at Nadi and Lautoka hospitals.

All eight people were passengers on the same repatriation flight from India, which arrived in Nadi on Saturday.

The tenants enduring Australia's toughest lockdown

But for 3,000 people living in public housing tower blocks, an even stricter lockdown was imposed on Saturday.

Unlike other Melburnians, residents of the nine towers cannot leave for any reason - they are subject to a police guard.

It's the toughest lockdown seen in Australia so far.

The "detention directions" in suburbs of Flemington and North Melbourne are designed to contain a cluster of infections found in some of the buildings.

Global cases rise to more than 12 million

The number of cases is triple that of severe influenza illnesses recorded annually, according to the World Health Organization.

Many hard-hit countries are easing lockdowns put in place to slow the spread of the virus, while others, such as China and Australia, implement another round of shutdowns in response to a resurgence in infections. Experts say alterations to work and social life could last until a vaccine is available.

Fijians urged to support local tourism

At the same time, Fijians are being encouraged to experience local tourism.

Operators are turning to domestic initiatives - developing family packages and products that can cater to the local market - according to Tourism Fiji chief executive Matthew Stoeckel.

"Domestic tourism does make up a relatively small proportion of operators' customers. However, it varies significantly from hotel to hotel," he said.

Melbourne begins new shutdown

Melbourne's five million residents will be barred from leaving home for six weeks, except for essential reasons.

Police say they are setting up a "ring of steel" around the city, with "checkpoints anytime and anywhere" to enforce the measures.

Borders between Victoria, of which Melbourne is the capital, and neighbouring states closed on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison paid tribute to Melburnians' resilience on Wednesday.

Brazil's President Bolsonaro tests positive for Covid-19

The pandemic has killed more than 65,000 people in Brazil.

The right-wing populist told a group of television reporters that he had developed symptoms at the weekend.

"It started on Sunday with a certain malaise and became worse throughout the day on Monday, feeling poorly, exhaustion, a bit of muscle ache, fever hit 38 (degrees Celsius)," he said.

Finishing the interview, he stepped back and removed his mask to reveal a smile, adding: "You can see from my face that I'm well and I'm calm."

Fiji confirms two new Covid-19 cases

One of them is the 37 year-old son of the man who was confirmed to have the coronavirus yesterday.

They returned on a repatriation flight from India on Saturday.

The other confirmed case is a 36 year-old woman who was on the same flight.

The acting permanent secretary of health, Dr James Fong, said the cases were caught in border quarantine and that there was no threat to the community.

"Fiji's defences against Covid-19 have been tried and tested with the first 18 cases and now with border quarantine cases," Dr Fong said.

CNMI college looks to test students enmasse for Covid-19

Northern Marianas College interim president Frankie Eliptico said they were looking at possibly requiring over 1,000 students to be tested.

However he said the plan was still in its early stages and it still had to be thoroughly thought out.

The college has around 1,300 students.

There are also around 150 staff, 90 percent of whom had already been tested for the coronavirus as it was required by the school administration.

Covid-19: No new cases in New Zealand

There was no media conference from the ministry today.

In a statement, the Ministry of Health said there were no new cases of the coronavirus, so total confirmed cases remained at 1178, with confirmed and probable cases combined totalling 1528.

The last time there were no new cases was on 19 June.

One person remained in Auckland City Hospital in a stable condition. There had been no recoveries since the previous day, the ministry reported, so the number of active cases was still 22.

EU to allow in visitors from 14 Covid-19 'safe' countries including New Zealand

The United States, Brazil and China are excluded.

Along with New Zealand on the current Covid-19 'safe list' are Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay.

The EU is ready to add China if the Chinese government offers a reciprocal travel deal for EU citizens.