French Polynesia detects new Covid-19 variants

The first case was discovered two weeks ago, and another two cases were discovered last week, however, the total number of cases over the territory is still unknown.

Local Covid-19 health expert Henri Pierre Mallet told La Premiere that this new variant might mean a return to a similar situation to previous outbreaks.

"It's more contagious, that's why we are having such an increase.

Covid strikes All Blacks again with Will Jordan out of Ireland test

Head coach Ian Foster, assistant coaches John Plumtree and midfielders David Havili and Jack Goodhue are already isolating after contracting the virus.

First-five Richie Mo'unga missed Tuesday's training with a stomach bug, but has tested negative for Covid.

Former Ireland coach Joe Schmidt has been called in to help the All Blacks prepare for Saturday's test at a sold out Eden Park.

The quartet are isolating and it's understood they won't re-join the team before Saturday's test at a sold out Eden Park.

Covid-19 cases continue to decline Tonga

The Ministry of Health reported that only 234 active cases were recorded as of June 14.

Minister of Health, Dr Saia Piukala said there were only 36 new positive cases as of 14 June, which is satisfactory.

“Since 1 February the total positive cases stood at 12,079. Of the current 234 active cases in the community the majority are in Tongatapu with 208,  Vavau 12 and in Ha’apai 14.”

"Although our COVID cases continues to be on a satisfactory level that is not a reason for us to be complacent. We must still need to ensure our safety," he said.

Sir Mick Jagger tests positive for Covid

The band said the show at the Johan Cruijff Arena would be rescheduled and that they were "deeply sorry".

Sir Mick, 78, added in a message to fans: "Thank you for your patience and understanding."

The band are currently on their Sixty tour, where they had planned to play 14 shows in 10 European countries.

Tickets for the original show will be honoured for the new date once the show is postponed.

The Stones had already played three of their tour dates, including one in the UK at Anfield in Liverpool.

Beijing tests millions to stem Covid-19 cluster linked to 24-hour bar

The outbreak of 228 cases linked to the Heaven Supermarket Bar, which had just reopened as restrictions in Beijing eased last week, highlights how hard it will be for China to make a success of its "zero Covid" policy as much of the rest of the world opts to learn how to live with the virus.

The re-emergence of infections is also raising new concerns about the outlook for the world's second largest economy. China is only just shaking off a heavy blow from a long lockdown in Shanghai - its most populous city and commercial nerve centre - that also disrupted global supply chains.

Tonga Covid-19 State of Emergency extended

Prime Minister Hu'akavameiliku announced the extension for another month, from Sunday, 5 June until Sunday 3 July.

The declaration said an emergency continues due to the impact of the HungaTonga HungaHaapai volcanic eruption that triggered a tsunami in January this year that caused loss of lives and damage to properties and environment.

The emergency powers will be applied to all land and sea areas of the island nation.


Photo file  Caption: Nuku'alofa 


Shanghai lockdown: China eases Covid restrictions after two months

At midnight local time (16:00 GMT Tuesday), restrictions were relaxed to allow most people to move freely around the city of some 25 million people.

But at least 650,000 residents will remain confined to their homes.

China's overall policy of "zero Covid" remains in place and people catching Covid face quarantine or hospital.

Their close contacts also face the prospect of removal to quarantine and the area immediately around where they live being locked down again.

Covid tracing app for Tonga

The Minister of Health, Saia Piukala, said the new app 'Tonga 'a Tautolu' would be available to download this week.

Tonga's Ministry of Health reports there are 871 active cases.

There have been 11 Covid deaths since the outbreak started.

Ninety one percent of the population over 12 has been double vaccinated and 58 percent has been boosted.


Tonga Health Ministry ready to use contact tracing app

“We are ready now to have members of the public download contact tracing app to prepare ourselves as there are now more variants coming out around the globe. This app will help us in tracing those who might be positive and the plan is to have this working by next (this) week,” Dr Piukala said at a press conference.

“We know that the local cases are dropping but this will be useful for us as we continue to move forward with Covid-19.”

New Caledonia's Covid rates hit nearly 300

The latest figure, covering the past week, brings the total number of cases since September to 61,049.

The incidence of the virus is slightly higher than a month ago but down sharply since the peak in February.

The death toll remains at 312 - all of them died after the Delta variant entered the community in September.

The official update makes no mention of any Covid-19 patient still in hospital care.

Most pandemic-related restrictions have been lifted, but vaccinated travellers must still take a test two days after arrival.