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India reports nearly 10,000 COVID19 cases in single-day

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(Last Updated On: June 10, 2020)

India recorded 9,985 cases in one day with 274 deaths, as the country is lifting the lockdown, the Indian Health Ministry reported Wednesday.

This comes as authorities are reopening restaurants, shopping malls, and religious places in most of its states after a more than two-month-old lockdown.

“The government has already partially restored train services and domestic flights and allowed shops and manufacturing to reopen,” the report added.

Subways, hotels, schools, and colleges, however, remain shuttered nationwide.

India has recorded 276,583 positive cases, the fifth highest in the world, with some 7,745 deaths.

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IOC rule against kneeling violates human rights

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(Last Updated On: June 15, 2020)

Global Athlete, an international athlete-led movement, declared that the IOC rule that bans competitors from kneeling in support of anti-racism protests violates human rights.

It comes as an International Olympic Committee (IOC) issued rule 50 guidelines in January saying it included taking a knee.

According to the rule’s guidelines, the unique nature of the Olympic Games enables athletes from all over the world to come together in peace and harmony.

The rule states, “We believe that the example we set by competing with the world’s best while living in harmony in the Olympic Village is a uniquely positive message to send to an increasingly divided world. This is why it is important, on both a personal and a global level, that we keep the venues, the Olympic Village, and the podium neutral and free from any form of political, religious, or ethnic demonstrations.”

Global Athlete said this was “a clear breach of human rights” and demanded a change in the regulation.

This comes amid protests following the death of George Floyd, a black American who died in police custody in Minneapolis, USA.

The IOC has said athletes will decide how best to support the core Olympic values “in a dignified way”.

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Afghanistan to resume international flights

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(Last Updated On: June 15, 2020)

The Afghanistan Civil Aviation Authority has said that the international flights will resume soon keeping health measures strictly in view.

In a statement, the authority said that in order to prevent the outbreak of the Coronavirus, the terminal halls in Kabul, Herat, Kandahar, and Mazar-e-Sharif international airports have been marked to help passengers keep a distance.

It is noteworthy that with the outbreak of the Coronavirus, flights to/from most countries around the globe, including Afghanistan, have been on hold.

Recently, with a decline in the spread of the virus, some countries have gradually resumed their flights.

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Locusts attack along India-Pakistan border threatening food security

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(Last Updated On: May 25, 2020)

There has been an increased risk along both sides of the India-Pakistan border, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) said Friday.

FAO, in its Friday release, warned, “Despite control operations, recent heavy rains have created ideal conditions for the pest’s reproduction in several countries. Young juveniles will become voracious adults in June just as farmers begin to harvest, compounding an already bleak food security situation.”

Reports indicate that India has reached out to Pakistan to counter a locust invasion which threatens to destroy crops and undermine food security in the south and southwest Asia already threatened by the COVID19 pandemic.

According to Indian news outlets, swarms of desert locusts swept Jaipur on Monday as the insect onslaught spread wider to parts of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh; while Gujarat and Punjab have warned their farmers of locust attacks.

This is the second round of locust attack in India, the first one having occurred during December-February.

Locust attacks in 12 countries, including Pakistan, Iran, and ten nations in Africa, have damaged crops over millions of hectares.

The World Bank has set up a $500 million program to help countries in Africa and the Middle East combat the impact of locusts.

It is noteworthy that the Locusts can destroy standing crops and devastate livelihoods of people – The desert locust is considered the most destructive migratory pest in the world and a single swarm covering 1 square kilometer can contain up to 80 million locusts.

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