(Corrects opening paragraph to say the Red Cross has “trained”, not “dispatched”, volunteers)
Aug 10 (Reuters) – U.S. Health Secretary Alex Azar, during an official visit to Taiwan, said its response to the pandemic was among the “world’s best”, while the Red Cross said it has trained 43,000 volunteers to North Korea to help fight the coronavirus.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
* For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread, open https://tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7 in an external browser.
* For a U.S.-focused tracker with state-by-state and county map, open https://tmsnrt.rs/2w7hX9T in an external browser.
* Eikon users, see MacroVitals (cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?navid=1592404098) for a case tracker and summary of news.
* British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said reopening schools in September was a social, economic and moral imperative.
* France and Germany have quit talks on reforming the World Health Organization (WHO) in frustration at attempts by the United States to lead the negotiations, despite its decision to leave the WHO, three officials told Reuters.
* Two members of Atletico Madrid’s group set to travel to Portugal for the Champions League quarter-finals have tested positive for COVID-19.
* Parisians and tourists strolling along the banks of the River Seine or browsing open-air markets in the French capital must wear a face mask from Monday.
* U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said they were open to restarting COVID-19 aid talks, after weeks of failed negotiations prompted President Donald Trump to take executive actions.
* Cuba placed Havana back on a strict lockdown on Saturday following a rebound in cases.
* Brazil’s death toll from COVID-19 passed 100,000 on Saturday and continue to climb as most Brazilian cities reopen shops and dining even though the pandemic has yet to peak.
* Mexico has started getting people back to work again in August after losing 1.1 million formal jobs between March and July.
* Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said internal border closures were unlikely to lift before Christmas, as the country on Monday reported a record single-day rise in COVID-19 deaths.
* New Zealand marked 100 days without a domestic transmission of the coronavirus on Sunday, but warned against complacency.
* At least 10 people died when a huge fire broke out at a COVID-19 treatment and quarantine centre in the southeastern Indian city of Vijaywada early on Sunday.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Thousands of Israelis rallied outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s residence in Jerusalem on Saturday as anger mounted over corruption allegations and his handling of the coronavirus crisis.
* Algeria said on Saturday it will further ease its lockdown, including shortening an overnight curfew and lifting some travel curbs.
* Saudi Arabia will soon begin Phase III clinical trials on around 5,000 people for a COVID-19 vaccine developed by China’s CanSino Biologics Inc.
* Britain’s Hikma Pharmaceuticals said it started making Gilead’s COVID-19 treatment remdesivir under contract in Portugal, following Pfizer’s announcement of a multi-year agreement to make the antiviral.
* Researchers may have found a missing link in the coronavirus reproduction cycle that could potentially be targeted by drugs, while two new studies found people who had received non-COVID vaccines developed fewer or less serious infections.
ECONOMIC FALLOUT * China’s factory deflation eased in July, driven by a rise in global oil prices and as industrial activity climbed back towards pre-coronavirus levels. * Asian stocks held tight ranges as worries over U.S.-China tensions weighed on sentiment although signs of a recovery in industrial activity in the world’s second-largest economy limited losses. * Oil prices climbed, supported by Saudi optimism on Asian demand and an Iraqi pledge to deepen supply cuts, although uncertainty over a deal to shore up the U.S. economic recovery capped gains.
(Compiled by Ramakrishnan M; Editing by Arun Koyyur)