The number of confirmed coronavirus infections in both Mexico and Peru has risen to 500,000, Lima reports the highest death rate in Latin America.
- The UK said all people from France and the Netherlands will be quarantined for 14 days starting Saturday, prompting Paris to warn of a “reciprocity measure”.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said “people should not be afraid of food, or food packaging” because there is “no evidence” that coronavirus is spread through food or the food chain.
According to Johns Hopkins University, worldwide coronavirus infections have surpassed 20.7 million. More than 12.9 million people have recovered and more than 752,000 people have died.
Here are the latest updates:
Friday, August 14
2:00 PM GMT – North Korea proceeds to block virus at border town
Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s supreme leader, lifted an embargo in a major city near the border with South Korea, where thousands of people have been quarantined for weeks for concerns about the coronavirus, according to state media.
North Korea’s central news agency (KCNA) said Kim made the decision during a meeting of the ruling party on Thursday. The North Korean leader said clearly after three weeks the virus situation in Kaesong had stabilized and expressed gratitude to the people for cooperating with the containment.
Kim also affirmed North Korea would close its borders and refuse any outside help as Pyongyang carries out an active anti-virus campaign and rebuilds thousands of homes, roads and bridges damaged by heavy rain and flooding in recent weeks.
01:45 GMT – Peru exceeds 500,000 cases
According to data from the Ministry of Health, Peru passed half a million coronavirus infections on Thursday and currently has the highest mortality rate in Latin America.
The Andean country has 507,996 confirmed cases and 25,648 related deaths. Peru’s death rate is 78.6 per 100,000, according to a Reuters census, a figure higher than that of its neighbors in the severely affected region, Chile and Brazil.
President Martin Vizcarra blamed the recent spike in infectious diseases on the rise in social and sporting events as well as public lax attitudes.
“There has been too much faith in one part of the population,” Vizcarra said. “Learn from history, correct mistakes and now we unite despite the differences in some of the decisions made.”
On Wednesday, Vizcarra banned family gatherings, reinstated Sunday curfew, and extended the lockdown to five other regions of the country as figures reveal a 75% increase in child infections children and teenagers.
01:37 GMT – Load case of Mexico reaches 500,000
Mexico’s Ministry of Health reported 7,371 newly confirmed coronavirus infections and 627 other deaths, bringing the total in the country to 505,751 and 55,293 deaths.
The government says the number of people infected are likely to be significantly higher than confirmed cases.
01:10 GMT – The governor of Venezuela’s capital district dies of COVID-19
Dario Vivas, Venezuelan capital district governor of Caracas and a strong ally of President Nicolas Maduro, passed away on Thursday because COVID-19 was at the age of 70, officials said.
Vivas, a senior member of the ruling socialist party, told Twitter on July 19 that he had tested positive for the new coronavirus and is currently isolating himself.
“He died fighting … taking care of his health and all of us in this uphill battle against this Covid-19 pandemic,” Vice President Delcy Rodriguez wrote on Twitter.
Vivas is the highest-ranking Venezuelan government official who died of the virus, although some people gave positive results.
00:48 GMT – France warned of the ‘reciprocity measure’ for the UK’s quarantine move
Clement Beaune, France’s minister in charge of European affairs, said the UK’s decision to impose a 14-day quarantine order on all people from France is something that “we are sorry and will leading to a measure of reciprocity “.
Beaune said on France’s Twitter “hope a return to normal as soon as possible”.
On Thursday, France recorded 2,669 new coronavirus infections, the highest daily number since May.
00:32 GMT – France, Netherlands are added to the quarantine list of Great Britain
Transport Minister Grant Shapps said the UK would impose a 14-day quarantine measure for all passengers from France, the Netherlands, Malta and three other countries.
“The data shows we need to remove France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks & Caicos & Aruba from our #coronavirus Travel Corridor list to keep infection rates DOWN,” Shapps said on Twitter.
“If you arrive in the UK after 4pm on Saturday from these destinations, you will have to quarantine yourself for 14 days.”
Data shows we need to remove France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks & Caicos & Aruba from our #coronavirus Travel Corridor list to keep infection rates DOWN. If you arrive in the UK after 4pm Saturday from these destinations, you will have to quarantine yourself for 14 days.
– Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP (@grantshapps) August 13, 2020
00:18 GMT – Trump attacked Biden when calling for a mask trust
US President Donald Trump has assaulted his rival, Joe Biden, for calling on governors to be forced to cover his face in public for the next three months.
“We don’t have to put the full weight of the federal government down on those who are law-abiding Americans to achieve this goal,” Trump said.
“I trust the American people and their governors a lot. I trust the American people. And the governors want to do the right thing to make smart decisions. And Joe doesn’t.”
Earlier, on Thursday, Biden, the presidential candidate believed to be Democratic Party, called for a nationwide masked authorization, citing health experts’ predictions that this could be saving 40,000 lives in the next 3 months.
Melting on the mask in the midst of a viral outbreak of coronavirus (1:27)
Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m Zaheena Rasheed from Male, Maldives.
For all the major developments from yesterday, August 13, please visit here.