ROME -- Italian Health Minister Roberto Speranza on Saturday signed an order banning direct flights to Italy from Brazil after a new variant of the coronavirus was identified in four passengers arriving from that country.
"I signed an order blocking flights departing from Brazil, and forbidding entry into Italy to anyone who has traveled through Brazil over the past 14 days," Speranza wrote in a statement.
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HONG KONG -- Paul Chan, financial secretary of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government, said here on Sunday that the jobless rate in Hong Kong will climb further as businesses and workers are still struggling amid the COVID-19 epidemic.
Chan said in an online article that the unemployment rate during the October-December period will continue to spike and even surpass the 16-year high, a level reached recently.
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MANILA -- Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Philippine Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin vowed here Saturday to strengthen bilateral cooperation on anti-pandemic efforts and economic recovery.
While meeting with Locsin, Wang said under the strategic guidance of the leaders of the two countries, the bilateral relations have withstood various tests, and the friendship between the two peoples have been strengthened in jointly combatting the COVID-19 pandemic.
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LUSAKA -- China has continuously provided support to Africa aimed at fighting COVID-19 at a time when the continent needed it the most, Zambian experts have said.
"When we started off, the capacity of the country was very low in terms of COVID-19 testing. But with contributions from China, the capacity obviously increased and we were able to carry out a lot of tests," said Onesmus Munyati, Dean of the School of Natural Sciences at the University of Zambia.
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CAIRO -- Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi said on Saturday that his country's rejection of foreign military interference in Libya and its designation of Libya's Sirte and Jufra as red lines helped preserve the political path of the Libyan crisis.
Sisi's remarks came during his meeting with Adel Abdul-Rahman al-Asoumi, speaker of the Cairo-based Arab Parliament affiliated with the Arab League, said the Egyptian presidency.