Travel bans accelerated worldwide as coronavirus spread worsens, markets plunge

People around the world became increasingly closed off from one another Thursday as sweeping travel bans accelerated, walling regions apart as a viral pandemic unfolds and financial markets plunge. It was an outbreak moving, at once, both glacially and explosively, with a virus first detected three months ago in China creeping across borders and producing eruptive outbreaks that have crippled […]

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Norway to close all schools as coronavirus spread: NTB news agency

OSLO (Reuters) – Norway will announce the closure of all kindergartens and schools to curb the spread of the coronavirus, following a similar step by neighboring Denmark, news agency NTB reported on Thursday, citing unnamed sources. Since Norway’s first case of the virus was confirmed on Feb. 26, the total number of infected people had risen to 621 as of […]

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Trump stops Europe flights, China says coronavirus could end by June

BEIJING/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Travelers scrambled to rebook flights and markets reeled on Thursday after U.S. President Donald Trump imposed sweeping restrictions on travel from Europe, hitting battered airlines and heightening global alarm over the coronavirus. However, China, where the disease originated, said its epidemic had peaked and the global spread could be over by June if other nations applied similarly […]

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Italian businesses count heavy cost of coronavirus lockdown

MILAN/ROME (Reuters) – Even if Italy’s draconian measures to stop the spread of coronavirus prove successful, they will leave an economy in tatters, with small and medium-sized businesses the hardest hit. Responding to the spread of the disease in Europe’s worst affected country, the government has banned all non-essential travel and public gatherings until April 3 and closed schools and […]

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Coronavirus: Italy closes shops and restaurants to limit spread of COVID-19

Italy has shut all shops except food stores, pharmacies and stores selling “essential” items, to try and stop the spread of COVID-19. All restaurants and bars have also been closed as have hairdressers and beauty salons, although restaurants can still make home deliveries. There have been more than 800 deaths in Italy and on Wednesday there were more than 2,000 […]

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WHO's Tedros urges world to 'double down' against virus pandemic

GENEVA (Reuters) – The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) urged all countries on Thursday to “double down” in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, speaking to diplomats in Geneva a day after characterizing COVID-19 as a pandemic, also said: “Describing this as a pandemic does not mean that countries should give up. The idea that […]

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Merkel's party postpones congress to choose new leader due to coronavirus

BERLIN (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) have postponed a conference scheduled for April 25 in Berlin to choose a new party leader due to the coronavirus and said it would reschedule as soon as the epidemic allowed. The delay scuppers any hope of a quick resolution to the power struggle within the party after leader Annegret […]

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Coronavirus could force Labour leader result to be announced behind closed doors

The coronavirus outbreak could force Labour's leadership result to be announced behind closed doors, it's been revealed. Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell said he "wouldn't be surprised" if the special event in London – which was due to be attended by members and grandees – is replaced with a broadcast on TV or social media. "We'll follow exactly whatever we're advised," […]

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