While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, July 13

Malaysian PM Muhyiddin congratulates PM Lee on general election results

Malaysia’s Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on Sunday called Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to congratulate him on the results of last Friday’s General Election.

In a statement on Sunday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the two leaders also had a good discussion on the strong and positive relationship between their countries.

Both prime ministers also agreed that their governments should continue to work together to overcome the common challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The Prime Ministers welcomed the steadfast progress that both sides have made in a wide-ranging slate of bilateral initiatives, including ongoing cross-border connectivity projects and the movement of people,” the ministry added.

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WHO reports record daily increase in global coronavirus cases, up over 230,000

The World Health Organisation reported a record increase in global coronavirus cases on Sunday, with the total rising by 230,370 in 24 hours.

The biggest increases were from the United States, Brazil, India and South Africa, according to a daily report. The previous WHO record for new cases was 228,102 on July 10. Deaths remained steady at about 5,000 a day.

Global coronavirus cases were approaching 13 million on Sunday, according to a Reuters tally, marking another milestone in the spread of the disease that has killed more than 565,000 people in seven months.

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Florida sets one-day record with over 15,000 new Covid-19 cases

Florida reported a record increase of more than 15,000 new cases of Covid-19 in 24 hours on Sunday, a day after Disney World in Orlando reopened and anti-mask activists held a rally at a nearby restaurant.

If Florida were a country, it would rank fourth in the world for the most new cases in a day behind the United States, Brazil and India, according to a Reuters analysis.

Florida’s daily increases in cases have already surpassed the highest daily tally reported by any European country during the height of the pandemic there.

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Full Covid-19 vaccine unlikely by 2021, take social distancing more seriously: French expert

There is little chance of a 100-per-cent effective coronavirus vaccine by 2021, a French expert warned Sunday (July 12), urging people to take social distancing measures more seriously.

“A vaccine is several years in development,” said epidemiologist Arnaud Fontanet, a member of the team of scientists advising the government on the crisis, speaking on BFMTV television.

“Of course, there is an unprecedented effort to develop a vaccine, but I would be very surprised if we had that was effective in 2021,” he added.

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South Africa re-imposes curfew, alcohol ban as virus cases spike

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday re-imposed a night curfew and suspended alcohol sales as coronavirus infections spiked and the health system risked being overwhelmed.

Coronavirus infection numbers had in recent days skyrocketed with at least 12,000 infections recorded daily, translating to around 500 infections every hour, severely straining healthcare resources.

South Africa is the worst-affected country on the continent with 276,242 registered cases including 4,079 deaths as of Sunday.

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