Coronavirus: Latest global developments

·2-min read

These are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:

- New Oslo curbs fight UK variant -

Norway's capital Oslo will impose a partial lockdown, notably closing restaurants and non-essential businesses, from Tuesday until March 15 in the face of a surge of cases of the British variant of the coronavirus, the city's mayor says.

Authorities say the variant accounts for more than half of cases detected.

- South Africa to ease curbs -

President Cyril Ramaphosa says South Africa will start relaxing coronavirus restrictions after a "dramatic decline" in infections.

Effective midnight Sunday, most economic activity will resume as the country moves to rebuild its virus-shattered economy.

- EU set to clear J&J vaccine -

The vaccine by US drugmaker Johnson and Johnson is likely to be approved for use in the European Union in early March, a French minister says, adding that the EU hopes to receive 600 million doses of the vaccine by the end of June.

- Czechs turn to Sputnik V -

The hard-hit Czech Republic has requested a batch of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine while awaiting delayed EU-procured shots, the president says, adding that Prague will also consider seeking Chinese jabs.

- Israel jabs for West Bank Palestinians -

Israel confirms it will vaccinate against coronavirus Palestinians in the West Bank with permits to work in Jewish settlements in the occupied territory and inside Israel.

The territory is home to 2.8 million Palestinians, and rights groups have voiced outrage that Jewish West Bank residents are being vaccinated while their Palestinian neighbours are not.

- Germany secures border -

Germany declares France's Covid-battered Moselle region a high-risk area for virus variants, prompting tougher entry rules for visitors.

From Tuesday, travellers will need to show a fresh negative coronavirus test from the previous 48 hours.

- Vaccines for US children -

The United States could start vaccinating older children against Covid-19 by the fall and younger ones by year-end or early 2022, the White House's top pandemic advisor Anthony Fauci says.

- UK touts 20 million jab mark -

Britain says it has given more than 20 million people at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, with the rapid rollout providing hope in a country with Europe's highest death toll.

- First vaccines expected in Nigeria -

Nigeria will receive a first batch of nearly four million doses of vaccine through the global Covax programme on Tuesday, officials say.

Africa's most populous nation will become the third West African country to benefit from the scheme after Ghana and Ivory Coast.

- More than 2.5 million dead -

The virus has killed at least 2,527,287 people since it emerged in China in December 2019, according to an AFP tally compiled from official sources.

The United States is the worst-affected country with 512,346 deaths, followed by Brazil (254,221), Mexico (185,257) and India (157,051).