Coronavirus has infected more than 181.7 million people and has claimed over 3.9 million lives. Here are the latest Covid-related developments for June 27:

Save Our Scene, a campaign group for the music and hospitality sectors that organised the protest, says lockdown curbs should end immediately.
Save Our Scene, a campaign group for the music and hospitality sectors that organised the protest, says lockdown curbs should end immediately. (Reuters)

Sunday, June 27

Show must go on, say dancing protesters urging Britain to fully reopen

Hundreds of people have danced and blown whistles in time to dance music on the streets of central London, part of a protest against coronavirus restrictions that have pummelled the entertainment industry, particularly nightclubs.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson hopes to remove the remaining restrictions on July 19 after being forced to postpone a reopening this month. 

But Save Our Scene, a campaign group for the music and hospitality sectors that organised the protest, says lockdown curbs should end immediately.

Turkey administers over 47.2M vaccine shots

Turkey has administered over 47.2 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines since it launched a mass vaccination campaign in mid-January, according to official figures.

More than 32.4 million people have received their first doses, while over 14.8 million have been fully vaccinated, showed the Health Ministry count.

The ministry data also showed that over the last week alone more than 5.7 million doses of Covid jabs were administered.

It also confirmed 4,883 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, including 390 symptomatic patients.

Turkey's overall case tally is now over 5.4 million, while the nationwide death toll has reached 49,576 with 52 new fatalities.

As many as 5,937 more patients won the battle against the virus, taking the number of recoveries past 5.2 million.

Over 60.1 million coronavirus tests have been done to date.

The latest figures put the number of Covid-19 patients in critical condition at 736.

The country's Health Minister Fahrettin Koca on Twitter also announced the number of vaccines administered across the country while adding that at least 54 percent of adults over 18 in Turkey vaccinated with at least a single dose of a Covid jab.

North Macedonia gets 500,000 doses of Sinovac vaccines

North Macedonia has received a shipment of 500,000 doses of Chinese Sinovac vaccines that will allow authorities to continue mass immunisation in the country, which has slowed over the past two weeks because of vaccine shortages.

The vaccine shipments arrived at the country’s main airport on two planes.

North Macedonia received another shipment of more than 100,000 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines through the COVAX system on Saturday.

Luxembourg PM tests positive for Covid

Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel is self-isolating for 10 days after testing positive for Covid shortly after a European Union summit, his office has said.

But none of the other 26 EU leaders who attended the Brussels summit Thursday and Friday is considered a contact case, a statement said.

Under the rules in Luxembourg for containing the spread of the virus, close contact with a Covid sufferer is defined as spending more than 15 minutes with them at a distance of less than six feet without a mask.

A spokeswoman for Bettel said he had respected the rules during the summit.

"No head of state or government figures on the list of the prime minister's close contacts," she added. 

Romania's capital marks a day without new cases

Romania's capital did not record any new coronavirus cases, officials have said.

Just a few months ago, Bucharest’s intensive care units were stretched to maximum capacity as its 14-day accumulative infection rate topped 7 per 1,000 inhabitants. Now the capital’s infection rate — the same as the country as a whole — stands at just 0.05 per 1,000 inhabitants.

“Bucharest has the highest vaccination rate in the country,” Prime Minister Florin Citu wrote online on Sunday. “Also in Bucharest, in the last 24 hours we had 0 (!!!) infected people with SARS-COV2 . Vaccination is the only solution to overcome the pandemic. It is that simple!”

Britain records 14,876 new cases, 11 deaths

Britain has recorded 14,876 new coronavirus infections, down from 18,270 a day earlier, and 11 deaths, also lower than the 23 reported on Saturday, official data showed.

Daily positive cases have been rising in Britain for a month but a rapid vaccination programme appears to have weakened the link between infections and deaths, with daily fatalities remaining around 20 or lower.

The data also showed that 84.1% of adults had had a first dose of the vaccine and 61.6% had had two. 

Italy reports 14 deaths, 782 new cases

Italy has reported 14 coronavirus-related deaths, down from 40 the day before, the health ministry has said, while the daily tally of new infections declined to 782 from 838.

Italy has registered 127,472 deaths linked to Covid-19 since its outbreak emerged in February last year, the second-highest toll in Europe after Britain and the eighth-highest in the world.

The number of patients in hospital with Covid-19 - not including those in intensive care - stood at 1,743 on Sunday, down from 1,771 a day earlier.

There were 10 new admissions to intensive care units, up from 9 on Saturday.

The total number of patients in intensive care fell to 294 from 298.

Some 138,391 tests for Covid-19 were carried out in the past day, compared with a previous 224,493, the health ministry said. 

Tokyo governor rests amid worries over Olympics

Tokyo’s governor, who has taken time off since last week due to severe fatigue, needs to rest several more days this week, the metropolitan government has said, as experts warn a resurgence of the infections less than a month before the capital city hosts the Olympics.

Governor Yuriko Koike has been resting since last Wednesday due to severe fatigue. She was to rest until Sunday but Tokyo metropolitan officials said she will be off several more days. She has been deeply involved with preparations for the Olympics and Paralympics as well as leading the capital’s coronavirus response.

Officials refused to confirm media reports that Koike has been hospitalised.

Britain's new health minister targets 'return to normal'

Britain's new Health Minister Sajid Javid has said his priority was to oversee a return to normal from the Covid-19 pandemic, and praised his predecessor Matt Hancock who was forced to resign after breaking social-distancing rules.

Javid, a former finance minister, starts his new role with a pressing to-do list - coronavirus cases are rising, hospitals are warning of a growing backlog of people needing care and staff are battling burn-out in their fight against the disease.

"We are still in a pandemic, and I want to see that come to an end as soon as possible, and that will be my most immediate priority to see that we can return to normal as soon and as quickly as possible," he told BBC News.

Javid said later: "Thanks to the fantastic efforts of our NHS (National Health Service) and social care staff who work tirelessly every day, and our phenomenal vaccination programme, we have made enormous progress in the battle against this dreadful disease." 

Palestine confirms cases of Delta strain of coronavirus

Palestinian health authorities have confirmed the first two infections from the Delta coronavirus variant.

Health Minister Mai al Kaila said in a statement that two girls in the occupied West Bank cities of Qalqilya and Salfit who recently returned from the United Arab Emirates had tested positive for the new strain.

She said people who came in contact with the two girls have been quarantined.

Al Kila warned that the Delta variant “is the most infectious variant among all other coronavirus strains.”

Palestinian health authorities have so far recorded 342,562 cases of coronavirus, including 3,825 deaths, in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip.

According to the Health Ministry, a total of 482,695 people have been vaccinated against Covid-19.

UK vaccines have weakened link between infections, death, says scientist

Britain's mass Covid-19 vaccination campaign has weakened the link between infections and deaths but it has not yet been completely broken, the head of a scientific advisory body to the government has said.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is hoping to lift most remaining coronavirus restrictions on July 19 after being forced to postpone any further easing this month because of a growing number of cases largely from the more infectious Delta variant.

Peter Horby, chair of the government's New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG), told the BBC's "Andrew Marr Show" that Britain was seeing a "much lower level of hospitalisation".

He was asked if there was enough data to say vaccinations had broken the link between the virus and serious illness and death.

"They've certainly weakened the link," Horby said of the vaccination programme, which has given a first dose to more than 80% of the adult population and a second dose to more than 60%, according to official data.

"We're definitely seeing increasing infection rates, but what we're seeing is a much lower level of hospitalisation, so that link is really, really much weaker which is really fantastic but it's not completely broken."

Germany expects faster Moderna Covid-19 vaccine deliveries

Germany expects drugmaker Moderna Inc to deliver Covid-19 vaccines faster than expected, helping it ramp up vaccinations in coming months, the Health Ministry has said.

Moderna will increase its deliveries to 1.33 million doses a week in July from 733,000 previously expected, raising the figure to 2.57 million a week in August and 2.95 million a week in September, the ministry said.

Moderna said last week it hopes to be able to deliver the Covid-19 vaccines it has promised to Germany more quickly than originally planned, without giving figures.

Indonesia reports record high daily cases 

Indonesia has recorded its biggest daily increase in coronavirus infections with 21,342 cases on Sunday, taking the total tally to 2,115,304, according to data from the country’s Covid-19 task force.

The data also showed 409 new deaths overnight, taking the total to 57,138.

Indonesia has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in Southeast Asia. 

Russia records 20,538 new cases, 599 deaths

Russia has reported 20,538 new cases, taking the official national tally since the pandemic began to 5,451,291.

The government task force said 599 people had died during the past 24 hours, pushing the national death toll to 133,282.

The federal statistics agency has kept a separate count and has said Russia recorded around 270,000 deaths from April 2020 to April 2021.

Abu Dhabi app removes vaccine option for visitors

Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, has removed an option for visitors to apply for vaccines from a dedicated mobile app, although a hotline run by Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA) last week said tourists were eligible.

SEHA, which operates the emirate's health infrastructure, had said that visitors with visas issued by Abu Dhabi and passport holders eligible for tourist visas upon entry can book free vaccines, and its app had shown a "visitor" function.

China's tally of administered vaccine doses reached 1.165 bln by June 26

China had administered about 1.165 billion doses of vaccines by June 26, data from the National Health Commission showed on Sunday.

New Zealand extends alert level in capital

New Zealand will extend the alert level in the capital Wellington for two days, as authorities said there is still a risk from an Australian tourist who tested positive for the coronavirus after visiting the city last weekend.

Wellington, which moved to Alert Level 2 on Wednesday, will now remain at that level until Tuesday.

"It's clear that we are not out of the woods yet," Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins told a news briefing. "More testing and more results are required in order for us to feel confident in making a decision to lower alert levels."

The measure means social distancing rules will be in place across the city, but offices, schools and businesses may remain open.

New Zealand halted quarantine-free travel from Australia on Saturday for three days, saying there were too many cases and outbreaks.

Malaysia's lockdown to be extended - PM

Malaysia will extend a national lockdown beyond Monday to curb the spread of the virus, state news agency Bernama reported, citing Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.

Lockdown measures were set to end on Monday. But Muhyiddin said they will not be eased until daily cases fell below 4,000, Bernama said.

Malaysia reported 5,803 cases on Saturday. 

Millions in Sydney wake to lockdown

Millions of Sydney residents have woken to the first full day of a two-week coronavirus lockdown, as Australia tried to contain an outbreak of the highly contagious Delta variant.

Restaurants, bars and cafes were shuttered after stay-at-home orders for central neighbourhoods were extended across Sydney and to the coastal and mountainous regions surrounding the sprawling city.

Authorities had initially imposed movement restrictions on only those in Sydney's business district and affluent eastern suburbs, but the fast spread of cases in other areas saw the more drastic step introduced Saturday evening.

Germany's confirmed cases rise by 538 - RKI

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany has increased by 538 to 3,726,710, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Sunday. 

The reported death toll rose by eight to 90,754, the tally showed. 

China reports 14 new cases vs 25 the day before

China has reported 14 new cases in the mainland, down from 25 a day earlier, the health authority said.

All of the new infections were imported, the National Health Commission said in a statement on Sunday. There were no new deaths.

Mexico reports 5,051 new cases, 175 additional deaths

Mexico's health ministry has reported 5,051 new confirmed cases in the country and 175 more fatalities, bringing the totals to 2,503,408 infections and 232,521 deaths. 

Brazil reports 64,134 new coronavirus cases, 1,593 deaths

Brazil has reported 64,134 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the past 24 hours, along with 1,593 deaths from Covid-19, according to the Health Ministry.

Brazil has registered more than 18.3 million cases since the pandemic began, while the official death toll has risen to 512,735.

Thailand announces new restrictions in Bangkok, other provinces

Thailand announced new restrictions centred around its capital in a bid to tackle the country's worst coronavirus outbreak.

The new measures, which will be implemented for 30 days from Monday, include a ban on restaurant dine-ins in Bangkok, the capital, and five surrounding provinces, according to a document published in the country's royal gazette.

Shopping malls in Bangkok and the five provinces must be closed by 9 PM, and parties or celebrations, or activities involving a gathering of more than 20 people will be banned for the same duration, the document said.

Tunisia reports daily record of 4,664 cases

Tunisia has recorded 4,664 new confirmed coronavirus cases, the Health Ministry said, a daily record since the start of the pandemic last year.

Ninety more deaths were reported, taking the death toll to more than 14,000, the ministry added.

The total number of cases has climbed to around 403,493.

Tunisia is seeing a significant increase in Covid-19 cases, with intensive care wards almost full, health authorities said, adding the situation was catastrophic.
Covid deaths cross 14,000 mark in Bangladesh

Bangladesh registered 77 additional deaths from the coronavirus, taking the death toll to 14,053 with new hotspots outside the capital, Dhaka, particularly in border districts along India.

A total of 4,334 new infections were recorded, which took the caseload to 813,138, with the daily positivity rate of 22.50 percent, according to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).

The National Technical Advisory Committee on Covid-19 has already suggested imposing a 14-day complete shutdown as the Delta variant has already spread across Bangladesh, certainly in border districts.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies