UK's government disapproval, Germany's protests: COVID-19 Daily bulletin
Updated 00:50, 02-Aug-2020
Aden-Jay Wood


- A member of the UK's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) has said England may have to consider closing its pubs in order to reopen schools in September. Graham Medley added: "I think we're in a situation whereby most people think that opening schools is a priority for the health and wellbeing of children and that when we do that we are going to reconnect lots of households."

- The Stepping Hill Hospital in north-west England has said it is to begin the rapid mass testing of all of its staff to control the spread of the virus

- Thousands of people took to the streets of Germany's capital of Berlin to demonstrate against the government's latest measures. Some held up signs which read "Corona, false alarm", "We are being forced to wear a muzzle", "Natural defence instead of vaccination" and "End the corona panic – bring fundamental rights back”.

- Scotland's Edinburgh Castle has reopened to visitors for the first time in months on Saturday. The castle was shut for its longest period since World War two and has long been one of Scotland's most popular tourist attractions.

- Almost half of the UK disapproves of the government's handling of the pandemic according to a poll carried out by the Opinium. 48 percent of people disapproved, whilst only 30 percent approved of its handling. Over 50 percent of people (51 percent) believe the country is coming out of lockdown too quickly, while 11 percent believe it is coming out too slowly.

- Switzerland marked its national day in an unusual way on Friday night, with a pyrotechnic display on a section of the Swiss alps. The national day marks the foundation of Switzerland in 1291.

- As Germany's infection rate rises, its economy minister Peter Altmaier has said he wants stricter penalties for those who break the COVID-19 regulations. "Anyone who deliberately endangers others must expect that this will have serious consequences for him," He added.

- France's COVID-19 daily cases have topped 1,300 for the third consecutive day. Health experts say 21 percent of the new clusters have been as a result of families getting together for private gatherings after months apart from each other. 

- Poland reported its highest new daily infections since the pandemic began for the third day in a row on Saturday, with 656 new infections confirmed, bringing the overall total to 46,346. 

- Russia is preparing to start a mass vaccination campaign against COVID-19 in October according to the country's health minister Mikhail Murashko.

- From Saturday morning, anyone arriving in France from one of 12 countries, including Serbia, Brazil, South Korea and Turkey, will be required to visit a testing center before leaving the airport, unless they can provide a negative test result carried out 72 hours before departure.

- Irish Airline Ryanair has said it has started legal proceedings against Ireland against the travel restrictions that has meant people arriving into the country from all but 15 countries, would have to quarantine.



Thousands took to the streets of Berlin to demonstrate against the government's latest COVID-19 measures. /AFP

Thousands took to the streets of Berlin to demonstrate against the government's latest COVID-19 measures. /AFP

We have begun a process of rapid staff testing for Covid-19 to strengthen our efforts to prevent and control the spread of the infection across Stepping Hill Hospital
 -  Spokesperson, Stepping Hill Hospital, north-west England


Nawied Jabarkhyl in London

This weekend was supposed to see a further easing of coronavirus lockdown measures in England. 

Instead, the likes of casinos, bowling alleys and indoor theatres will have to wait until at least the middle of August before they can reopen their doors. 

It's a sign of growing concern about a resurgence in COVID-19 cases that has seen parts of the country go back into some form of lockdown.

Meanwhile, 2.2 million of the highest risk people in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland are now allowed to leave their homes and go to work. 

The so-called "vulnerable" parts of society were told to self-isolate in late-March to protect themselves from the virus.


As of Saturday morning, people landing in France from 12 countries, which Include South Korea, Serbia, Algeria, Brazil and Turkey, must visit one of France's new airport testing facilities, unless they are able to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test carried out 72 hours before their departure time.

The testing center will record the visitors contact details, then carry out the test by inserting a swab into their nasal passage.

Travelers will then be allowed to continue with their journey. They will be informed of their test results by public health workers between 24 and 48 hours later.



Isobel Ewing in Budapest

Most Hungarian universities are moving education at least partially online, due to the risk of a possible second wave of the coronavirus.

Semmelweis University is adopting a hybrid system whereby larger lectures are moving completely online, while smaller seminars and group discussions will be in person.

Some restrictions will be in place to reduce the risk of transmitting the virus at on-site events, for example, inside all buildings, students as well as teachers and staff are required to wear face masks.

Furthermore, first year students must show a negative PCR test result before enrolling and starting to attend on-site programs.

Some universities, however, have decided to continue in-person education until official government regulation requires otherwise.

The Budapest University of Technology and Economics (BME) continues education in person, with some protective measures in place.

These include starting lectures after 08:30am so students avoid rush hour on public transport, and the wearing of face masks is also compulsory.




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