Indian Army to deploy a team to Afghanistan to help with coronavirus fight

The Khaama Press | 22nd April

 

The Indian Army is readying a team which is expected to be deployed to Afghanistan in a bid to help with the fight against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the country.

Official sources said that similar teams are being prepared for the deployment to Sri Lanka, Baghladesh and Bhuttan.

This comes as the Indian Army sent a team to Maldives last month to help the island nation set up coronavirus testing laboratories and train local medical professionals to fight the pandemic.

COVID-19: Shipment of HCQ tablets from India arrive in Maldives

Maldives Times | 23rd April

 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs accepted a shipment of Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) tablets from India, as part of the collaborative effort between the governments in regards to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

On behalf of the Maldivian government, Ministry of Foreign Affairs thanked the government of India and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for their assistance.

Arriving via the Maldives’ national carrier ‘Maldivian’, the incoming flight carried a total of 50,000 tablets as free-aid.

India provides 23 tonnes of medicines to Nepal

The Himalayan Times | 23rd April

 

As part of the ongoing bilateral cooperation between Nepal and India to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, Ambassador of India to Nepal Vinay Mohan Kwatra handed over 23 tonnes of medicines to Minister of Health and Population Bhanubhakta Dhakal.

The consignment, a gift from the people of India to the people of Nepal, includes 8.25 lakh doses of essential medicines, including 3.2 lakh doses of Paracetamol and 2.5 lakh doses of Hydroxychloroquine.

 

AFGHANISTAN

 
Coronavirus cases climb to 1226 in Afghanistan as authorities record 50 new cases

The Khaama Press | 23rd April

The Afghan authorities recorded 50 new positive cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Afghanistan in the past 24 hours, the Ministry of Public Health said.

Ferozuddin Feroz, the Minister of Public Health, confirmed that the authorities recorded 50 new positive cases across the country in the past 24 hours.

According to Public Health Ministry, the new cases increase the total number of COVID-19 positive cases to 1,226 across the country.

 

Parliament calls for ceasefire during Ramadan

Afghanistan Times | 22nd April

The parliament calls on Taliban to hold a cease fire in the holy month of Ramadan expected to begin, so that people feel safe and secure at least during the month of worship, despite the deadly Corona virus threatens lives across the world.“We call on the opposition of the government to observe general cease fire to prevent bloodshed during the month of Ramadan,” lawmaker, Mirza Khan Katawazi said.
He emphasized that the people of Afghanistan deserve to worship without the fear of war.


 

BANGLADESH

 

Dhaka urges OIC to protect migrant workers amid COVID-19

Prothom Alo | 22nd April

Bangladesh urged the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to adopt holistic approach for protecting migrant workers residing in OIC member states especially in the Middle East amid COVID-19 pandemic that sent global economy into tailspin, reports BSS.

 

Coronavirus: Govt planning to resume public transport in phases

Dhaka Tribune | 23rd April

The government is planning to resume public transport services in phases after evaluating the situation of the coronavirus outbreak in the country.

The announcement was through a circular, issued by the Ministry of Public Administration, declaring the extension of the ongoing general holiday to May 5.

The circular also said vehicles and employees of emergency services, including utility services like electricity, water, gas and internet, among others, will remain out of the purview of the general holiday.

 

Bangladesh loses Tk 33bn daily for lockdown: Report

Bangladesh Post | 22nd April

The country is losing approximately Taka 3300 crore (33 billion) daily due to current shutdown enforced to slow Coronavirus spreading as a group of Dhaka University researchers have predicated catastrophic impact on the economy. As the countrywide coronavirus endemic is causing havoc on every field of economy, the government is yet to publish any document identifying current economic damages.

 

 

BHUTAN

 
We’ll come out of this as a more united and resilient nation: Health Minister

Kuensel | 24th April

While the whole world is struggling to cope up with the novel Coronavirus pandemic, Bhutan could not be any more prepared for the health emergency of this magnitude than it is today.

Bhutanese had just recently elected a new government that prioritised streamlining and upgrading the country’s entire health care system.

The Prime Minister, health and foreign ministers come with decades of experience in health care.


 

MALDIVES

 
Embrace Islamic values this Ramadan amidst the pandemic: Pres Solih

The Edition | 24th April

President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih implored all Maldivians to embrace the Islamic values of kindness, generosity and caring for one another this Ramadan, as the country faces the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing the nation on the occasion of the holy month of Ramadan, President Solih emphasised that this year’s Ramadan would be very different from that of past years due to the precautionary measures imposed across the country in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

 

IMF to loan USD 28.9 mln as COVID-19 support to Maldives

The Edition |23rd April

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a USD 28.9 million disbursement to Maldives to address the country's financial challenges amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a press release, IMF stated that the funds would be issued from its Rapid Credit Facility (RCF), which provides rapid concessional financial assistance to low-income countries, with limited conditionality. IMF's Executive Board approved the disbursement less than a week after the Fund confirmed Maldives' request for financial assistance.


  

MYANMAR

 
Mandalay prepares new lab for COVID-19 testing

Myanmar Times | 23rd April

Mandalay has received its own COVID-19 testing machine from Singapore and aims to start testing patients by the end of May, said U Sai Pan Saing, chair of Regional COVID-19 Information Committee.

The machine will be installed on 35th Street, Mandalay, at a laboratory now occupied by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

 

Myanmar Factories Ignoring COVID-19 Rules Face Prosecution: Suu Kyi

The Irrawaddy | 22nd April

Myanmar’s State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi says factories will face legal action if they defy COVID-19 instructions.

“The government’s instructions are not issued for pleasure. We do not want factories to close. It creates a burden for the government and the workforce. We have only ordered factory closures when necessary,” said the State Counselor.

 

Mandalay issues new quarantine rules, begins factory inspections

Myanmar Times | 22nd April

The Committee for Emergency Response and Control against COVID-19 in Mandalay Region has issued an announcement that those who come back into the region from states and regions with positive cases of the disease must complete a 21-day compulsory facility quarantine and 7-day home quarantine.

Those who come back from areas which are still free of COVID-19 will first have to receive medical checkups. Quarantines will be carried out only if necessary.


 

NEPAL

 
Govt to withdraw two ordinances on facing criticism from all quarters

The Himalayan Times | 24th April

A meeting of the Council of Ministers has decided to withdraw two ordinances that were recently issued by the government, and authenticated by the President.

President Bidya Devi Bhandari, on April 20, in accordance with Article 113 (2) of the Constitution, endorsed ‘Constitutional Council (function, duties, rights and procedure) first amendment, Ordinance, 2077’ and the ‘Political Party (second amendment) Ordinance, 2077’.

 

Supreme Court issues order for adopting sensitivity during lockdown

The Himalayan Times | 24th April

The Supreme Court has issued order requiring all bodies of the state to be sensitive in the situation of lockdown enforced by the government to prevent the possible risk of spread of coronavirus.

A joint bench of Justice Deepak Kumar Karki and Justice Ishwor Prasad Khatiwada issued this order.

“The state office-bearers in whichever role they are should not treat any individual inhumanely and against the law,” the apex court bench stated in its order.


 

PAKISTAN

  
79pc infections in Pakistan caused by local transmission

Dawn | 24th April

While the number of Covid-19 cases has risen to almost 11,000 in the country with 742 new ones surfacing over the past 24 hours, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) revealed on Thursday that 79 per cent of these cases had been caused by local transmission of novel coronavirus.

As the nature of the infection has undergone this change, the government has decided to introduce track and trace system under which random testing of people will start in a few days.

 

Chinese company approaches Pakistan for vaccine trials; nationwide tally jumps to 11,155

The Express Tribune | 24th April

The novel coronavirus emerged in the central China city of Wuhan towards the end of last year and proliferated to almost the whole world within a couple of months. It’s not the virulence or fatality, but the infectivity of the new virus – also known as SARS-CoV-2 – that has set off a global frenzy.

The Covid-19 respiratory illness caused by this mysterious contagion has so far infected more than 2.6 million people in 202 countries and territories of the world – more than 180,000 of them have died and counting.

 

Balanced and smart lockdown can be viable option: PM

The Nation | 24th April

Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the war against the coronavirus pandemic can only be won through national unity and coordinated efforts of all stakeholders concerned.

He was speaking at the Ehsaas Telethon being simultaneously telecast by the PTV and private TV channels to raise funds to fight COVID-19.

Around Rs 550 million were raised during the three-and-a-half-hour-long transmission which marked live calls from the top businessmen, corporate heads, renowned sportsmen, overseas Pakistanis, artists and philanthropists, which were received by the Prime Minister.

 

China will continue to strenghten Pakistan's capacity to fight Covid-19: ambassador

The Express Tribune | 24th April

China will continue to strengthen Pakistan’s capacity to fight the coronavirus outbreak, assured Beijing’s Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing.

The Chinese ambassador called on Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi to discuss Pakistan-China bilateral relations, the fight against the pandemic, China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and other matters of mutual interest, said a statement from the Foreign Office (FO).


 

SRI LANKA

 

Sri Lanka overseas missions seek to re-position exports to meet market conditions resulting from COVID-19 crisis

Colombo Page | 24th April

Sri Lanka’s Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha has said that even though the Foreign Ministry was preoccupied with endeavoring to mitigate a multitude of problems faced by Overseas Sri Lankans, the Ministry in parallel was also seeking to re-position Sri Lanka’s exports in the context of market conditions arisen as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.

Participating in Sri Lanka Rupavahini’s ‘Ethera Methara’ program this week, the Foreign Secretary said if this was successful, Sri Lanka would emerge one step ahead in the global supply chain, in a post COVID-19 world.

 

Japan praises SL military’s role in combating Covid-19

Daily Mirror | 24th April

The Japanese Government has commended the role of the military and Police in supporting the health authorities to combat coronavirus in the country, Sri Lanka Defence Ministry said.

“We appreciate your efforts taken to control the spread of coronavirus,” Deputy Head of Mission of the Japanese Embassy Toshishiro Kitamura said when he met Defence Secretary Maj.Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne at the Ministry, today. (April 24)

 

Sri Lanka to seek $ 400 mn financial facility from India Reserve Bank to meet short term financial needs

Colombo Page | 24th April

Sri Lanka seeks to enter into an agreement with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for a Bilateral Currency Swap Arrangement worth US$ 400 million, Co-Cabinet spokesman Information and Communication Minister Dr Bandula Gunawardena said.

The Cabinet has approved a proposal made by Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa as the Finance Minister to enter into an agreement with the RBI for the financing facility to meet short-term international liquidity requirements, Minister Gunawardena said.

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