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The World Health Organization has warned against the idea of allowing Covid-19 to simply spread through society, calling this “herd immunity” approach to fighting the pandemic “unethical.”

“Never in the history of public health has herd immunity been used as a strategy for responding to an outbreak, let alone a pandemic,” WHO chief Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus said during a virtual briefing on Monday, calling the idea “unethical.”

Tedros added that herd immunity to a virus is usually achieved when the vast majority of the population – 80 percent, in the case of polio – is vaccinated, rather than deliberately infected.




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“The vast majority of people in most countries remain susceptible to this virus,” he said, adding that “allowing a dangerous virus that we don’t fully understand to run free is simply unethical. It’s not an option.”

Tedros’ words came days after the WHO’s Dr. David Nabarro warned world leaders against using lockdowns as their “primary control method” against the virus.

Nabarro explained that lockdowns only buy healthcare systems time to “reorganize, regroup, [and] rebalance your resources,” and have disastrous economic consequences that worsen poverty and inequality in society.

The WHO did not always oppose lockdowns, but it cautioned at the outset of the pandemic that, unless accompanied by proper systems of isolation and contact tracing, they would only pause the spread of the virus. Additionally, the organization advised against travel restrictions back in January and February.




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However, localized lockdowns are one tool currently being used in an effort to get a grip on the rapidly resurging virus. In the UK on Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a three-tiered system of local restrictions, dependent on the rate of infection in different areas, while the French government last week declared that some local restrictions would remain in place until at least the end of 2020. In Ireland, disease specialists have warned the public that Dublin could be under lockdown for years, though official advisers haven’t made any such bold statements yet.

Not all have followed the same approach though. In Sweden, the government never implemented a lockdown, and while cases there have begun to rise in recent weeks, deaths remain extremely low, with none reported si

With its first international news channel launched in 2005, RT is now a global, round-the-clock news network of eight TV channels, broadcasting news, current affairs, and documentaries, with digital platforms in six languages and RUPTLY video news agency. Round-the-clock news channels in English, Arabic, Spanish, and documentary channel RT Doc, in English and Russian, broadcast from Moscow, while RT America airs from Washington, RT UK from London, and RT France from Paris. Today, RT is available in more than 100 countries spanning five continents.

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Pakistan blast: At least seven dead in Peshawar school attack

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At least seven people have died after an explosion during a class at a religious school in Pakistan, police have said.

Children of various age groups are among the dead, an officer at the scene told the BBC.

Dozens of others were injured in the attack, which took place in the northern city of Peshawar.

No group has yet claimed responsibility. An investigation has been launched.

The city of Peshawar, close to the Afghan border, has seen some of the worst of the violence during the Taliban insurgency in recent years.

Six years ago, gunmen stormed a military school in the city leaving more than 150 dead, including many children.

What happened?

The blast took place at about 08:30 local time (03:30 GMT), police told the BBC.

About 60 people are understood to have been in the class at the religious school, known as a madrassa.

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An eyewitness has told the police he saw a man enter the building with a bag of explosives shortly before the blast.

news agency that two teachers were injured.

Hospital officials told Reuters news agency that they had received dozens of injured, many with burns.

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Duterte seeks best Covid vaccine deal but ‘will not beg’ or allow private suppliers to rip off Philippines

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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he would pursue a direct government-to-government deal for a coronavirus vaccine with either China or Russia, warning that ‘corrupt’ private suppliers could try to swindle his country.

“Let me tell everybody that we will not beg, we will pay,” Duterte said in a televised address on Monday night, adding that while Manila is not seeking charity it also aims to sign a direct government-to-government deal without intermediaries.

The president did not indicate the status of vaccine negotiations with Beijing or Moscow, saying he merely mentioned the two countries as possible sources out of a “sense of urgency,” and that “all options” were still on the table. 

The one that could give us the best interest for the country will be chosen.

Duterte stressed the need to obtain an inoculation directly from a friendly foreign state, rather than a private business, warning that such transactions could only bring “trouble” and that a government deal would mean “no corruption.”




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Under its proposed national budget for 2021, Manila will devote some 2.5 billion Philippine pesos ($51.6 million) to vaccine procurement, which Duterte said would be overseen by Finance Secretary Carlos ‘Sonny’ Dominguez III.

“Since he is going to pay, I will listen to Sonny. If there are no funds, he will go to jail,” the president said, apparently threatening prison time for a member of his own cabinet.

Duterte previously torched Western pharma firms developing coronavirus immunizations, saying they were “all about profit,” pointing to some companies who asked for a “cash advance before they deliver the vaccine.” The leader gave a stern warning to any company who offered similar proposals, vowing “I’ll kick your a**.”

Though the president has offered to be the first in his country to take the jab developed in Russia, Sputnik V, it is not clear whether such an arrangement has been made. However, Moscow’s ambassador to the island nation, Igor Khovaev, recently stated the jab could be available to the Philippines by the end of the year.




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At least 7 killed, 70 wounded after bomb goes off at religious school in Pakistan – hospital official

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At least seven people were killed and more than 70 wounded in an explosion inside a seminary in northern Pakistan on Tuesday morning. Children are among the victims.

The blast took place in Peshawar, the capital of the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Senior police official Wagar Azim told AFP that a bomb brought inside the Speen Jammat mosque, which also functions as a religious school for local children, went off in the middle of Quran studi

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