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Coronavirus news: Boris Johnson ‘blind’ to risk of lifting lockdown as more cities being monitored for spikes ahead of ‘Super Saturday’

Follow all the latest updates on the Covid-19 pandemic from around the world

Starmer calls on PM to extend furlough scheme

Labour has urged Boris Johnson to extend the government’s furlough scheme, telling the prime minister it could be the “last chance to save millions of jobs".

It comes as more towns and cities are monitored for coronavirus spikes that could see them placed under local lockdowns. Ministers have faced criticism for the handling of the surge in cases in Leicester, which was put into the UK’s first local lockdown on Tuesday.

Australian authorities, meanwhile, will lock down about 300,000 people in suburbs north of Melbourne for one month from today after two weeks of double-digit rises in new Covid-19 cases.


Good morning and welcome to today's live blog. We'll be bringing you rolling coverage on all of the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic around the world.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 07:54

Give local authorities better data about spikes, urge leading doctors

Leading doctors are calling for local authorities to be given accurate and up-to-date data on spikes in coronavirus cases.

The British Medical Association (BMA) implored the government to ensure local leaders were given timely information about cases in their area to help contain the spread of the virus.

It comes after ministers faced criticism for the handling of the surge of cases in Leicester.

The BMA urged the government to share "timely, comprehensive and reliable" information to all those involved in the management of new cases at a local level.

It also called for clarity about how regional spikes will be managed in the future.

Dr Chaand Nagpaul, chairman of the BMA Council, said: "The prime minister has talked about a 'whack a mole' strategy to tackle local outbreaks, but this is no use if the people leading the response on the ground - be they public health teams or local leaders - are not given the most accurate up-to-date data possible.

"This is crucial to allow swift action and to protect lives and the health service, and something that is not happening right now.

"This is all the more important given that the 'world leading' test and trace app is not in place, meaning local leaders and teams armed with up-to-date information will be vital in containing spread of outbreaks."


Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 08:00

Australia locks down 300,000 for one month to contain outbreak

Authorities will lock down about 300,000 people in suburbs north of Melbourne for a month to contain the risk of infection after two weeks of double-digit rises in new coronavirus cases in Australia's second most populous state.

Australia has fared better than many countries in the pandemic, with about 7,830 cases and 104 deaths, but the recent surge has stoked fears of a second wave of Covid-19.

From midnight, more than 30 suburbs in Australia's second-biggest city will return to stage three restrictions, the third-strictest level in curbs to control the pandemic. That means residents will be confined to home except for grocery shopping, health appointments, work or care-giving, and exercise.

The restrictions will be accompanied by a testing blitz that authorities hope will extend to half the population of the area affected, and for which borders will be patrolled.

The measures come as curbs ease across the rest of the state of Victoria, with restaurants, gyms and cinemas reopening in recent weeks.

Victoria recorded 73 fresh cases on Tuesday from 20,682 tests, following an increase of 75 cases on Monday. State premier Daniel Andrews warned that the return of broader restrictions across city remained a possibility.


Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 08:04

Up to 5,000 jobs at risk due to coronavirus, says Upper Crust owner

The SSP Group, which owns Upper Crust and Caffe Ritazza, has warned up to 5,000 jobs could be cut as the company grapples with the fallout from the coronavirus crisis.

Plunging passenger numbers at railway stations and airports mean the group expects to open only around a fifth of its sites in the UK by the autumn, as travel is set to remain at very low levels due to the ongoing pandemic.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 08:20

Staff in slaughterhouses are paid the minimum wage despite suffering from post-traumatic stress and other side effects of their brutal work. And now they're at high risk of contracting Covid-19, writes Chas Newkey-Burden for Indy Voices.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 08:30

Lives will be lost if local authorities aren't given better data, leading doctors have warned

Lives will be lost in fresh outbreaks of coronavirus because local health chiefs are being starved of the data they need, doctors’ leaders are warning.

The British Medical Association (BMA) has hit out at the failure to provide local leaders with the addresses and workplaces of people becoming infected – preventing them from taking swift action.

The data gap has been partly blamed for the delay in imposing the local lockdown in Leicester, where it was thought the city had recorded just 80 new Covid-19 cases between 13-26 June.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 08:40

Canada extends travel restrictions

The Canadian government is extending its global travel ban and quarantine rules for those entering the country to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

A mandatory quarantine measure will now stay in place until at least 31 August. People entering the country, including citizens returning home, must self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 09:02

Texas bars sue state’s governor and alcohol commission over coronavirus closures

Bar owners in Texas are suing governor Greg Abbott and the Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission after they were ordered to close amid rising coronavirus cases in the state.

The businesses have argued in court documents that Mr Abbott’s recent executive order, which paused the further reopening of the state and forced them to close, has singled them out unfairly, according to CBS News.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 09:11

Biden says he won’t hold campaign rallies during pandemic

As the US faces a new surge in coronavirus cases, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has said he will hold back on traditional presidential rallies until large gatherings no longer pose a risk.

When one reporter asked if he planned to hold any rallies between now and November, the candidate made it clear that epidemiological concerns came first.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 09:28

Jennifer Aniston urges fans to 'wear a damn mask'

Jennifer Aniston has urged people to “wear a damn mask” to help curb the spread of coronavirus.

The Morning Show star shared a photo on Instagram of herself wearing a face mask alongside a message urging fans to cover up when outdoors.

Chiara.Giordano1 July 2020 09:40

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