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TOPIC: omicron


Risks Of Reinfection And Long COVID: The Pandemic Is Not Over

Too many people no longer follow basic protocol: mask wearing, physical distancing and avoiding crowded events. The consequences are an increase in both daily case numbers and long COVID.

The latest Omicron variant BA.5 is fast becoming dominant worldwide, including in New Zealand and Australia. As it continues to surge, reinfection will become increasingly common and this in turn means more people will develop long COVID.

The two most concerning aspects of long COVID are its high prevalence (up to 30% of those infected) and a link between reinfection and a higher risk of harmful outcomes.

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In Rare Challenge, Chinese Youth Defy Government On COVID Lockdowns

On social media and at universities, with sarcastic videos and graffiti, young people are showing they are sick and tired of Zero COVID policies. People are still waiting to see how the Xi Jinping regime might react.

BEIJING — Since March, mainland China has experienced the largest local outbreak of COVID-19 cases since the early days of the pandemic in Wuhan, in January 2020. According to the National Health Commission of China, between March 1 and 18, more than 29,000 infections have been reported in mainland China, affecting 28 provinces. Restrictions and lockdown measures were introduced in various provinces, but the “Zero COVID” policies are facing rising dissent among the population.

The concerns have largely been economic-related: A post on Weibo (China’s equivalent to Twitter) summarizes people’s complaint, “the landlord is telling me to pay the rent, the banks are telling me to repay loans, the state is telling me not to go to work, the government is telling me not to go out, the whole country is telling me to carry on, but no one is telling me where the money is supposed to come from.”

Demands for lifting measures spread across the nation via TikTok videos and social media posts, countering the tight regulations and the state’s endeavor to secure the “Zero COVID” campaign.

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Kharkiv Civilian Deaths, Russia Bears Down on Kyiv, More Talks Scheduled

👋 Goedendag!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Ukraine’s president calls Russian targeting of central Kharkiv a war crime, Russian troops are closing in on Kyiv and Die Welt reports from near the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad on the rising fear following Putin’s putting nuclear forces on high alert. We also look at how countries around the world are coming around to the controversial COVID policies of Sweden.


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Battle For Kyiv, New EU Sanctions, Russia Protests

👋 Jambo!*

Welcome to Friday, where a battle is underway for control of the capital city of Kyiv a day after Russia’s assault on Ukraine began, which included the capture of the Chernobyl nuclear site. Meanwhile new international sanctions are imposed on Moscow as protests erupt around the world against the invasion. We also have a story from French business daily Les Echos looking at how Russian oligarchs are turning to cryptocurrencies to preserve their financial assets in the face of sanctions.


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In The News
Laure Gautherin, Anne-Sophie Goninet, Bertrand Hauger and Hannah Steinkopf-Frank

Russia Invades — World Leaders Condemn Putin, Stand By Ukraine

👋 Dia dhuit!*

Welcome to Thursday, where Russia launches a full-scale Ukraine invasion, sparking condemnation from around the world. A new COVID vaccine is unveiled and a study finds out pets are also good for your brain. Meanwhile, Ukrainian news website Livy Bereg offers exclusive details of the apparent “staged evacuations” in Donbas last week that have been used to justify Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.


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In The News
Anne-Sophie Goninet and Lorraine Olaya

Ukraine State Of Emergency, Amsterdam Standoff, Britney’s Memoir

👋 नमस्ते*

Welcome to Wednesday, where sanctions multiply against Russia, Ukraine is set to declare a month-long state of emergency and China warns against making Taiwan comparisons. Meanwhile, Britney Spears scores a big publishing deal for a tell-all memoir. We also have La Stampa's Francesca Mannocchi exclusive on-the-ground reportage at one of Afghanistan’s rigid, boys-only madrasas near Kabul where the next generation of students is being shaped by the Taliban.

[*Namaste - Hindi]

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In The News
Anne-Sophie Goninet, Hannah Steinkopf-Frank and Bertrand Hauger

Putin Orders Troops Into Ukraine, Colombia Legalizes Abortion, Chess Prodigy

👋 Asham!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Vladimir Putin orders troops into eastern Ukraine, Boris Johnson announces lifting of all COVID restrictions and a 16-year-old chess prodigy beats the world champion. From China, we also look at how a recent video of a woman in chains has put the spotlight on the horrible treatment of the mentally ill in the country’s rural areas.

[*Oromo - Ethiopia and Kenya]

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In The News
Lorraine Olaya, Jane Herbelin and Anne-Sophie Goninet

G7 Meet On Ukraine, Polio In Africa, Giant Strawberry

👋 안녕*

Welcome to Friday, where G7 leaders meet for crunch talks on Ukraine, Africa sees its first case of polio in five years and wow that’s one big strawberry. We also take a look at the way some countries around the world are dealing with witch hunts (the literal kind) both past and present.

[*Annyeong - Korean]

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In The News
Anne-Sophie Goninet, Bertrand Hauger and Jane Herbelin

Withdrawal Confusion, Travel Sector Bounces Back, Anthem Mixup

👋 Bula!*

Welcome to Thursday, where NATO allies accuse Russia of lying about withdrawing troops from Ukraine border, Airbus and Airbnb post record profits, and a soccer match sees a major national anthem woopsie. For French daily Les Echos, Johanne Courbatère de Gaudric looks at the surprising health benefits hiding in a bottle of perfume.


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In The News
Jane Herbelin and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Ukraine Skepticism, First Woman Cured of HIV, Ghost Shark Sighting

👋 Bună ziua!*

Welcome to Wednesday, where Russia’s announcement that it is pulling some of its forces from the Ukraine border is met with skepticism, a U.S. woman is cured of HIV in world first and an extremely rare baby ghost shark was spotted in the depths of the oceans off New Zealand. Egyptian online newspaper Mada Masr also looks at how the pandemic has highlighted the country’s endemic education problems.


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In The News
Jane Herbelin and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Russia’s Partial Pullback, Trudeau’s Emergency Powers, Sand Art Record

👋 नमस्ते*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Russia says it will pull back some of its troops from the Ukraine border, Justin Trudeau invokes emergency powers to quell Ottawa protests, and UAE leaders get immortalized in sand. Meanwhile, Worldcrunch’s Anna Akage analyzes what’s behind whispers that Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov could become Russia’s next ruler.

[*Namaste - Nepali]

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In The News
Anne-Sophie Goninet and Jane Herbelin

Scholz In Kyiv, Canada Trucker Blockade Ends, Valentine For Your Ex


Welcome to Monday, where German Chancellor Sholz goes to Kyiv and then Moscow to try to avert a Russian invasion of Ukraine, the trucker blockade has ended at the U.S.-Canada border and we’ve got one perfect Valentine’s Day gift for your ex. For weekly news magazine Jeune Afrique, Eva Sauphie reports on the women flipping the conversation on sexuality in West Africa.


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