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March 31, 2020
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World news Got a TV Licence?You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.Find out moreLive ReportingBy Alexandra Fouché, Georgina Rannard and Robert GreenallAll times stated are UKPosted at 8:518:51Norway urges citizens to come homeNorway is now asking its own citizens to return home as soon as possible, and advising against travel to all foreign countries, Reuters news agency reports.Posted at 8:428:42WATCH: Life inside China’s lockdownFor a glimpse of what life is like under lockdown, watch this video made by two filmmakers inside Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in China.Video contentVideo caption: Coronavirus: Life inside China’s lockdownCoronavirus: Life inside China’s lockdownPosted at 8:378:37Turkey halts flights from parts of EuropeTurkey has said it will be halting flights to and from nine European countries, including Germany and France, until 17 April, Reuters news agency reports. The ban begins on Saturday.The other countries concerned are Spain, Norway, Denmark,
Austria, Sweden, Belgium and the Netherlands. Turkey had already suspended flights to and from Italy.Turkey has reported five cases of the virus so far.Meanwhile the self-declared Turkish republic of Northern Cyprus has banned all non-residents from entering until 1 April.The entity reported its first coronavirus case on Tuesday, a German tourist. Four more people have since tested positive.Posted at 8:338:33Saudi Arabia halting international flightsSaudi Arabia will stop flights into the kingdom for two weeks starting from Sunday. The ban applies in all except “exceptional cases”, the Saudi Press Agency said. There are a reported 86 cases in the country, but no deaths so far. There are concerns in the region about Iran, where an outbreak has killed more than 500 people, and there are fears that unofficial tolls there could be higher.Getty ImagesCopyright: Getty ImagesSaudi Arabia has limited access to holy sites in a bid to control the infectionImage caption: Saudi Arabia has limited access to holy sites in a bid to control the infectionPosted at 8:258:25More on the situation in the USAnnouncing the state of emergency, Mr Trump stressed that the next eight weeks would be critical.Hospitals have been asked to activate their emergency preparedness plans; the emergency order will also allow more people to qualify for government health insurance.Late on Friday, the US House of Representatives passed an aid package to fight the outbreak that includes free testing and paid sick leave, as well as measures to help stabilise financial markets.Posted at 8:228:22More videos of lockdown dancing in ItalyOn Friday we reported about videos on social media of Italians singing out traditional songs with their neighbours to keep spirits up during the national quarantine. Video contentVideo caption: Coronavirus: Italians sing from their windows to boost moraleCoronavirus: Italians sing from their windows to boost moraleAnother video on Friday night shows a DJ in Palermo, Sicily performing a set for his neighbourhood from his balcony. Let’s hope his neighbours like dancing…Posted at 8:178:17Australia-New Zealand cricket series postponedGetty ImagesCopyright: Getty ImagesTwo one-day cricket internationals and three T20 games between Australia and New Zealand have been postponed because of the coronavirus outbreak.Read more herePosted at 8:028:02More imported cases in China than local infectionsFor the first time China is reporting that it has more new cases of the virus brought from outside the country, than infections passed on locally. The data released by China’s National Health Commission shows that the country had 11 new cases on Friday, four of which were locally transmitted in Hubei province where the new coronavirus began. The other seven cases are in travellers from Italy, the US and Saudi Arabia.Posted at 7:547:54What about the situation in Europe?On Friday, the head of the World Health Organization declared Europe was now the “epicentre” of the global pandemic.Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged countries to use aggressive measures, community mobilisation and social distancing to save lives.”Do not just let this fire burn,” he said.His comments came as several European countries reported steep rises in infections and deaths. Italy has recorded its highest daily toll yet.Read more here.BBCCopyright: BBCPosted at 7:447:44What’s the latest in the US?President Donald Trump has imposed a travel ban on 26 European nations as part of a contingency plan to tackle the coronavirus crisis.It excludes the UK, the Republic of Ireland and other countries outside the Schengen area, and returning US citizens.Mr Trump has also declared a national emergency, releasing up to $50bn (£40bn) in relief funds.There are nearly 2,000 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the US, and 43 deaths.Read more here.Posted at 7:377:37Emergency coronavirus plan for prisonsBBCCopyright: BBCThe UK government is drawing up emergency plans to avoid disruption in England’s prisons, with unions saying prison officers face “unprecedented” challenges.Prison staff will be offered bonuses to cover shortages – and staff could be redeployed to cover front-line services.A number of inmates died during unrest at several Italian prisons last week after visits were suspended.The Prison Officers’ Association has compared conditions in England’s prisons to those found on cruise ships and the Prison Governors’ Association has said cases of the virus are inevitable.Read more herePosted at 7:327:32Making sense of the weekThe continuous flow of news about the outbreak may feel overwhelming at times, so here is a summary of what happened over the past seven days to help you make sense of the recent developments.Five things to help make sense of the week’Dab when you cough’The World Health Organization (WHO) reminds people of a useful way to cough that protects yourself and others – c/o football star Paul Pogba.Posted at 7:257:25Apple closes all stores outside ChinaApple CEO Tim Cook has announced that the tech company will be temporarily closing all stores “outside of Greater China” until 27 March to help prevent the spread of Covid-19.The statement linked to Mr Cook’s tweet dated 13 March said all stores in “Greater China” had reopened “as of today”.Posted at 7:147:14Welcome to today’s coverageWelcome back to the BBC’s live coverage of the global coronavirus outbreak. Here are some of the latest developments:
President Donald Trump has declared a national emergency in the US, releasing $50bn (£40.8bn) in federal funds

A ban on non-American travellers from 26 European countries comes into force in the US

The number of cases in the US passes 500, with 21 deaths

New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern imposes 14-day quarantine on anyone entering the country from Sunday

In the UK, mass gatherings could be banned as early as next weekend, government sources say

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