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via economynext12/03/2020

Intense PCR testing vital for containing COVID-19, Sri Lankan researchers find in global study - EconomyNext

Intensifying PCR testing was the most crucial intervention towards controlling COVID-19 during the pandemic’s first wave, a global study conducted by Sri Lanka’s Institute for Health Policy (IHP) has found. The study also provides “strong scientific evidence”, the IHP said today (03), that Sri Lanka’s rate of PCR testing was never enough to prevent a second wave.

via hindustantimes12/01/2020

Sri Lanka’s highest court rejects petitions from Muslims against Covid-19 cremations - Hindustan Times

Due to the pandemic, Sri Lanka’s health ministry revised its guidelines on March 31, ordering cremations only for persons who succumbed to or were suspected to have died of Covid-19. Some 12 petitioners had challenged the same, claiming it impinged on the fundamental rights of the island nation’s 9 per cent Muslim minority.

via bizenglish.adaderana.lk11/30/2020

Sri Lanka Economic Summit to Focus on the Post-COVID-19 Economic Recovery -

COVID-19 has disrupted the expectation for global and local growth and development. As economies adapt to the pandemic, there is a high degree of uncertainty about the future trajectory of global growth, trade and investment. The first session of the summit on Pos- COVID-19 Economic Recovery, will aim to answer some of the burning questions...

via who.int11/29/2020

WHO calls for reinvigorated action to fight malaria - World Health Organization

The World Health Organization (WHO) is calling on countries and global health partners to step up the fight against malaria, a preventable and treatable disease that continues to claim hundreds of thousands of lives each year. A better targeting of interventions, new tools and increased funding are needed to change the global trajectory of the disease and reach internationally-agreed targets.According to WHO‘s latest World malaria report, progress against malaria continues to plateau, particularly in high burden countries in Africa. Gaps in access to life-saving tools are undermining global efforts to curb the disease, and the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to set back the fight even further.“It is time for leaders across Africa – and the world – to rise once again to the challenge of malaria, just as they did when they laid the foundation for the progress made since the beginning of this century,” said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “Through joint action, and a commitment to leaving no one behind, we can achieve our shared vision of a world free of malaria.”In 2000, African leaders signed the landmark Abuja Declaration pledging to reduce malaria deaths on the continent by 50% over a 10-year period. Robust political commitment, together with innovations in new tools and a steep increase in funding, catalyzed an unprecedented period of success in global malaria control. According to the report, 1.5 billion malaria cases and 7.6 million deaths have been averted since 2000.A plateau in progressIn 2019, the global tally of malaria cases was 229 million, an annual estimate that has remained virtually unchanged over the last 4 years. The disease claimed some 409 000 lives in 2019 compared to 411 000 in 2018.As in past years, the African Region shouldered more than 90% of the overall disease burden. Since 2000, the region has reduced its malaria death toll by 44%, from an estimated 680 000 to 384 000 annually. However, progress has slowed in recent years, particularly in countries with a high burden of the disease.A funding shortfall at both the international and domestic levels poses a significant threat to future gains. In 2019, total funding reached US $3 billion against a global target of $5.6 billion. Funding shortages have led to critical gaps in access to proven malaria control tools.COVID-19 an added challengeIn 2020, COVID-19 emerged as an additional challenge to the provision of essential health services worldwide. According to the report, most malaria prevention campaigns were able to move forward this year without major delays. Ensuring access to malaria prevention – such as insecticide-treated nets and preventive medicines for children – has supported the COVID-19 response strategy by reducing the number of malaria infections and, in turn, easing the strain on health systems. WHO worked swiftly to provide countries with guidance to adapt their responses and ensure the safe delivery of malaria services during the pandemic.However, WHO is concerned that even moderate disruptions in access to treatment could lead to a considerable loss of life. The report finds, for example, that a 10% disruption in access to effective antimalarial treatment in sub-Saharan Africa could lead to 19 000 additional deaths. Disruptions of 25% and 50% in the region could result in an additional 46 000 and 100 000 deaths, respectively.“While Africa has shown the world what can be achieved if we stand together to end malaria as a public health threat, progress has stalled,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “COVID-19 threatens to further derail our efforts to overcome malaria, particularly treating people with the disease. Despite the devastating impact COVID-19 has had on African economies, international partners and countries need to do more to ensure that the resources are there to expand malaria programmes which are making such a difference in people’s lives.”WHO responseA key strategy to reignite progress is the “High burden to high impact” (HBHI) response, catalyzed in 2018 by WHO and the RBM Partnership to End Malaria. The response is led by 11 countries – including 10 in sub-Saharan Africa – that account for approximately 70% of the world’s malaria burden.Over the last 2 years, HBHI countries have been moving away from a “one-size-fits all” approach to malaria control – opting, instead, for tailored responses based on local data and intelligence. A recent analysis from Nigeria, for example, found that through an optimized mix of interventions, the country could avert tens of millions of additional cases and thousands of additional deaths by the year 2023, compared to a business-as-usual approach.While it is too early to measure the impact of the HBHI approach, the report finds that deaths in the 11 countries were reduced from 263 000 to 226 000 between 2018 and 2019.  India continued to make impressive gains, with reductions in cases and deaths of 18% and 20%, respectively, over the last 2 years. There was, however, a slight increase in the total number of cases among HBHI countries, from an estimated 155 million in 2018 to 156 million in 2019.Meeting global malaria targetsThis year’s report highlights key milestones and events that helped shape the global response to the disease in recent decades. Beginning in the 1990s, leaders of malaria-affected countries, scientists and other partners laid the groundwork for a renewed malaria response that contributed to one of the biggest returns on investment in global health.According to the report, 21 countries eliminated malaria over the last 2 decades; of these, 10 countries were officially certified as malaria-free by WHO. In the face of the ongoing threat of antimalarial drug resistance, the 6 countries of the Greater Mekong subregion continue to make major gains towards their goal of malaria elimination by 2030.But many countries with a high burden of malaria have been losing ground.  According to WHO global projections, the 2020 target for reductions in malaria case incidence will be missed by 37% and the mortality reduction target will be missed by 22%.Note to editorsWHO’s work on malaria is guided by the Global technical strategy for malaria 2016-2030 (GTS), approved by the World Health Assembly in May 2015. The strategy includes four global targets for 2030, with milestones along the way to track progress. The 2030 targets are: 1) reducing malaria case incidence by at least 90%; 2) reducing malaria mortality rates by at least 90%; 3) eliminating malaria in at least 35 countries; and4) preventing a resurgence of malaria in all countries that are malaria-free.Near-term GTS milestones for 2020 include global reductions in malaria case incidence and death rates of at least 40% and the elimination of malaria in at least 10 countries. According to the report, the 2020 milestones for malaria case incidence and mortality rates will be missed:- Case incidence:  WHO projects that, in 2020, there were an estimated 56 malaria cases for every 1000 people at risk of the disease against a GTS target of 35 cases. The GTS milestone will be missed by an estimated 37%.- Mortality rate: The estimate for globally projected malaria deaths per 100 000 population at risk was 9.8 in 2020 against a GTS target of 7.2 deaths. The milestone will be missed by an estimated 22%.WHO African Region – Since 2014, the rate of progress in both cases and deaths in the region has slowed, attributed mainly to the stalling of progress in several countries with moderate or high transmission. In 2019, six African countries accounted for 50% of all malaria cases globally: Nigeria (23%), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (11%), United Republic of Tanzania (5%), Niger (4%), Mozambique (4%) and Burkina Faso (4%). In view of recent trends, the African Region will miss the GTS 2020 milestones for case incidence and mortality by 37% and 25%, respectively. “High burden to high impact” (HBHI) – Launched in November 2018, HBHI builds on the principle that no one should die from a disease that is preventable and treatable. It is led by 11 countries that, together, accounted for approximately 70% of the world’s malaria burden in 2017: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, India, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Uganda and United Republic of Tanzania. Over the last two years, all 11 HBHI countries have implemented activities across four response elements: 1) political will to reduce the toll of malaria; 2) strategic information to drive impact; 3) better guidance, policies and strategies; and 4) a coordinated national malaria responseMalaria elimination – Between 2000 and 2019, 10 countries received the official WHO certification of malaria elimination: United Arab Emirates (2007), Morocco (2010), Turkmenistan (2010), Armenia (2011), Kyrgyzstan (2016), Sri Lanka (2016), Uzbekistan (2018), Paraguay (2018), Argentina (2019) and Algeria (2019). In 2019, China reported zero indigenous cases of malaria for the third consecutive year; the country recently applied for the official WHO certification of malaria elimination. In 2020, El Salvador became the first country in Central America to apply for the WHO malaria-free certificationIn the six countries of the Greater Mekong subregion – Cambodia, China (Yunnan Province), Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam – the reported number of malaria cases fell by 90% from 2000 to 2019, while P. falciparum (Pf) cases fell by 97% in the same time period. This accelerated decrease in Pf malaria is notable in view of the threat posed by antimalarial drug resistance in the subregion.A call for innovation – Eliminating malaria in all countries, especially those with a high disease burden, will likely require tools that are not available today. In September 2019, the WHO Director-General issued a “malaria challenge,” calling on the global health community to ramp up investment in the research and development of new malaria-fighting tools and approaches. This message was further reinforced in the April 2020 report of the WHO Strategic advisory group on malaria eradication.


Cricket fan still in Sri Lanka eight months after England tour cancellation - Yahoo News UK

A cricket fan who travelled to Sri Lanka in March to watch England's tour is still there eight months after it was cancelled - and has vowed to remain until Joe Root's team returns. Rob Lewis, a web designer from Sunbury-on-Thames, has been on a personal adventure during his unplanned stay in the island country, adopting a stray dog while living on a beach, becoming a DJ with his own alter-ego, getting a tattoo and befriending members of the Sri Lanka cricket team's coaching staff.

via menafn11/27/2020

Sri Lanka- Former CID Director Shani Abeysekara transferred to IDH hospital - MENAFN.COM

By Vyshnavy Velrajh

Former Director of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) Shani Abeysekara has been transferred

via fox28spokane11/26/2020

The Latest: France says masks still necessary after vaccine - FOX 28 Spokane

PARIS (AP) — France’s health minister says his country is readying to start administering COVID-19 vaccines in late December. But Olivier Veran is warning Thursday that people will still have to wear masks and keep their distance even after vaccines are widely available. Veran said he can’t say yet whether mass vaccination “will allow us to get rid of this virus and totally return to our past lives,” because it’s not clear exactly how long protection from the eventual vaccines will last. Noting broad skepticism in France about vaccine safety, he promised transparency about vaccination policy and to release plans soon on who will get the vaccine first and how. President Emmanuel Macron has said France will not make COVID vaccines mandatory. The government laid out details Thursday of a gradual easing of its monthlong virus lockdown and announced hundreds of millions of euros in new aid for struggling workers and students and businesses forced to close. French authorities are also increasing efforts to counteract the mental health consequences of the second lockdown and protracted pandemic. The prime minister said a government hotline for psychological help is now receiving 20,000 calls a day. France leads Europe in numbers of confirmed virus infections, and has reported 50,618 virus-related deaths. ——— HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK: — Americans risk traveling over Thanksgiving despite warnings — Congress braces for Biden’s national coronavirus strategy — Pandemic gave locals fleeting taste of a tourist-free Hawaii — To avoid any traces of the coronavirus that might be lurking on surfaces, Americans have been wiping down groceries, wearing surgical gloves in public and leaving mail packages out for an extra day or two. But experts say the national fixation on scrubbing can sometimes be overkill. — California has reported a record number of coronavirus cases on the eve of Thanksgiving. More than 18,000 COVID-19 infections were reported Wednesday. — Though the first real snow has yet to fall across much of Europe, ski buffs are imagining with dread a bizarre scene: Skiing in Zermatt in Switzerland while lifts idle across the border in Italy’s Aosta valley. ——— Follow AP’s coverage at and ——— HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING: GENEVA — The World Health Organization says people need to get more active, warning that up to 5 million deaths worldwide could be avoided each year if people were. That’s despite the coronavirus pandemic. The U.N. health agency, launching updated guidelines on sedentary behavior Thursday, is pointing to figures that one in four adults don’t get enough physical activity — a situation complicated by the COVID-19 crisis that has shut many people indoors. The agency recommends at least 2 1/2 hours of “moderate to vigorous aerobic activity” for adults per week, and an hour per day for kids and teens. A lack of physical activity leads to extra health care costs of billion per year, plus another billion in lost productivity, the Geneva-based WHO said. ——— ZAGREB, Croatia — Croatia’s government is closing down bars and restaurants and further limiting any gatherings in a bid to curb a surge in new coronavirus infections. Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic on Thursday announced the new set of measures that will take effect this upcoming weekend and last until Dec. 21 when the authorities will review them. Plenkovic said the government has tried to maintain normal functioning during the second wave of the pandemic but that a rise in new cases has forced stricter measures. The country of 4.2 million on Thursday reported a record 4,009 new infections, while 51 people have died in the last 24 hours. The new rules include a ban on more than 25 people in public gatherings and ten on private occasions. Weddings are banned and funerals can have no more than 25 people and no close contact. While bars and restaurants will be closed, food delivery is allowed and cultural events can be held only with respect of gathering limits. The church is advised to broadcast religious ceremonies or respect epidemiological advise and only 40% capacity in public transport can be filled. ——— BELGRADE, Serbia — Serbia is registering a major surge in new coronavirus cases as health authorities warn that hospitals are running out of beds for patients. Authorities on Thursday confirmed 7,606 new cases in the last 24 hours, a record for the Balkan country of 7 million people. They said 51 people died. Epidemiologists have warned that the government was late in adopting a series of restrictive measures. Politicians are blaming the unprecedented surge on people failing to comply with the restrictions. Serbia has so far registered about 150,000 COVID-19 cases and over 1,300 deaths. ——— NEW DELHI — India’s capital New Delhi is considering a nighttime curfew amid the latest coronavirus surge that has battered the city’s healthcare system and overwhelmed its hospitals. The New Delhi government on Thursday told this to a court that had questioned the administration on the measures being taken to control the spike in daily cases. The court was hearing a plea seeking to ramp up COVID-19 testing facilities in the capital, which is recording the most number of cases from any state in India for the last three weeks and more than 100 fatalities on an average every day for two consecutive weeks. India’s new overall infections have declined steadily after peaking in mid-September, but the situation in the capital remains worrying. The surge in the national capital had started at the end of October and reached record highs this month. On Nov. 11, the city saw 8,593 new cases, an all-time high. According to the official data, New Delhi has recorded almost 2,300 deaths due to coronavirus in the last month. India has recorded 9.26 million cases of coronavirus, second behind the U.S. More than 135,00 Indians have died because of the virus so far. ——— TOKYO — Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga says that the next three weeks are going to be key for the country to stop further escalation of the surge in coronavirus infections that experts warn are putting medical systems on the verge of collapse. “The upcoming three weeks is a critical time,” Suga said Thursday, asking the people to thoroughly protect themselves by using masks, frequently washing hands and avoiding common risks. “Everyone, please cooperate.” Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike on Wednesday issued a request for early closing time for places serving alcohol from Saturday to Dec. 17 and urged residents to avoid non-essential outings. On Thursday, she said the measures are needed “before the situation becomes even more serious.” Japan survived the first wave in the spring without hard lockdowns. ——— LONDON — Most people in England will continue to face tight restrictions on socializing and business after a nationwide lockdown ends next week. The government announced details Thursday of the three-level regional measures that will take effect Dec. 2. Only three remote and island areas are in the lowest tier, where pubs and restaurants can open almost as normal and members of different households can meet up indoors. London, with more than 8 million people, is in the middle level, where most shops, restaurants and leisure businesses can open with restrictions. A huge chunk of central and northern England, including the cities of Birmingham and Manchester, will be placed in the top tier, where pubs and restaurants can only serve takeout and delivery, and leisure venues such as cinemas and bowling alleys must stay closed. The government imposed a four-week lockdown in England early this month to curb an autumn surge in coronavirus cases, with travel restricted and non-essential businesses closed. The government’s statistics office says the infection rate appears to have leveled off, but Health Secretary Matt Hancock said “we must remain vigilant.” ——— ATHENS, Greece — Greece’s government spokesman says the country is extending its current lockdown measures, which had been due to expire at the end of the month, until Dec. 7. Stelios Petsas said Thursday the extension in restrictions were necessary due to the continued spread of the virus, which was of particular concern in certain parts of the country, mainly in north. Under the lockdown restrictions, all retail stores, bars, restaurants, museums, entertainment venues and gyms are closed. People are only allowed to leave home for specific reasons, including work, health reasons, to buy essential goods, to exercise or walk a pet, and must send a telephone text message or carrying a self-declaration to do so. However, there are no restrictions on how many times a day people can leave their homes, or for how long. Greece currently has more than 97,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and just over 1,900 deaths in this country of 11 million. Nearly 600 people are intubated in ICUs nationwide, according to figures released Wednesday evening. ——— BERLIN — Germany has passed the grim milestone of more than 15,000 deaths from the coronavirus. The Robert Koch Institute, the country’s disease control center, said Thursday that another 389 deaths were recorded overnight, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 15,160. Germany has seen 983,588 total cases of the coronavirus after adding 22,368 overnight, the agency said. Germany embarked on a so-called “wave-breaker” shutdown on Nov. 2, closing restaurants, bars, sports and leisure facilities but leaving schools, shops and hair salons open. It was initially slated to last four weeks but Chancellor Angela Merkel and the country’s 16 state governors agreed late Wednesday to extend it through Dec. 20 with a goal of pushing the number of new coronavirus cases in each region below 50 per 100,000 inhabitants per week. It’s currently at 140 per 100,000. Merkel said that while existing measures have succeeded in halting an surge in new coronavirus infections, they have stabilized at a high level. ——— STOCKHOLM — Sweden’s Prince Carl Philip, who is fifth in the line of succession, and his wife Princess Sofia have tested positive for the coronavirus, the Swedish royal household said Thursday, adding that they have “milder flu symptoms but feel well under the circumstances. The prince, son of Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf, and his wife are quarantined at home with their two children, the palace said. The monarch, Austrian-born Queen Silvia, their oldest daughter Crown Princess Victoria, and Prince Daniel will protectively be tested Thursday, it said in a statement. The royal family had been together in connection with Friday’s burial of Walther Sommerlath, Silvia’s brother in Sweden, palace spokeswoman Margareta Thorgren told the Aftonbladet daily. The 41-year-old prince wed Sofia Hellqvist, now 35, in June 2015. The couple has two children, Prince Alexander and Prince Gabriel. King Carl Gustaf is Sweden’s head of state, but his duties are ceremonial and he holds no political power. ——— MOSCOW — Russian authorities have reported a record number of coronavirus deaths for a third straight day. The government coronavirus task force registered 524 new deaths on Thursday, the highest daily toll in the pandemic. Previous records of 507 and 491 deaths were reported on Wednesday and Tuesday. A total of 38,062 people have died of coronavirus in Russia, according to the task force. Russia has been swept by a rapid resurgence of the outbreak this fall, with numbers of confirmed COVID-19 infections and deaths hitting new highs almost daily and significantly exceeding those reported in the spring. On Thursday, officials reported 25,487 new infections, another record number. The country’s authorities have rejected the idea of another nationwide lockdown or widespread closure of businesses, leaving it to regional governments to impose their own measures. In most, those don’t go beyond mask mandates, limiting the hours of bars and restaurants, ordering the elderly to self-isolate, forbidding mass public events and requiring employers to have some staff work from home. On Thursday, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin extended requirements for the elderly to self-isolate and for employers to have 30% of their staff work from home until Jan. 15. ——— HONG KONG — Hong Kong on Thursday reported its third straight day of over 80 new coronavirus infections, a day after its leader declared a goal of “zero infections” in an annual policy address. Authorities reported 81 coronavirus infections, 13 of which were not traceable. Daily cases in the past week have surged to a three-month high, resulting in the cancellation of a planned air travel bubble between Hong Kong and Singapore. Many of the cases in the recent surge have been linked to outbreaks in dance studios across the city, with Hong Kong ordering those who have visited stipulated venues to undergo mandatory testing. Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said in her annual policy address on Wednesday that the city is aiming for “zero infections,” and said that it might implement another round of mass testing of its residents. The increase in locally transmitted cases has prompted concern that a new wave of the virus has begun in the city. Authorities have tightened social distancing measures, ordering bars and nightclubs to close, in an attempt to stem the transmission. ——— NAIROBI, Kenya — Africa’s top public health official says vaccinations against COVID-19 on the continent might not start until the second quarter of next year. And he says it will be “extremely dangerous” if more developed parts of the world vaccinate themselves and then restrict travel to people with proof of vaccination. The director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, John Nkengasong, told reporters that “I have seen how Africa is neglected when drugs are available” in the past. He warned that “it’s clear the second wave (of infections) is here on the continent” of 1.3 billion people. Africa last week surpassed 2 million confirmed coronavirus infections. The Africa CDC has been discussing vaccine options with Russia, China and others. Nkengasong said that “the worst thing we want for the continent is for COVID to become an endemic disease” in Africa. In one hopeful development, authorities have begun distributing 2.7 million antigen tests throughout the continent, which Nkengasong said is “perhaps a game-changer” that allows for faster and easier testing. So far, some 21 million tests have been conducted across Africa’s 54 countries. ——— COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — Sri Lankan police say 1,123 officers have tested positive for COVID-19 and 2,800 others have been quarantined amid a surge in cases in the capital and its suburbs. Police spokesman Ajith Rohana said Thursday that the 2,800 have been quarantined at their quarters and in quarantine centers. Health authorities have linked the police infections to a cluster of cases centered at the country’s main fish market near Colombo. Sri Lanka has seen an upsurge in the disease since last month, when two clusters emerged — one at a garment factory and the other at the fish market. The confirmed cases from the two clusters grew to 17,934 on Thursday. Sri Lanka’s total confirmed cases reached 21,468 on Thursday, including 96 fatalities. ——— SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea has recorded more than 500 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours for the first time in about eight months as health authorities struggle to contain a fresh surge of infections. The Asian nation has been experiencing a spike in cases since it relaxed stringent social distancing rules last month. To deal with the latest surge, the country on Tuesday re-imposed tough distancing guidelines in Seoul and some other areas. South Korea’s cases initially peaked last February and March, with officials reporting hundreds of fresh cases daily, mostly tied to a religious sect. Another major outbreak came during the summer, and was mostly tied to the greater Seoul area. Officials say the latest bout is worrisome because there are many cluster infections tied to a variety of sources. ——— NEW DELHI — India has extended its restrictions on international flights until the end of the year as coronavirus cases surge in some states and its capital, New Delhi. India’s aviation authority on Thursday said the restrictions will not apply to international cargo flights and those approved under “air bubble” pacts with some countries. Scheduled international passenger services have been suspended in India since March 23. India’s new overall infections have declined steadily after peaking in mid-September. On Thursday, it reported 44,489 new infections, bringing its total confirmed cases to 9.26 million, second behind the United States. Deaths rose by 524 to 135,223. The situation in the capital, however, remains worrying. It recorded 5,246 new cases on Thursday. In an effort to slow the virus, the home ministry has allowed states to impose local restrictions such as night curfews but has asked them to consult before imposing lockdowns at state, district, or city levels. ——— BEIJING — China is reporting nine new coronavirus cases in the vast Inner Mongolia region, where authorities have closed schools, suspended flights, shuttered public venues and banned banquets and other gatherings. The cluster has been centered on Manzhouli, a city of more than 200,000 people on the border with Russia. Authorities ordered testing of all residents to detect new cases after the country’s latest local outbreak first emerged late last week. Ground transport to and from the city has been largely cut off and movement around the city restricted. Elsewhere in China, local infections have also been reported lately in the financial hub of Shanghai and the northern port of Tianjin, although the government’s pandemic update Thursday listed no new cases in those cities. FOX28 Spokane©

via devdiscourse12/02/2020

Amnesty International calls for thorough, impartial probe into Sri Lanka prison deaths - Devdiscourse

Inmates have staged protests in recent weeks in several prisons as the number of confirmed COVID-19 positive cases spiked in the country's overcrowded jails. “In the immediate term, there must be a thorough and impartial investigation into this incident and the use of lethal force – including firing live ammunition – by prison authorities,” David Griffiths, Director of the Office of the Secretary General at Amnesty International said in a statement.

via business-standard12/01/2020

World Coronavirus Dispatch: Unrest in Sri Lankas cramped prisons - Business Standard

Read more about World Coronavirus Dispatch: Unrest in Sri Lanka's cramped prisons on Business-standard. Pandemic widens regional rich-poor gap in Russia, China seeks to change Covid origin story, Food delivery workers are struggling, and other pandemic-related news across the globe

via ft.lk11/29/2020

Sri Lanka Economic Summit to focus on 'Post-COVID-19 Economic Recovery' -

COVID-19 has disrupted the expectation for global and local growth and development. As economies adapt to the pandemic, there is a high degree of uncertainty about the future trajectory of global growth, trade and investment. The first session of the summit on ‘Post-COVID-19 Economic Recovery’, will aim to answer some of the burning questions with regard to the global and local economy at the ..

via menafn11/29/2020

Sri Lanka- Prison coronavirus cluster crosses the 1000 mark - MENAFN.COM

The prison coronavirus cluster crossed the 1000 mark today, the Prisons Department said.

The Prisons Department said that another 183 inmates tested positive for the coronavirus today taking the total to 1,091.

Yesterday (Saturday) 63 inmates at the Welikada Prison tested positive for the coronavirus.

Commissioner General of Prisons Th

via newsfirst.lk11/27/2020

COVID-19 death toll in Sri Lanka passes 100 mark with 08 new deaths -

Colombo (News 1st); 08 COVID-19 deaths were confirmed on Friday (27), raising Sri Lanka's death toll to 107 deaths, reported the Department of Government - Get the latest breaking news and top stories from Sri Lanka, the latest political news, sports news, weather updates, exam results, business news, entertainment news, world news and much more from News 1st, Sri Lanka's leading news network.

via newsfirst.lk11/27/2020

IOM Sri Lanka & Switzerland assist COVID-19 repatriation -

Colombo (News 1st); IOM Sri Lanka in partnership with the Government of Switzerland assisted the COVID-19 repatriation efforts of the Government of Sri - Get the latest breaking news and top stories from Sri Lanka, the latest political news, sports news, weather updates, exam results, business news, entertainment news, world news and much more from News 1st, Sri Lanka's leading news network.

via ft.lk11/25/2020

Budget 2021 a crucial catalyst for Sri Lanka's post-COVID-19 rebound -

The key Government policy document mostly won bouquets from a range of prominent private sector stakeholders who spoke at the Daily FT-Colombo University MBA Alumni Association organised post-Budget Forum recently for its business-friendly proposals but its success also depends on being underpinned by consistent policies as well as broader legal and regulatory reforms ..

via voanews11/30/2020

Sri Lanka Prison Protest Over COVID-19 Becomes Deadly - Voice of America

Officials say an inmate protest Sunday about the growing number of COVID-19 infections at a prison in Sri Lanka turned into a riot.  Authorities say guards opened fire on the inmates.  At least eight people were killed in the clash and 50 people were wounded at the Mahara prison, about 15 kilometers north of Colombo.  Police spokesman Ajith Rohana told the Associated Press the prisoners “reportedly destroyed most of the property including offices inside the prison.”  Inmates at prisons in Sri Lanka have been demanding early release in recent weeks because of the escalating infections.

via bizenglish.adaderana.lk11/30/2020

Sri Lanka Economic Summit to Focus on the Post COVID-19 Economic Recovery -

COVID-19 has disrupted the expectation for global and local growth and development. As economies adapt to the pandemic, there is a high degree of uncertainty about the future trajectory of global growth, trade and investment. The first session of the summit on Pos- COVID-19 Economic Recovery, will aim to answer some of the burning questions...

via menafn11/29/2020

Seven more coronavirus deaths reported in Sri Lanka - MENAFN.COM

Seven more coronavirus related deaths have been reported in Sri Lanka.

The Government Information Department said that the death toll from the coronavirus in Sri Lanka has now risen to 116.

The seven victims are from Colombo, Moratuwa, Chilaw, Gothatuwa and Akuressa.

One victim is a 50-year-old woman from Colombo 2. She had been transf

via news.yahoo11/29/2020

Cricket fan still in Sri Lanka eight months after England tour cancellation - Yahoo News

A cricket fan who travelled to Sri Lanka in March to watch England's tour isstill there eight months after it was cancelled - and has vowed to remainuntil Joe Root's team returns. Rob Lewis, a web designer from Sunbury-on-Thames, has been on a personal adventure during his unplanned stay in theisland country, adopting a stray dog while living on a beach, becoming a DJwith his own alter-ego, getting a tattoo and befriending members of the SriLanka cricket team's coaching staff.

via bizenglish.adaderana.lk11/27/2020

International mobility beyond COVID-19 -

The rapid spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic globally is partly a symptom of a highly integrated and interconnected world in an era of globalisation. Sri Lanka too is highly connected to various channels of international mobility such as movements across borders of tourists and migrant workers. As such, it is rational to argue that...

via dailytimes.pk11/27/2020

ADB to provide $165m to Sri Lanka to support Covid-hit SMEs - Daily Times

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the government of Sri Lanka have signed a $165 million loan agreement to provide immediate financing support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which have been severely affected by the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, and long-term financing to under-served SMEs, including businesses led by women and tea smallholders. Secretary […]