Sun, 11 Apr 2021

BEIJING, March 4 (Xinhua) -- The following are the updates on the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

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BEIJING -- The Chinese mainland reported no new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, the National Health Commission said Thursday.

Ten new imported COVID-19 cases were reported on Wednesday, said the commission in its daily report.

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JOHANNESBURG -- Lesotho received its first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines on Wednesday since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out a year ago.

Lesotho received the 36,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine via COVAX, a multilateral vaccine initiative backed by the World Health Organization, according to the agency and the United Nations Children's Fund.

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WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Joe Biden on Wednesday criticized Republican governors in southern states of Texas and Mississippi over their decisions to reverse mask mandates and other COVID-19 safety policies, calling these actions "Neanderthal thinking."

"I think it's a big mistake. Look, I hope everybody's realized by now, these masks make a difference. We are on the cusp of being able to fundamentally change the nature of this disease because of the way in which we're able to get vaccines in people's arms," Biden told reporters from the White House.

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SAO PAULO -- The Governor of the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo Joao Doria announced on Wednesday that starting on Saturday most store, bar and restaurant operations will be banned for two weeks, as a night curfew goes into effect, to prevent the collapse of the hospital system.

The measure will run from March 6 to 19 throughout the state of Sao Paulo, the most populated in Brazil with 46 million residents.

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WARSAW -- The Polish biotechnology company Mabion has signed a preliminary agreement with U.S. drugmaker Novavax to produce its COVID-19 vaccine, Mabion announced on Wednesday.

The agreement is the latest sign of Poland's effort to increase the sourcing of additional vaccines, following delivery issues of the vaccines purchased by the European Union.

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MADRID -- Spain's total COVID-19 deaths surpassed 70,000 on Wednesday after the Ministry of Health reported that 446 people had lost their lives to the virus in the past 24 hours.

The total number of deaths has now risen to 70,247 since the start of the pandemic.

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