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New Zealand Postpones Election Amid Coronavirus Resurgence

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Amid the spike in coronavirus cases in New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has on Monday postponed the country’s general election by a month as the country tackles a new outbreak of the coronavirus.

Ardern said in a news conference said the general election which had been scheduled for September 19 is now postponed by four weeks to October 17 but ruled out delaying it any further, she added that this “provides sufficient time for parties to plan around the range of circumstances we will be campaigning under.”

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Earlier, New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland went back into lockdown amid the resurgence of COVID-19 infections after the country had been free of coronavirus cases for 102 days.

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The country on Monday reported nine new coronavirus cases bringing the number of active cases linked to the Auckland cluster to 58.

According to figures from Johns Hopkins University New Zealand has reported more than 1,600 infections and 22 deaths.

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Argentina Rising COVID-19 Delays School Reopening / ANN News

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Argentina Rising COVID-19 Delays School Reopening / ANN News

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Belarus President Closes Western Borders, Puts Army On High Alert

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Belarus President Closes Western Borders, Puts Army On High Alert

Protesters in Belarus are still angry in their sixth week of mass protests demanding the resignation of president Alexander Lukashenko.

The president has announced, in retaliation, he is putting troops on high alert and closing the country’s borders with Poland and Lithuania.  He also said the Belarusian border with Ukraine would be strengthened.

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Lukashenko insists the six weeks of protests are driven by the west. He faces increasing criticism from the united states and the European Union.

Demonstrations began after the disputed august presidential election official results gave the authoritarian leader a sixth term in office–results opponents say were manipulated.

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Bolivian Interim President Anez Withdraws From Election Race

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Bolivian Interim President Anez Withdraws From Election Race

Bolivia’s interim president Jeanine Anez has withdrawn from next month’s presidential election, saying she’s withdrawing in the interest of the party.

Anez, a former conservative senator, took office during the power vacuum that followed former president Morales’s departure after allegations of irregularities in last year’s election.  Those allegations fueled violent protests, and army pressure forced the country’s first indigenous president into exile in Mexico.

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Anez says if she does not step down, Morales would possibly return to power.

She declined to name the candidate for whom she will vote.

Next month’s election is the delayed rerun of last year’s ballot.  Anez’s candidacy had sparked controversy after she initially ruled herself out and pledged to guide the country to transparent new elections.

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By pulling out of the race, analysts say Anez could increase chances that the election will be pushed to a second round by consolidating the anti-Arce vote.

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To avoid a second round, the election winner requires at least 40 percent of valid votes in the first round and a 10-point advantage over the closest competitor.

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