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Amnesty Calls For Independent Investigation Into Beirut Explosion

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Morocco Sends Tonnes Of Emergency Aid To Lebanon

The Amnesty International has on Wednesday called for an independent probe into the explosion in Lebanon’s capital, Beirut on Tuesday, killing at least 137 persons and injuring more than 5,000.

Speaking on the need for the probe, the rights group acting chief Julie Verhaar said in a statement that an independent probe “free from any potential domestic political interference” in order to assure “truth, justice, and reparations” for the victims.

He added “the horrific scenes in the aftermath of the explosion were devastating for a country already suffering under the strain of multiple crises.”

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Verhaar said “whatever may have caused the explosion, including the possibility of a large amount of ammonium nitrate stored unsafely, Amnesty International is calling for an international mechanism to be promptly set up to investigate how this happened.”

On Wednesday, the president of Lebanon, Michel Aoun said that 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, used in fertilizers and bombs, had been stored for six years at the port without safety measures, a decision he said that was “unacceptable”.

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Many Lebanese are expressing immense shock and sadness at the destruction, and great anger towards those who allowed the explosion which sent shockwaves across the capital to happen.

Dazed, weeping and injured people walked through streets searching for relatives as many were also left homeless by the blast, and some residents said their destroyed homes had been burgled in the night as their windows and doors were blown open.

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French president, Emmanuel Macron on Thursday became the first world leader to visit the country – a former colony of France – since the tragedy.

He told crowds he would not let aid go to “corrupt hands”, and promised to call for a “new political pact” from the country’s leaders.

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Mexico COVID-19 Mobile Blood Donations / ANN News Video link

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Mexico COVID-19 Mobile Blood Donations

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Health News

India Surpasses 5 Million Coronavirus Cases

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India Surpasses 5 Million Coronavirus Cases, 82,066 Deaths

India has set a record for the world’s highest single-day increase in Coronavirus cases. The country reported more than seventy-eight thousand cases in one day.

India is the world’s second most infected country behind United States with a total of 5,020,359 COVID-19 cases, while the US is leading with more than 6.6 million infections.

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The rise comes as the government continues to lift restrictions to try to boost an economy that lost millions of jobs when the virus hit in March.

Despite the increase, the government is pressing ahead with easing restrictions.

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Chairman of the Medanta division of peripheral vascular and endovascular sciences, Dr Rajiv Parekh says doctors are concerned about under-reporting and limited testing.

COVID-19 deaths in India is now more than 82,000, the third highest in the world behind the US and Brazil.

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According to data from Johns Hopkins University, more than 29.6 million persons around the world have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and 936,377 have died,  while nearly 20.1 million persons have recovered from the disease so far.

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Health News

UAE Announces Emergency Approval For Use Of Coronavirus Vaccine

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UAE Announces Emergency Approval For Use Of Coronavirus Vaccine

United Arab Emirates (UAE) has granted emergency approval for the use of a Coronavirus vaccine, six weeks after human trials in the gulf state started.

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The third phase of the trial of a COVID-19 inactivated vaccine developed by Chinese state-owned pharmaceutical company began in the UAE in July and is yet to be completed.

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The country’s national emergency crisis and disaster management says the vaccine will be available to its front line health workers who are at the highest risk of contracting the virus.

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