While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Oct 18

Global coronavirus cases rise by one-day record of 400,000

Global coronavirus cases rose by more than 400,000 for the first time on Saturday, a record one-day increase as much of Europe enacts new restrictions to curb the outbreak.

Europe, which successfully tamped down the first surge of infections, has emerged as the new coronavirus epicentre in recent weeks and is reporting on average 140,000 cases a day over the past week.

As a region, Europe is reporting more daily cases than India, Brazil and the United States combined.

Of every 100 infections reported around the world, 34 were from European countries, according to a Reuters analysis.


Beheaded French teacher was target of angry social media campaign

Samuel Paty, the teacher beheaded outside his school in a Paris suburb, was described by his pupils and their parents as caring and professional. But he was killed after becoming the target of an angry campaign on social media.

Paty, 47, was killed on Friday by an 18-year-old man of Chechen origin.

Prosecutors said the attacker, shot dead by police soon after, wanted to punish the teacher for showing his pupils cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in a civics class on freedom of expression earlier this month.


Anti-Trump women’s rallies draw thousands across the US

Thousands of protesters marched in Washington and elsewhere in the United States on Saturday to protest Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee and to call for his defeat in the November 3 election.

The rallies, which organisers said were taking place in all 50 states, were inspired by the first Women’s March in Washington, a huge anti-Trump rally held a day after his 2017 inauguration.

But in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, the demonstrations Saturday were considerably smaller.


Frozen food package tainted by living coronavirus could cause infection

China’s disease control authority said on Saturday that contact with frozen food packaging contaminated by living new coronavirus could cause infection.

The conclusion came as the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention detected and isolated living coronavirus on the outer packaging of frozen cod during efforts to trace the virus in an outbreak reported last week in the city of Qingdao.

The finding, a world first, suggests it is possible for the virus to be conveyed over long distances via frozen goods, it said.


China warns it may detain US citizens over scholar probes: Wall Street Journal

Chinese officials warned their US counterparts as early as the summer that they may detain Americans in China if the US does not stop prosecuting Chinese academics, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

China sent repeated warnings through multiple channels, including the US Embassy in Beijing, the report said.

The US charged several Chinese scientists who were conducting research at US universities with concealing ties to the Chinese military.


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