Pandemic’s Wave Of Devastation Hits Latin American Cities Where Death Rates Are Spiking
News on the global outbreak is reported from Peru, Brazil, Ecuador, Israel, Italy, France, Britain, Spain, Germany, Thailand, South Korea, New Zealand, Yemen and Japan.
The New York Times:
Coronavirus Outbreak In Latin America Now Rivals Europe’s. But Its Options Are Worse.
Deaths doubled in Lima, rivaling the worst month of the pandemic in Paris. They tripled in Manaus, a metropolis tucked deep in Brazil’s Amazon — a surge similar to what London and Madrid endured. In Guayaquil, a port city in Ecuador, the sudden spike in fatalities in April was comparable to what New York City experienced during its worst month: more than five times the number of people died than in previous years. (Kurmanaev, Andreoni, Casado and Taj, 5/12)
The Associated Press:
As Europe Reopens, Key Virus Protections Are Still Elusive
Italy’s virus reopening was supposed to be accompanied by a series of measures to limit infections in the one-time epicenter of Europe’s pandemic: the distribution of millions of inexpensive surgical masks to pharmacies nationwide, a pilot project of 150,000 antibody tests and, eventually, the roll-out of a contact-tracing app. None of these is in place as Italy experiments with its second week of loosening restrictions and looks ahead to Monday’s reopening of shops and in some regions, bars and restaurants. (Winfield and Corbet, 5/13)
The New York Times:
In Israel, Modern Medicine Grapples With Ghosts Of The Third Reich
The explosion flung him skyward, legs first, before he crashed to the ground. It was June 2002, at the height of the second Palestinian intifada. Dvir Musai, then a 13-year-old Israeli schoolboy from a religious Jewish settlement, was on a class cherry-picking trip in the southern West Bank. On his way back to the bus, he stepped on a mine laid by Palestinian militants and was gravely wounded, along with two other boys. “There was a lot of smoke, clumps of earth falling, a smell of burning and gunpowder,” Mr. Musai, now 31, recalled. (Kershner, 5/12)
Thailand Reports No New Coronavirus Cases For First Time Since March 9
Thailand, the first country outside China to discover a case of the new coronavirus, reported no new daily cases for the first time in two months on Wednesday as the government considered easing more restrictions on businesses. (5/13)
The Wall Street Journal:
‘What If My Family Found Out?’: Korea’s Coronavirus Tracking Unnerves Gay Community
As he entered a nightclub here recently, John Choi subjected himself to the coronavirus protocol: He wore a face mask, got his temperature checked and grabbed a pen to jot down his information at the door. But when he glanced at the sign-in sheet, he saw celebrity names that he assumed to be fake. His fellow clubgoers had reason to be coy: They were largely from South Korea’s LGBT community, where many still conceal that side of their identities from family and colleagues because they fear they will be stigmatized in a society that often clings to traditional ideas of gender and sexuality. (Yoon and Martin, 5/12)
The Associated Press:
Asia Today: New Zealand Has No New Cases For 2nd Day
New Zealand reported zero new cases of the coronavirus on Wednesday, the second day in a row without any new cases and the fourth day since early last week. Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield said it was encouraging news as the country prepares to ease many of its lockdown restrictions from midnight. Most businesses, including malls, retail stores and sit-down restaurants, will be able to reopen. Social distancing rules will remain in place and gatherings will be limited to 10 people. (5/13)
Exclusive: As COVID-19 Cases In Yemen Surge, Some Sources See Undercounting
Yemen has more suspected coronavirus cases and deaths than the authorities have so far reported, four sources familiar with the matter told Reuters, as the United Nations warned the virus is spreading in the war-ravaged country. (Yaakoubi, 5/13)
The Washington Post:
Japan Has Version Of Trump Vs. Cuomo. It's Abe Against Tokyo's Governor Koike.
It's a struggle that Americans will recognize — a national leader desperately focused on the economy against a governor whose popularity has soared with attempts to bring the coronavirus under control. Japan has its own version. Playing the role of President Trump is Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whom critics accuse of dithering in the face of the virus threat in a mistaken attempt to evade economic pain. (Denyer and Kashiwagi, 5/13)