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 ‘2020’ remarks the circling return of epidemics after every 100 years. As every nation is involved in the epidemic economically, socially and culturally, so the pandemic seems like another World War. The crisis is alarming us the evolution of the traditional security issues. The COVID-19 attack has made the world nations shocked. Every nation is responding to the crisis differently according to their culture. So the national and international governance should take strategies on the basis of the nations’ culture and adaptation ability. The post-pandemic reconstruction cost depends on how innovative the taken strategies are during the pandemic. New Zealand reported zero cases on the 8th June,2020. Prime Minister Jasinda Ardern has been showing praiseworthy leadership by adopting decisions and implementing policies which are made on the New Zealanders culture. She announced a very effective four level alert system (prepare, reduce, resist and eliminate) and maintained a collaborative network. The concept of lockdown and quarantine referred to as ‘the Bubble’ to ensure peoples’ staying safe at home. This bubble concept is truly commendable as it is easier to understand and implement by the general population of the country. Surprisingly, the New Zealand government did not indicate the word lockdown and quarantine in the emergency crisis management initiatives as they can be hard nuts for their peoples. Jordan developed a well-formulated national preparedness and response strategy with maintaining a high level of awareness and determination among the citizens. As a result of an effective and intelligent leadership, the upper-middle status holding country announced a country curfew on 20th March evaluating the culture of the citizens. The country maintained a strict international travel ban and travel regulations during the early overseas transmission. These proved a very strong and appropriate measure in combating the war. Strong unity between federal and provincial authorities and impressive solidarity across the entire country made Canada’s COVID-19 responses successful. Canada, a middle power country, followed the travel ban recommendations of WHO appropriately and implemented large scale social programs such as the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit and Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. The laudable leadership of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his daily briefings spread divine influence on the Canadian people to fight against the coronavirus. Japan is an ideal model in this war situation. The country holds the largest number of old people in the world but the death rate is too low. Their behavioural culture made it possible. The Japan government’s request to stay at home turned the picture of the country into a lockdowned area. The health researchers of the country informed about the ‘historical immunity’ the Japanese possess which battled strongly against the coronavirus within their body. Surprisingly, the government took no measure to ensure social distancing and health security regulations in this crisis moment. The Japan Prime Minister Shinjo Abe proudly announced that Japanese culture of obedience made the ‘Japan Model’ in this war. New Zealand and Canada took lessons from the 2003 SARS outbreak. They used their health sector preparedness and response initiatives of 2003 to mitigate the damages of 2020. While Japan adopted necessary COVID-19 health regulations after the 1919 Flu pandemic and developed contact tracing systems after the 1950 TV pandemic. By contrast, the Trump Administration largely broke down the epidemic monitoring and command groups within the US National Security and Department of Homeland Security in 2018, set up by the Obama Administration after the 2014 Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa. Many countries in the world are dealing with such respiratory diseases for the first time and facing strategic gaps. Bangladesh faces such a health emergency crisis earlier and this global pandemic impacted largely the health, economic, political and social security sectors. In this emergency crisis the government took many initiatives to ensure the containment of COVID-19 but there are lackings in their implementation process. Adoption of the western concepts like lockdown and quarantine firstly failed the general less literate people to make understanding about social distancing and health regulations. The connectivity gap between the Prime Minister and the country people and the collaboration gap between public and private authorities are the main reasons for the strategic mistakes there. Experts recommended the decision makers and strategists to adopt strategies and policies on the basis of Bangladeshi culture and peoples’ response to the crisis.

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TEHRAN, 4 May 2020, TON: A Spokesman of Iran's Foreign Ministry said on Monday, “Iran is still prepared for prisoner exchange with the United States and European countries”.  Seyed Abbas Mousavi Spokesman of Iran's Foreign Ministry said, "We had announced our readiness both officially and through messages and even proposed to exchange certain prisoners some of which took place."

Abbas Mousavi added that nearly 20 Iranians are in detention in the United States "on false charges of trying to circumvent sanctions" and said Iran is prepared to work for resolving the situation.

In October 2019 Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif said Iran had made an offer of prisoner exchange with the United States through the Swiss Embassy in Tehran and submitted a list of Iranian prisoners in the United States for the exchange. However, there was no breakthrough in the talks.

In another development, confirming of some kind of deal with the US, Abbas Mousavi  said, “ Dr. Sirous Asgari, an Iranian scientist is in prison in the United States on the charges of stealing trade secrets,  has contracted the Coronavirus in prison.He will be tested again and  if his test is negative he will come back to Iran".

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GENEVA, 2 May 2020, TON:   World Health Organization (WHO) top emergencies expert Dr. Mike Ryan  said,  countries must lift lockdowns gradually, while still being “on the look-out” for COVID-19 and ready to restore restrictions if the virus jumps back. He said, vulnerable people in institutions, including those in long-term care facilities, prisons and migrant dormitories, must be protected and even if the virus is coming under control, communities must know to still follow physical distancing and hygiene measures, and testing of suspect cases must continue.

The virus has spread in facilities for the elderly in Europe and North America, while in Singapore it has infected migrant workers in dormitories, he said, adding: “Because a spark in a situation like that turns into a fire very very quickly.”

Ryan acknowledged the difficulty for governments to maintain lockdowns during the pandemic, “for social, psychological and economic reasons” and apologized for severe measures, “So we are very anxious that we can move to a situation where the disease can kept under control with less severe measures.”

He claimed that there are worrying trends of spread in countries from Haiti to Somalia and Yemen, Ryan said. He also cited Sudan, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan, Sierre Leone, Central African Republic, and a “serious cluster” in Kano, northern Nigeria. He clarified, regarding the new coronavirus that first emerged late last year in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, he reiterated that scientists examining its genetic sequences have assured the WHO that “this virus is natural in origin”.

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BERLIN, 30 April 2020, TON: Germany has banned Hezbollah activity on its soil and designated it a terrorist organization, the Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

Police also conducted early morning raids in four cities across Germany. Security officials believe up to 1,050 people in Germany are part of Hezbollah’s extremist wing.

Israel and the United States had been pushing Germany to ban the organization. Germany had previously distinguished between Hezbollah’s political arm and its military units, which have fought alongside President Bashar Assad’s army in Syria.

A spokesman said Interior Minister Horst Seehofer had banned the activities of Hezbollah. United States has already designated Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.

The European Union classifies Hezbollah’s military wing as a terrorist group, but not its political wing. American Jewish Committee head David Harris said in a statement, “We now hope other European nations will take a close look at Germany’s decision and reach the same conclusion about the true nature of Hezbollah,” said Harris.

Britain introduced legislation in February 2019 that classified Hezbollah as a terrorist organization Last year, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement that he hoped Germany would follow Britain in banning Hezbollah.

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CAPE TOWN, 27 April 2020, TON: South Africa celebrates its National Freedom Day on Monday, 27 April. The day commemorates with the first democratic elections held in South Africa on 27 April 1994.  These were the first post-apartheid national elections in which anyone could vote regardless of race. The 2020 National Freedom Day marks 26 years of freedom and democracy and getting rid from colonial and apartheid oppression, spanning over 400 years.

The year 2020 shepherded in with the COVID-19 challenge that has transformed things differently than what was practiced before.

Freedom Day 2020 is being reflected upon during a live stream today. The theme for this year’s Freedom Month celebrations is, “Solidarity and triumph of human spirit in this challenging times”. The President of South Africa is expected to address the nation.

 

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ROME, 25 April 2020, TON: Every year tens of thousands of people take to the streets of Italy's main cities, including Rome, Milan and Bologna, to mark the day. On Saturday, Italians waving national flags and singing the national anthem “Bella Ciao,” Sergio Mattarella, were seen in Rome and other cities. Italian President said while the Coronavirus had forced Italians to celebrate in their homes, remembering Italy’s partisans meant “reaffirming the values of freedom, justice, and social cohesion.

This year was different, though, as all public events were canceled because of the coronavirus outbreak and estimated 195,000 COVID-19 positives cases, 26,000 deaths and 63,000 recoveries in Italy as on 25 April 2020, Italians celebrated the 75th anniversary of Liberation Day and the end of World War II fascist rule under a national lockdown. Stranded at home, they went out on their balconies waving flags, singing, clapping and cheering. Among them were Italians leaders who participated in the resistance struggle movement in the 1940s against German occupation and fascist forces.

Some Italians celebrated the Feast of St Mark (La Festa di San Marco). In some Churches there were assemblies on Saturday, although the attendances were thin.  

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LONDON, 21 April 2020, TON: For the first time in 700-year history of UK parliament, the House of Commons convenes 'virtually' in London, on Tuesday, 21 April, amid COVID-19 pandemic.

Fifty MPs are expected to be in the chamber, maintain rules of social distancing and 120 online a 'hybrid' system. Screens will be placed around the chamber to allow the Speaker and the present MPs to see their virtually-present colleagues in zoom mode.

Parliament will debate coronavirus measures and authorize spending on the UK's pandemic response on 21 April. It will not be business as usual for MPs. MPs are due to debate a key piece of Brexit legislation, repealing EU free movement in UK law. The The government also needs to pass its Finance Bill, enacting measures in the Budget, which is due to get its second reading on 22 April.

Online 'hybrid' system is being used in efforts to allow MPs to work remotely.

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OTTAWA, 20 April 2020, TON:  A Canadian terrorist identified as Gabriel Wortman, wearing a law enforcement agency’s uniform, driving Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) cruiser, killed at least 18 people, including an officer with the RCMP.

Chief Superintendent RCMP of the Nova Scotia, Chris Leather said, Gabriel Wortman disguised as law enforcement stormed across Nova Scotia over a two-day period killing 16 people. The suspect left victims scattered across multiple crime scenes in different communities during a rampage that stretched from late Saturday into Sunday. Leather added that RCMP Constable Heidi Stevenson, 23-year veteran of the force, was killed and another officer was injured while pursuing the suspect. 51-year-old Gabriel Wortman, who owns denture clinics in Dartmouth and Halifax also set several buildings on fire before heading toward the port city of Halifax.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a statement on Sunday saying he was saddened to hear about the "senseless violence" in the Atlantic province. The international counter terrorist organizations are working to develop links of Gabriel Wortman with other terrorist organizations. 

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NEW YORK, 11 April 2020, TON: Secretary-General António Guterres said in a special message to religious leaders, “Today, I want to make a special appeal to religious leaders of all faiths to join forces to work for peace around the world and focus on our common battle to defeat COVID19. I do so at a special time on the spiritual calendar. For Christians, it is the celebration of Easter. Jews are marking Passover. And soon, Muslims will begin the holy month of Ramadan. I extend my warmest wishes to all those observing these important MOMENTS. We have always known these occasions to be moments of community. Of families coming together. Of hugs and handshakes and the gathering of humanity. But this is a time like no other. We are all seeking to navigate a strange, surreal world. A world of silent streets. Shuttered storefronts. Empty places of worship. And a world of worry. We are worried about our loved ones who are equally worried about us. How do we celebrate at a time like this? Let us all take inspiration from the essence of these holy occasions as moments for reflection, remembrance and renewal. As we reflect, let us spare a special thought for heroic health workers on the frontlines battling this awful virus – and for all those working to keep our cities and towns going. Let us remember the most vulnerable of the vulnerable around the world. Those in war zones and refugee camps and slums and all those places least equipped to fight the virus. And let us renew our faith in one another and draw strength from the good that is gathering in troubled times as communities of diverse faiths and ethical traditions unite to care for one another. Together, we can and will defeat this virus – with cooperation, solidarity, and faith in our common humanity.”

It is important to mention here that this month the holy month of Ramadam is commencing. The Muslims have been ordered to offer prayers in the Mosques, especially the 'Tarawi' are offered during Isha Prayers in which all the the whole Holy Quran is recited in the presence of the Muslims attending the prayers within the month time. The is followed by the Eid celebrations.

 

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PRETORIA, 2 April 2020, TON: The countries opposition leaders from Zimbabwe, Namibia, Malawi and Botswana claim that the donor countries are allowing food supplies to only on ethnic and religious grounds while other countries are being forced to have only masks and sprays to fight coronavirus COVID-19. Without naming any ethnic group or religion they claimed that for us only military operations have earmarked to carryout out ethnic and religious cleansing.

Meanwhile the United Nations food agency has negotiated a humanitarian corridor to keep food aid flowing in southern Africa after most countries shut their borders to stop the spread of coronavirus. The food agency has planned ship food supplies to South Africa from where it will move to countries including Zimbabwe, Namibia, Malawi, Botswana which face food shortages.

Media quoting Lola Castro, World Food Programme director for southern Africa saying, South Africa had agreed to let vessels carrying food aid land on its shores and move it to countries like Zimbabwe, Malawi, Botswana and Namibia, which face food shortages.Castro told reporters South Africa has agreed to "a sort of a humanitarian corridor" that would help the agency continue its work.

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RIYADH, 30 March 2020, TON, WHO: In response to an urgent appeal from the World Health Organization (WHO) and under the directives of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSrelief) has signed an agreement for USD 10 million in financial support to WHO for urgent action needed to minimize the spread of COVID-19 by supporting countries with vulnerable health infrastructures. The agreement was signed between KSrelief’s Assistant Supervisor General of Operations and Programs, Engineer Ahmed Al Baiz, and the WHO Country Representative for Saudi Arabia, Dr. Ibrahim El Ziq.

Dr. El Ziq, in a press statement following the signing of the agreement, said that “the ten million dollars provided by Saudi Arabia to the World Health Organization will contribute to the implementation of the COVID-19 National Health Plan. With this contribution, we will purchase preventive equipment for health workers, and laboratory equipment needed for investigations on the virus. The grant will also assist in carrying out scientific research towards developing a vaccine to prevent COVID-19, and will fund the purchase of medications to treat cases of the virus.” He ended his remarks by expressing his appreciation for the Kingdom’s generous ongoing support to crisis-affected countries around the world.

Dr. Abdullah Al Rabeeah, Supervisor General of KSrelief, stated that this royal directive reflected the Kingdom’s commitment to applying its significant resources to help alleviate the suffering of all in need. KSrelief, he added, continues to work in cooperation with United Nations agencies and other leading humanitarian organizations to safeguard public health and address a wide range of global humanitarian issues. Dr. Al Rabeeah added his appreciation for this generous gesture from the Kingdom’s leadership, which demonstrates its willingness to act quickly to support for the world community in times of urgent crisis.

Dr. Al Rabeeah also mentioned the extraordinary virtual G20 Summit meeting recently headed by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques; during this summit, the Kingdom also confirmed its commitment towards helping countries affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This leadership, he stated, demonstrated how seriously the Kingdom takes its responsibility to join with the rest of the world in fighting and overcoming the dangerous health and economic effects of COVID-19.

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MOGADISHU, 29 March 2020, TON: Somali government has sent 20 doctors to Italy to help contain the spread of COVID-19 amid a increase in deaths.

Somali government spokesman Ismail Mukhtar Omar said the doctors are volunteers from Somali National University, who have been in some European countries.

"The 20 doctors have already been registered in Italy and are expected to team up with some doctors from across the world to help Italy to contain the novel coronavirus," Omar said.

He said the doctors have been sent as part of emergency response team following appeal from the Italian government for international help to contain the virus.

Somalia has so far confirmed three cases of COVID-19, who were all returness from foreign countries. Accordingly, Somali Government has banned all international flights as well as domestic ones as part of the measures to contain the spread of the deadly virus in the country.  

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