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Latest on worldwide spread of the coronavirus

The first shipments of COVID-19 vaccine in the United States left on trucks and planes as it kicked off an effort to stop the pandemic, while surging cases prompted South Korea to shut schools and Japan to consider curbing a tourism campaign.


* For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread of COVID-19, open here in an external browser. * Eikon users, see COVID-19: MacroVitals here for a case tracker and summary of news.


* Germany will close most stores from Wednesday until at least Jan. 10, cutting short the busy Christmas shopping season, as it tries to rein in the spread of COVID-19.

* Italy plans to set up primrose-shaped pavilions in its artistic squares to dispense coronavirus vaccines, an official said on Sunday, a day after the country overtook Britain to report the highest official death toll from COVID-19 among European countries.

* Moscow will not impose a curfew or curb alcohol sales during the New Year holiday, despite a rise in coronavirus cases, the mayor of the Russian capital was quoted as saying by Interfax news agency.

* The Dutch government is set to decide on stricter measures to fight the coronavirus outbreak in the Netherlands on Monday.


* U.S. President Donald Trump suggested that senior White House officials would wait longer for COVID-19 vaccines hours after media outlets reported senior officials were to receive doses within 10 days.

* The first COVID-19 vaccines have landed on Canadian soil, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said, and some Canadians are expected to roll up their sleeves for a shot as soon as Monday.

* Brazil’s Supreme Court gave the country’s health minister 48 hours to fix the starting date for a national vaccination program to fight the world’s second-deadliest outbreak of coronavirus.


* New Zealand agreed to allow quarantine-free travel with Australia in the first quarter of 2021, nearly a year after it locked down its borders.

* India will deploy its vast election machinery to deliver 600 million doses of vaccines to the most vulnerable people in the next six to eight months through conventional cold chain systems, the expert leading the initiative said.


* Eswatini Prime Minister Ambrose Dlamini, who tested positive for COVID-19 four weeks ago, has died at age 52 after being hospitalised in neighbouring South Africa.

* Nigeria’s army headquarters was isolating due to a COVID-19 outbreak during an annual conference, a spokesman said.

* Bahrain said it had approved a COVID-19 vaccine developed by China National Pharmaceutical Group and launched online registration for the vaccine for citizens and residents.

* Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune made his first appearance on Sunday since being flown to a hospital in Germany 47 days ago after testing positive for coronavirus.