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Coronavirus UK LIVE: Deaths hit 36,393 as Boris Johnson aide breaks lockdown rules and bank holiday flouters warned

People breaching the coronavirus lockdown over May bank holiday weekend have been warned they could drag Britain back to “square one”.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said those who continue to ignore restrictions this weekend risk returning the UK back weeks as he pleaded with Brits to be sensible, despite the weather forecast.

The UK death toll now stands at 36,393 after another 351 people died in the last 24 hours – meaning a total of 254,195 people have now tested positive for coronavirus.

But Boris Johnson’s chief-of-staff Dominic Cummings is in hot water with the police after breaking the lockdown rules to stay with his parents 250 miles from his London home.

Meanwhile, Home Secretary Priti Patel has revealed that international arrivals into the UK will have to self-isolate for 14 days to limit the spread of the virus from June 8 and will have to provide information as to where they will be quarantining.

But air bridges are still on the table, according to Ms Patel, with the isolation rules to be reviewed every three weeks.

Wetherspoons have today unveiled plans for when its chain of pubs reopen when lockdown is eased, including reduced menus and extra measures for staff.

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MEXICO RECORDS RECORD JUMP IN VIRUS DEATHS

Mexico reported 479 coronavirus-related deaths on Friday – the highest number of deaths seen in a single day.

This brings the country’s death total to 6,989.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Mexico has continued to climb over the past week, with numbers reaching 62,527 on Friday.

BUS FARES REINTRODUCED IN LONDON FROM SATURDAY

Charging for bus travel in London will resume on Saturday, Transport for London (TfL) has announced.

The requirement to touch in a contactless, Oyster or concessionary card when boarding will initially be required on 85 routes served by single-door and New Routemaster buses.

It will be rolled out across all buses “once further safety measures have been introduced to protect bus drivers”.

Twenty-nine London bus drivers have died after being infected with coronavirus, according to TfL.

Passengers have not needed to present their payment card since April 20 in a bid to boost the safety of drivers.

But the Government is requiring TfL to resume the collection of bus fares as part of the £1.6 billion bailout agreed last week.

PUBS TO MISS OUT ON ‘MILLIONS OF EXTRA PINTS OF BEER SALES’ OVER BANK HOLIDAY

Pubs will miss out on sales of 10 million extra pints of beer over the bank holiday weekend because of the continued lockdown, it has been estimated.

The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) said pubs would have been packed on a normal late May Bank Holiday, with good weather forecast, and the FA Cup final usually held on the Saturday.

The trade body noted that pubs were the first businesses to be ordered to shut down by the Government in March and could be among the last to re-open.

The BBPA said not all pubs will reopen from July as many won’t be able to meet the social distancing measures required by then.

Ensuring a distance of two metres will be impossible for some pubs, keeping them closed for much longer, said the BBPA.

PEOPLE URGED TO KEEP AWAY FROM UK BEACHES OVER BANK HOLIDAY WEEKEND

People are being urged to stay away from beaches over the bank holiday weekend when England is expected to bask in dry, sunny weather.

Pictures of crowds flocking to beaches in Brighton and Southend in recent days have raised fears over social distancing, and councils with responsibility for beauty spots around England are warning people to stay away.

Following the easing of some lockdown measures last week, there are no restrictions on how far people can go to get to the countryside, National Parks and beaches in England.

UNIVERSAL ORLANDO TO BEGIN PHASED REOPENING JUNE 5

Universal Orlando Resort will begin a phased reopening on June 5, nearly three months after closing down because of the coronavirus pandemic, the company announced Friday.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis approved the reopening plan Friday with the recommendation of Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings, according to a Universal news release.

Park officials had presented details of their plan to the county a day earlier.

The plan includes the reopening of Universal Studios Florida, Universals Islands of Adventure and Universals Volcano Bay.

AERIAL VIEW OF AN AREA AT THE NOSSA SENHORA APARECIDA CEMETERY WHERE NEW GRAVES HAVE BEEN DUG IN MANAUS, BRAZIL

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PEER-REVIEWED DATA SHOWS GILEAD’S DRUG EFFECTIVE AGAINST COVID-19 – NIH

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) said on Friday peer-reviewed data published in the New England Journal of Medicine from a trial testing Gilead Sciences Inc’s Remdesivir showed the drug was superior to the standard of care for COVID-19.

Last month, the NIH announced early data from the study, which began in February with 1,063 participants in 10 countries

BRAZIL RISES TO NO.2 IN CORONAVIRUS CASES AND SUFFERS 1,001 NEW DEATHS

Brazil overtook Russia on Friday in terms of the number of coronavirus cases, having registered 330,890 people who have contracted the virus, second only to the United States.

Brazil registered 1,001 daily coronavirus deaths on Friday, taking total deaths to 21,048, according to the health ministry.

However the true number – both of cases and deaths – is likely higher as Latin America’s top economy has been slow to ramp up testing.

COVID-19 INFECTION RATE UNCHANGED AS 351 MORE DEATHS IN UK

The UK’s speed of infection or R number has remained the same for the second week.

Scientific advisers to the government said the rate is between 0.7 and 1 – the same as last Friday.

The number remains higher than the first few weeks when the lockdown was implemented when it was 0.5 to 0.9.

U.S JUSTICE DEPARTMENT BACKS LAWSUIT CHALLENGING ILLINOIS CORONAVIRUS RESTRICTIONS

The Trump administration on Friday weighed in on a legal challenge brought against Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker’s coronavirus stay-at-home orders, filing a statement of interest in federal court in support of the lawsuit.

The U.S. Justice Department filing raised objections to the Democratic governor’s action on Thursday removing the case against him from state court, where it was filed by Republican state Representative Darren Bailey, to a federal court.

MEXICO SAYS IT HAS AVOIDED CORONAVIRUS ‘DELUGE’ EVEN AS CASES MOUNT

Mexico’s government said on Friday it had the coronavirus outbreak under control even as the country becomes one of the global hotspots for the pandemic.

The health ministry had forecast the outbreak could peak two weeks ago, but Mexico has posted its highest totals of deaths and infections in the past two days, trailing only the United States and Brazil for fatalities on Wednesday and Thursday.

“My grandparents were admitted the day before yesterday and they haven’t given us any information,” said 24-year-old Tania Gonzalez, as she stood outside a public hospital in Mexico City.

“We’re worried. We don’t know if they’re dead, alive, if they’re being treated, what sort of state they’re in.”

FORMER MINISTER ANNA SOUBRY CALLS GOVERNMENT ‘ARROGANT AND ELITIST’

Former Conservative minister Anna Soubry has called the Government “arrogant and elitist” following claims Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s senior adviser Dominic Cummings breached lockdown rules by visiting his parents’ home.

She said on Twitter: “All I can think of is all those people who kept to the rules and didn’t say farewell or hold the hand of a dearly loved family member before they died nor attend their funeral.

“The Government has been consistent – do as we say not as we do. Arrogant and elitist.”

CUBA CREDITS TWO DRUGS WITH SLASHING CORONAVIRUS DEATH TOLL

Cuba said this week that use of two drugs produced by its biotech industry that reduce hyper-inflammation in seriously ill COVID-19 patients has sharply curbed its coronavirus-related death toll.

Health authorities have reported just two virus-related deaths over the past nine days among more than 200 active cases on the Caribbean’s largest island, a sign they may have the worst of the outbreak under control.

The government, which hopes to increase its biopharmaceutical exports, has touted various drugs it produces for helping prevent infection with the new coronavirus and treating the COVID-19 disease it causes.

US – FEDERAL PRISON SYSTEM TO BEGIN MOVING NEARLY 7K INMATES

The federal Bureau of Prisons will begin moving about 6,800 inmates who have been waiting in local detention centres across the U.S. to federal prisons to avoid jail overcrowding in the coronavirus pandemic, officials said today.

It’s not clear when it would begin.

The inmates will be sent to one of three designated quarantine sites FCC Yazoo City in Mississippi, FCC Victorville in California and FTC Oklahoma City or to a Bureau of Prisons detention centre.

All the inmates who are being moved will be tested for COVID-19 when they arrive at the Bureau of Prisons facility and would be tested again before they are moved to the prison where they would serve their sentence.

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AER LINGUS TO LAY OFF WORKERS AFTER WAGE SUBSIDY SCHEME EXPIRES – UNION

Irish airline Aer Lingus intends to lay off staff after a Government wage subsidy scheme expires next month, a trade union said.

It has been buffeted by the coronavirus crisis which has devastated the aviation industry.

Forsa official Angela Kirk represents cabin crew and other grades and said the national carrier’s plans were premature.

“The effect of Covid-19 is not just an issue for Aer Lingus and its staff.

“It’s the most significant crisis for the entire Irish aviation industry in a generation, with the potential to adversely affect the commercial connectivity of the country.

“To act unilaterally now, and to abandon the efforts to negotiate a solution to the current crisis, and plan for a future recovery, is to squander the time remaining to negotiate real solutions.”

CHECHEN OFFICIAL DENIES REPORT LEADER HAS COVID-19 SYMPTOMS

A top official of Chechnya on Friday denied reports in state media that the region’s president, Ramzan Kadyrov, was hospitalised with suspected COVID-19 symptoms.

The reports Thursday cited an unidentified medical source as saying Kadyrov had been flown to Moscow and was being monitored by doctors.

But Chechen parliament speaker Magomed Daudov, who also heads the republic’s coronavirus task force, said on Instagram: “I declare that our head of the republic, Ramzan Kadyrov, is healthy (and ) what they write and say about him is all untrue, according to state news agency RIA-Novosti.”

PM JOHNSON PLANS TO CUT HUAWEI’S INVOLVEMENT IN UK’S 5G NETWORK

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is planning to reduce Chinese telecoms equipment maker Huawei Technologies Co Ltd’s involvement in Britain’s 5G network in the wake of the coronavirus crisis, the Daily Telegraph newspaper reported.

CALLS FOR DOMINIC CUMMINGS TO RESIGN AFTER REPORTS HE BROKE LOCKDOWN RULES

Calls have been made for Dominic Cummings to resign from his role as chief adviser to the Prime Minister after reports emerged he broke lockdown rules by travelling 260 miles from his London home.

In a joint investigation, the Mirror and the Guardian reported that police intervened after receiving a tip-off that Mr Cummings had travelled to his family home in County Durham to self-isolate, despite Boris Johnson having declared a lockdown in England days beforehand.

At the same time as the UK Government was instructing people to remain home – with fines in place for those contravening the rules – Mr Cummings reportedly decided to escape the capital.

SOUTH AMERICA A NEW COVID EPICENTRE – WHO

South America has become a new epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic with Brazil hardest-hit, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said today.

Dr. Mike Ryan, WHO’s top emergencies expert, speaking earlier to a news conference, said: “In a sense South America has become a new epicentre for the disease.”

Brazil is the “most affected,” and authorities there have approved broad use of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine for treatment of COVID-19, he said.

He reiterated that clinical evidence does not support the drug’s widespread use against the disease, given its risks.

CANADA TO RAMP UP COVID-19 TESTING AND TRACING

Canada will ramp up COVID-19 testing and contact tracing as it gradually lifts restrictions and is working closely with Apple Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google on a mobile phone app to help, the prime minister said on Friday.

In his daily news conference, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the federal government was already helping Ontario, the most populous province, with contact tracing and was open to do the same for the other 12 provinces and territories.

Businesses and citizens “need to know that we have a coordinated approach to gradually reopen that is rooted in science, evidence and the ability to rapidly detect and control any future outbreaks,” Trudeau said.

AIRLINE DELTA TO PROVIDE CARE KITS CONTAINING MASKS TO PASSENGERS

Delta Air Lines Inc said on Friday a care kit containing a disposable face mask and a Purell hand sanitiser gel will be available on request at ticket counters and gates by June 5.

As U.S. states start to reopen, airlines have urged a standard set of safety rules across the industry, which is bleeding cash after the coronavirus crisis decimated air travel demand.

In early May, Delta began requiring that all customers wear face coverings during travel.

BORIS JOHNSON’S TOP AIDE DOMINIC CUMMINGS EXAMINED BY COPS FOR BREAKING LOCKDOWN RULES TO STAY WITH PARENTS 250 MILES AWAY

Boris Johnson’s top aide Dominic Cummings was investigated by cops for breaking the Government’s own lockdown rules.

The PM’s chief-of-staff travelled more than 250 miles from his London home to stay with his parents in Durham.

More on the story here.

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Get the latest coronavirus news, facts and figures from around the world – plus essential advice for you and your family.

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