Typhoon Haishen: Japan escapes worst as storm barrels towards South Korea

South Korea is bracing for the arrival of Typhoon Haishen, after the powerful storm battered Japan’s southern islands but appeared to pass through without major damage or casualties. The storm, carrying top sustained winds of up to 144 km/h (90 mph), was headed north toward South Korea’s second largest city of Busan, the country’s weather agency said. High winds have already cut power to almost 5,000 households in the southern tip of the Korean peninsula, including the resort island of …

Coronavirus live news: Europe sees increase in infections among younger people, says WHO chief

7.56am EDT 07:56 Four members of a dwindling tribe in India’s far off Andaman Islands have tested positive for coronavirus, officials said on Thursday as the country reported 75,760 new infections, the highest-single-day rise. The Great Andamanese are one of the six tribes of Mongoloid and African origin, who have lived in the Andamans in the Bay of Bengal for thousands of years. Only about 50 members survive, after thousands were killed by British colonisers in the 19th century or …

Case of man reinfected with coronavirus stokes immunity fears

A young man has been diagnosed with coronavirus more than four months after he recovered from a first episode of the disease, suggesting that immunity to the virus can be short-lived and raising more questions about vaccines against Covid-19. The case in Hong Kong is the first lab-confirmed reinfection. Genetic sequencing by scientists at the University of Hong Kong established that the second episode, in an otherwise healthy young man, was caused by a slightly different strain. Researchers had hoped …

Coronavirus live news: US death toll passes 170,000, New Zealand postpones election

  Thailand’s economy suffered its worst contraction since the Asian financial crisis more than two decades ago, data showed today, as the coronavirus shattered the country’s crucial tourism industry. The kingdom has largely escaped the worst of the disease – registering 3,300 cases and 58 deaths despite being the first country outside China to register an infection in January.   But pandemic-spurred lockdowns brought the economy to a staggering halt, shrinking 12.2 percent in the second quarter growth, according to …

Hong Kong’s independent press faces dark chapter in China’s shadow

On Monday when Zoe*, a local news reporter at Apple Daily returned to her office in Hong Kong it was swarming with police officers. Her boss, the strident pro-democracy activist, media mogul and billionaire Jimmy Lai, was in handcuffs as police led him through the newsroom. Cordons were set up blocking journalists from their desks as police rifled through papers and packed 25 boxes of documents for further investigation. Zoe was ordered to tell the police her home address and …