World News

Spain’s terror police chief, Jesus Gayoso, dies of coronavirus – 800 officers killed

He was head of the Civil Guard’s Rapid Action Group, which has become heavily involved in recent years in the fight against radical Islamic terrorism. Members of the special forces unit, which has also undertaken international missions in places like Kosovo and Haiti, arrested British fugitive Daniel Dobbs in January at his hideaway in Malaga.

The 32-year-old had gone missing from a South Yorkshire prison in November 2018 after being sentenced to 13-and-a-half years in jail in January 2014 for trafficking heroin and amphetamines.

He was held during a dawn raid linked to an operation against an illegal subterranean Costa del Sol cigarette factory he was suspected of running with another Brit.

Mr Gayoso, who had no known underlying health issues, had joined the unit he headed nearly 25 years ago.

The married dad-of-two started to feel unwell on March 8 and thought he had common flu. He is said to have been sent home after going to hospital four days later before being admitted to San Pedro Hospital in Logrono on March 17 in a serious condition.

He became the fourth Civil Guard to die of Covid-19. Nearly 800 Spanish police officers have died after testing positive for the virus.

The Civil Guard said in a tweet: “We regretfully confirm the death of Jesus, head of the force’s Rapid Action Group, victim of Covid-19.

“Our hearts are with his relatives, friends and colleagues. Rest in peace brother. We will never forget your example.”

Civil Guards were joined last night by National Police officers and emergency services workers in an emotional tribute outside the force’s HQ in Logrono.

After a round of applause they sang a hymn used to honour Armed Forces members who lose their lives in service. The Christian song translates in English as ‘Death Is Not The End.”

Members of Mr Gayoso’s unit were involved in making sure coronavirus sufferers in a northern Spanish town which was one of the first to be hit by a mass outbreak earlier this month, obeyed quarantine orders.

More than 30 people tested positive for the virus in Haro, which has a population of just over 12,000, after attending a gypsy funeral in the Basque capital Vitoria.

Police sources said he started to display the tell-tale symptoms of coronavirus before his officers were sent to Haro in hazmat suits. He is believed to have caught it during a work trip to Belgium at the start of the month.

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Coronavirus shock claim: Yanis Varoufakis reveals 2008 crisis NEVER ended

The eurozone was already in a weak state before the impact of coronavirus. Eurozone real GDP increased just 0.1 percent quarter on quarter and one percent year on year in the fourth quarter of 2019, resulting in its weakest performance in six years. Germany’s output was flat, while Italy and France suffered contractions.

Outside the eurozone, the UK economy also stalled in the fourth quarter.

IHS Markit expects the spreading virus to do serious damage to trade, travel and tourism and financial markets.

Italy is especially vulnerable, given its fragile economy, the high incidence of COVID-19, and resulting restrictions on activity.

As many economists wonder whether the coronavirus pandemic will be a rerun for Europe of the 2008 financial crash, leading economist and former Greek Financial Minister Yanis Varoufakis argued it would be a mistake to see the economic response to coronavirus in isolation, as the outbreak has merely deepened and accelerated a crisis that has never ended.

In a video posted on his YouTube channel DiEM25 last week, he said: “Don’t let anyone tell you that the 2008 crisis ended and that now you have a new one.

“That crisis never ended. It just moved in different forms, travelled from one continent to another.

“But nevertheless it has always been with us.

“The world never went back to some kind of equilibrium after 2008.

“What coronavirus has done, it has deepened and accelerated this never-ending non-stop crisis that began in 2008.”

Mr Varoufakis explained that the only reason why there has been a resemblance of recovery after 2011 is because central banks and governments took it upon themselves to reflect the financial markets.

He added: “They printed trillions and trillions of money and threw them at the 0.1 percent at corporations that were already full of money. For example, Apple, Google and so on.

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“They boosted inequality massively and stabilised financial markets. But at the same time, they depleted all serious investments in good quality jobs in labour. health, education.”

The expert noted: “This is why there has been so much discontent even before COVID-19 arrived on the scene.

“When coronavirus arrived on the scene it found a global capitalism that was sitting on a gigantic bubble of private debt that had been minted by central banks on behalf of financial capital.

“COVID-19 has pricked the bubble on which financial capitalism was sitting up until now.

“So even if the financial markets are eroded once more, the level of investment is going to be even lower than it was.”

Referring to the proposals of his political movement DIEM25 or Democracy in Europe Movement 2025, the former Finance Minister argued they have never been more pertinent and urgent than now.

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He said: “We need a common investment policy based on an alliance between the European investment bank and the European Central Bank.

“We need a universal basic dividend.

“We need a carbon tax and a social equity fund, the purpose of which will be to energise both private capital and public finance.

“We need public financial instruments in order to take the liquidity that exist in our financial circuits and put it into good use.

“Press them into public service in terms of public health, in terms of creating good quality jobs.

“The agenda of DIEM25 has never been more pertinent and has never been more urgent than today.”

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Coronavirus breakthrough as Russia pioneers way for one ventilator to treat FOUR patients

A top state doctor hailed the move as a Covid-19 game changer and they have developed a special filter system that prevents infections being passed from one patient to another.

Ventilators are vital for coronavirus sufferers and can make the difference between life and deathbed but they are in short supply in Britain and all countries hit by the virus. 

Professor Veronika Skvortsova, head of the Russian Federal Biomedical Agency, said: 

“We have managed to set up experimental devices that can ventilate two, three, four patients.”

Special bactericidal filters prevent bacteria or virus infections of any type of ventilator when it is shared  – and separately of the air tubes leading to each patient.

She claimed the method is more successful than Western attempts to use ventilators for more than one patient due to the unique  filter system which blocks 99.9 per cent of bacteria.

A video shows how she demonstrated the plastic filters on Russian state-controlled 1st channel insisting they were “safe”.


“We can see it here – this bactericidal filter provides 99.9 percent protection against bacteria and viruses,” she said. 

“This one ventilator works for four beds.”

A neurologist and former Russian health minister Dr Skvortsova said Moscow was was now going into mass production with the filters.

“In April, 80,000 sets will be developed, with all necessary filters for the devices and tubes going to the patient.

“From May we will switch to 200,000 per month.”

She said: “This system is compatible with both domestic and foreign ventilators and respiratory anaesthesia machines.”

The “breakthrough” was developed by Russia hi-tech state corporations Rostec and  Shvabe along with her biomedical agency, she said.

“It is important to note that the system we have created is universal,” she said.

“It is suitable for any model of mechanical ventilation device.”

The claim comes as Russia has banned traditional funerals for coronavirus victims where  the dead lie in open-topped coffins during the ceremony.

Coffins must be closed for those either confirmed by autopsy or suspected of dying from Covid-19,  ruled  the health ministry. 

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US trade war with China deepens as Trump refuses to reduce medical supply tariffs

In December, President Donald Trump agreed to a phase one agreement after a trade war with China. But according to former officials and analysts, the President’s concern was that emergency adjustments could undermine their position as Beijing’s contenders, which could give Trump a boost in the November elections.

Vanessa Sciarra, vice-president of trade and investment policy with the National Foreign Trade Council, said: “There will be inexorable pressure to relax the tariffs. But the administration is going to hold the line as long as they possibly can because they see this is so fundamental to their trade policy,

“There’s a lot of internal debate that you can’t give China something for nothing and how to go forward.”

In the December agreement, Trump advocated for a policy for settling disagreements that is “supposed to hold a stick over the Chinese,” she added.

“It undermines his whole plan if the US starts unilaterally undercutting the agreement.”

After claiming for weeks that the coronavirus was not a serious threat, President Trump has been compelled to make concessions on Chinese medical imports that were added to the Federal Register.

On March 10 and 12, the administration momentarily removed the tariffs on protective clothing including gloves and medical goggles.

On Friday night, The Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) introduced a feedback channel for medical provision importers that think tariffs should be relieved, saying : “This comment process does not replace the current exclusion process.”

Detractors agree that the levies should be slashed quickly. Chad Bown, an economist with the Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE), said: “If your strategy is to cut yourself off from China, which is the largest supplier of medical equipment, at this time of greatest need, that’s a big problem”.

Top officials in the Trump administration and Congress see the global crisis as a chance to debilitate international ties with China, decrease global trade movements and bestow blame on Beijing.

Recently, various Republican senators have proposed laws that aim to reduce America’s dependence on China.

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Detractors warn that applying high tariffs on Chinese medical supplies could have implications beyond the trade codes and potentially cost hundreds of lives.

Chad Brown added that insufficient US organisation “is a bit more self-inflicted because of the trade war,

“We put tariffs on all of those products.”

The March reductions excluded levies on few imported Chinese medical supplies.

US$1.1 billion of goods that could result helpful in battling the coronavirus are still under a 25 percent tariff.

“The US, I believe, was justified in adopting a much more aggressive policy toward China,” said Clete Willems, a partner in Washington with the law firm Akin Gump.

“But my worry is that we’re going too far,” he added. “Global problems require global solutions”

Ohio-based manufacturer Gojo industries is in dire demand as it produces dispenser for the Purell hand sanitiser, a key product to avoid spreading the virus.

Although the dispensers are made in the US, two of its main components are imported from China.

Nicole Bivens Collinson, head of international trade and government relations at the law firm representing Gojo, said: “They may be manufactured in the US, but it’s a global supply chain,

“We asked for an exemption. They denied it. This is for friggin’ hand sanitiser.”

Before the US-China trade war, American tariffs on around US$22 billion in imported medical supplies ranged from zero to under 8 percent.

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World News

‘There will be violence’ Terrifying prediction for world if coronavirus crisis continues

Jacob Wallenberg warned of the economic threat from measures taken by Governments in response to Covid-19. It comes as countries around the world have been put on lockdown in a bid to stop the spread of the virus.

Mr Wallenberg said if the crisis continues, unemployment could reach up to 30 percent and economies could contract by 30 percent.

He told the Financial Times: “There will be no recovery. There will be social unrest. There will be violence.

“There will be socio-economic consequences: dramatic unemployment.

“Citizens will suffer dramatically: some will die, others will feel awful.”

The industrialist added he wanted to spark a debate about the long-term consequences of the pandemic.

He said: “I am dead scared of the consequences to society.

“I want to put the view — what else can we do? Right now, we’re just going on one path.

“We have to weigh the risks of the medicine affecting the patient drastically.

“How does tomorrow look like? One of these days there is a tomorrow. We have to prepare ourselves as well.”

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It comes as more than 470,800 people across the world have been infected with coronavirus and over 21,200 have died.

US President Donald Trump has said he hopes the US will reopen by Easter.

He warned, if the country did not return to business, it could suffer “a massive recession or depression”.

Mr Trump said: “You’re going to lose people. You’re going to have suicides by the thousands. You’re going to have all sorts of things happen. You’re going to have instability.”

In a tweet, he added: “The LameStream Media is the dominant force in trying to get me to keep our Country closed as long as possible in the hope that it will be detrimental to my election success.

“The real people want to get back to work ASAP. We will be stronger than ever before!”

Meanwhile in the UK, where 463 people have died after testing positive for coronavirus, Boris Johnson imposed a police-enforced lockdown earlier this week.

The Government said it expects 10,000 coronavirus tests per day to be carried out by the end of this week despite testing just 6,643 on Wednesday.

There have been 9,529 confirmed cases of the virus in the UK, according to the latest figures.

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World News

Coronavirus ‘cure’ sparks anger as China promotes torturing bears to inject bile as remedy

The revelation comes after the Chinese government has outlined steps to permanently ban the trade and consumption of live wild animals for food within the world’s most populous country. The traditional remedy of using bear bile to treat COVID-19 appeared on a list of Chinese Medicine solutions for the most severe symptoms of coronavirus. The remedy is called Tan Re Qing.

The list was published on March 4 by China’s National Health Commission, the government body responsible for national health policy.

Traditional medicines containing threatened wildlife parts such as pangolin scales, leopard bones, saiga horn and the bile of captive-bred bears are still legal in China.

According to charity Animals Asia, the cages were the bears are incarcerated in China are sometimes so small that they are unable to turn around or stand on all fours.

Some are put into cages as cubs and never leave them.

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They may grow too large to fit through the cage door or remain stunted.

Animals Asia state: “Bears may be kept caged like this for up to 30 years.

“This has a terrible effect on the physical and mental wellbeing.”

The bear’s bile is harvested through invasive surgery, which causes “severe suffering, pain and infection.”

Aron White, Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) Wildlife Campaigner and China Specialist, said: “Restricting the eating of wildlife while promoting medicines containing wildlife parts exemplifies the mixed messages being sent by Chinese authorities on wildlife trade.

“Aside from the irony of promoting a wildlife product for treatment of a disease which the scientific community has overwhelmingly concluded originated in wildlife, the continued promotion of the use of threatened wildlife in medicine is hugely irresponsible in an era of unprecedented biodiversity loss, including illegal and unsustainable trade.”

According to Mr White, his organisation learned first about the Chinese government’s recommendations to treat COVID-19 via social media posts from illegal traders.

He said: “We were witnessing how this government recommendation was being coopted by the traffickers to advertise their illegal products as a treatment.”


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Illegal bile from wild bears is produced in China, he says, and is also imported from wild and captive bears in Laos, Vietnam, and North Korea.

The illegal trade persists even though Asiatic black bears, one of the species most commonly farmed for their bile, are protected from international commercial trade under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, which regulates cross-border trade of wildlife and wildlife products.

The bile is painfully tapped from the gallbladder of caged bears, who must undergow a slow painful death during the process to extract all of the bile.

The bile is secreted by the liver and stored in the gallbladder, bile from various species of bears, including Asiatic black bears and brown bears, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine since at least the eighth century.

It contains high levels of ursodeoxycholic acid, also known as ursodiol, which is clinically proven to help dissolve gallstones and treat liver disease.

But, ursodeoxycholic acid has been available as a synthetic drug worldwide for decades.

Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners typically use the Tan Re Qing remedy to treat bronchitis.

Clifford Steer, a professor at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, who has studied the subject, told National Geographic that there is no evidence that bear bile is an effective treatment for coronavirus.

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New York chief warns ‘any scenario’ will ‘overwhelm’ health system as US battles COVID-19

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said during a press conference on Thursday that his administration is scouting sites with the aim of increasing hospital capacity. He stated that any scenario is likely to overwhelm the healthcare system in New York.

Governor Cuomo said: “Any scenario that is realistic will overwhelm the current healthcare system.

“So, keep the curve down as low as you can.

“But you cannot get the curve down low enough that you don’t overwhelm hospital capacity.

“So, any of these scenarios, we have to increase the hospital capacity.

“That is why we are literally adding to the hospital capacity every way we can.

“We are also scouting new sites all across primarily the downstate area of this state.

“Our goal is to have a 1,000 plus overflow facility in each of the boroughs downstate.”

New York is in lockdown to try to halt the spread of the deadly virus.

Eerie pictures have emerged of popular tourist destinations standing empty – as people stay away to try to halt the spread of COVID-19.

At the time of writing the US has the third-highest amount of COVID-19 cases in the world. America has more than 75,000 cases of coronavirus.

The nation’s death toll is over 1,000. Just over 1,800 people have recovered from the virus in the US.

At the time of writing, Britain has the ninth highest amount of coronavirus cases in the world.

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The death toll in Britain is currently 477.  A total of 135 people have recovered from the coronavirus within the United Kingdom.

Earlier this week, the UK was placed into an effective lockdown to try to halt the spread of the deadly virus.

There have been over 510,000 cases of COVID-19 worldwide. The death toll has surpassed 23,000 people.

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Woman who purposely coughed on £30k of food arrested as terrorist using biological agent

Bosses at the store in the US said a woman carried out what they called a “very twisted prank” which forced owners to discard all of the items she came into contact with, which amounted to $35,000 (£28,500) of goods. Joe Fasula, the shops’ co-owner said throwing away the food made him feel sick to his stomach. The prank comes at a time when customers are rushing to stores to purchase groceries amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The woman walked into Gerrity’s Supermarket in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, at about 2.20pm on Wednesday before carrying out the apparent prank.

One of the shop workers noticed the woman coughing and spitting on the food items, prompting security to quickly escort her out of the store and contact the police.

She is also understood to have attempted to steal a 12 pack of beer.

Mr Fasula said he had little doubt the woman’s actions were intended as a joke, but he felt compelled to throw out the affected food and thoroughly disinfect the shelves over concerns for the health of other customers.

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Mr Fasula said: “The woman entered the store and proceeded to purposely cough on our fresh produce, and a small section of our bakery, meat case and grocery

“While there is little doubt this woman was doing it as a very twisted prank, we will not take any chances with the health and well-being of our customers.

“We had no choice but to throw out all product she came in contact with.

“Working closely with the Hanover Township health inspector, we identified every area that she was in, we disposed of the product and thoroughly cleaned and disinfected everything.

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“I’m also absolutely sick to my stomach about the loss of food.

“While it is always a shame when food is wasted, in these times when so many people are worried about the security of our food supply, it is even more disturbing.”

On Twitter, the store added: “It truly saddens us. We are doing our best to provide everyone a safe environment & the items they need during this time including our seniors & those who are immunocompromised.”

A 35-year-old woman has been arrested in connection with the incident.

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Police will test her for coronavirus.

Hanover Township Police Department said the woman had been charged with terrorist threats, threatening to use a “biological agent”, criminal mischief, attempting to commit retail theft, and disorderly conduct.

They said in a statement: “Police were called to the business after a woman entered the store making verbal threats that she was sick while intentionally coughing and spitting saliva/bile on produce/meat/merchandise.

“The woman continued this behaviour in several aisles before attempting to steal a 12 pack of beer as she was being ordered to leave the store by employees.”

On Friday the US overtook China as the country with the most confirmed cases, with more than 85,500 positive tests.

According to the latest figures collated by Johns Hopkins University, the US has overtaken China (81,782 cases) and Italy (80,589).

But the US does not have the greatest death toll, at 1,300 COVID-19 related fatalities, the US still trails behind Italy (8,215), Spain (4,365) and China (3,292).

How are you coping with the coronavirus lockdown? What are you doing to keep yourself entertained in these difficult times? How are you helping your local community, or has someone in the local community been helping you? Send your stories, pictures and videos to [email protected]

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New York borders to CLOSE: Donald Trump considers state ‘quarantine’ as cases surpass 52k

As the coronavirus crisis in New York worsens, Donald Trump has suggested that the entire state may have to be quarantined soon. The state has the highest number of cases of COVID-19 in the USA. As of Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo said that over 500 people from the area had died from the disease.

President Trump told the press: “I just spoke with Andrew Cuomo, I just spoke with Rhonda Sanchez, we’re thinking about certain things.

“Some people would like to see New York quarantined because it’s a hotspot.

“New York, New Jersey, maybe one or two other places, certain parts of Connecticut.

“I’m thinking about that right now.”

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He continued: “We might not have to do it but there’s a possibility that some time today we’ll do a quarantine short-term two weeks.

“On New York, probably New Jersey and certain parts of Connecticut.

“We’ll restrict travel because they’re having problems down in Florida.

“A lot of New Yorkers are going there and we don’t want that.”

The American leader added: “We’re having a really good dialogue with Governor Cuomo.

“We’ve supplied him with a lot of things, we’re giving him an extra four medical centres, tents.

“That’s beyond what we’ve already given him.”

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French IGNORE coronavirus lockdown – curfews, £3600 fines and jail time now tabled

On March 17, President Emmanuel Macron announced a 14-day nationwide lockdown to try and contain the outbreak of COVID-19. With the virus continuing to spread, the Government introduced measures forcing the public to stay close to their homes while open-air markets were also closed on Tuesday. Despite the enforcement of the lockdown, France’s director-general for civil security and crisis management, Alain Thirion revealed there had been 91,824 breaches of the containment measures since Tuesday.

On Sunday, there were also 22,574 warnings issued despite the enforcement of measures to stop non-essential movement.

Earlier this week, Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe said the lockdown could be extended by several weeks in order to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Mr Philippe also warned a national curfew could be imposed if the violations continue going forward.

He said: “A lot of citizens want normalcy to return, but it’s not happening soon.

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“We feel the lockdown measures we have taken, and which we will toughen yet again, could last several weeks.

“We do not want to put a national curfew in place.

“And we will not hesitate, where necessary, to take tougher measures, meaning curfew measures.”

Under the measures, anyone who refuses to follow the movement restrictions will now face a €3,960 fine (£3,625), an increase from €135 (£123).

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There will also be the threat of a six-month prison term if there are repeated breaches under the country’s emergency health bill.

At the time of writing, there have been 25,233 cases of COVID-19 in the country.

There have been 1,331 deaths in France and such is the crisis, leader of National Rally, Marine Le Pen, insisted a nationwide curfew must be initiated.

She told French news channel, LCI: “The government must impose a national 8pm curfew.

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“The confinement will only work if everyone follows the rules.”

Although the lockdown was initially intended to last for 14 days, there are fears within the country it could be extended to six weeks.

The country’s scientific council said an extension of the containment measures could be carried out as the number of cases continues to rise each day.

French Health Minister, Olivier Veran said: “The members of the scientific council aren’t able to say with precision if the confinement should be for such a set duration.

“They said, maybe we need to prepare for the confinement to last longer.

“Beyond 15 days we know, but perhaps it could extend past that – another five or six weeks.

“It will only end when the epidemic curve allows it, this is the basic principle. Confinement has a purpose, to protect the French people.

“It will last as long as it has to last.”

Additional reporting by Maria Ortega.

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