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Experts assess AstraZeneca blood clot reports.

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Accessed on 16 March 2021, 1149 UTC, Post 1078.


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Russ Roberts

BBC News World

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  1. Video content

    Video caption: Thousands left digging out after blizzards blanket the Rockies with deep snow

    Heavy snowfalls cut power across the Rockies and the intense low pressure system responsible now moves east, threatening tornadoes, large hail and severe thunderstorms.

  2. Zimbabwe receives second batch of Sinopharm vaccine

    Zimbabwe on Tuesday received a second batch of Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccines.

    It includes a Chinese donation of 200,000 doses and 144,000 doses bought by the government, and comes four weeks after the arrival of the first batch.

    President Emmerson Mnangagwa was at the airport in the capital, Harare, to receive the consignment, according to state media.

    The ministry of information has tweeted a video of the arrival of the consignment.

    Zimbabwe has so far confirmed 36,504 cases of coronavirus and 1,504 deaths since the pandemic started.

    It launched its Covid-19 vaccination campaign last month and aims to vaccinate 10 million people.

  3. Rwanda eases Covid-19 restrictions

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    Rwandas Minister of Health and doctor Daniel Ngamije receives the first injection of Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at the Masaka Hospital in Kigali, on March 5, 2021.
    Image caption: Rwanda has received more than 340,000 doses of Covid vaccines

    Rwanda has eased some of its restrictive measures against the spread of coronavirus, including a reduction of night curfew hours.

    In a statement on Monday night, the government reduced the curfew by two hours and it will now run from 21:00 to 04:00 local time - with businesses required to close by 20:00.

    Movement between the capital, Kigali, and the rest of the country resumed on Tuesday, apart from three districts of the southern and eastern provinces.

    Physical meetings have also resumed but should not exceed 30% of the venue capacity, but all bars remain closed.

    The country's health ministry has so far announced more than 20,000 cases of Covid-19 infections and 282 deaths.

    Meanwhile more than 257,000 people have got the first jab of Covid vaccine.

    Early this month, Rwanda received more than 340,000 doses of Pfizer and Oxford-AstraZeneca doses through the global Covax initiative.

  4. Women's History Month: The story of Dorset's Mabel Stobart

    Video content

    Video caption: Mabel Stobart was the first woman to achieve the rank of Major in any national army.
  5. US to train Mozambique troops fighting insurgents

    BBC World Service

    US Special Forces take part in the training of Mozambican troops
    Image caption: The training of Mozambican troops (pictured) will prioritise civilian protection

    American special operations forces are to spend two months training troops in Mozambique to try to prevent the spread of Islamist militant violence in the north of the country.

    Insurgents have staged regular attacks in the gas-rich Cabo Delgado province since 2017, leaving at least 2,500 people dead and half a million displaced.

    In response, Mozambique has turned to private military companies but rights groups have accused mercenaries and government forces of abuses, including shooting civilians.

    The US embassy said the training programme would prioritise civilian protection, human rights and community involvement to help combat what it called Islamic State in Mozambique.

  6. German summit on hold before vaccine update: Latest in Europe

    Health workers prepare syringes with the AstraZeneca vaccine against Covid-19 at a new vaccination centre inside the former Tempelhof airport in Berlin, Germany March 8, 2021
    Image caption: German leaders have postponed a key summit on the next steps in their vaccination campaign

    With vaccinations of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine on hold in much of Europe, European eyes are now on the EU’s medicines regulator EMA, which has so far insisted it’s safe and should still be used. EMA safety experts are reviewing latest information today and will update their advice on Thursday. Latvia, Slovenia and Cyprus have become the latest to suspend use of the jab.

    German vaccination summit of federal and state leaders planned for tomorrow has been postponed until the EMA updates its advice. Meanwhile, Germany’s public health agency has warned that infections there are rising exponentially.

    France’s health authorities are investigating a new Covid variant at the centre of a cluster of cases in Lannion in Brittany. Several people have shown symptoms of the variant which does not show up in a normal PCR test. President Emmanuel Macron says new measures will be taken in the coming days to fight the spread of Covid.

    The Norwegian capital Oslo is closing all middle and high schools and put a two-person limit on visits to people’s homes amid record Covid infections. "We have never before seen such a high level of recorded cases," said mayor Raymond Johansen.

    Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas has tested positive for Covid and has begun self-isolating. She said on Facebook she was closely monitoring her health and staying home but still carrying out her duties.

    Children’s swimming lessons are being allowed in the Netherlands from this morning for the first time since December. Limited outdoor exercise is also being allowed at sports facilities for adults over 27.

  7. Sudan formally seeks expanded talks on Nile dam row

    The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam is a source of national pride for Ethiopia
    Image caption: Ethiopia sees the dam as critical to powering its economic dreams

    Sudan has formally requested for an expanded mediation team on the dispute over the mega dam that Ethiopia is building on the Nile River.

    Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has written to the UN, the Democratic Republic of Congo President Felix Tshisekedi, who is also the African Union (AU) chairman, the European Union and the US.

    In a statement, Mr Hamdok expressed concern over Ethiopia's declared intention to fill the dam for the second time in June "without a binding agreement between the three concerned countries".

    The Sudanese PM said the negotiations will "provide significant international and regional support and constitute the required guarantee to build confidence in the negotiations".

    Ethiopia, which sees the dam as critical for producing enough energy to power its economic dreams, opposes the additional mediators other than the African Union.

    Negotiations between the three concerned countries, Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia, over the dam have remained deadlocked over the years, despite mediation by different parties.

    Egypt has long opposed the construction of the dam on grounds that the dam would restrict the flow of water, which it relies on for nearly all its fresh water needs.

    Sudan, which sides with Egypt, could benefit from lesser flooding downstream, according to experts.

    Read more:

  8. Charity warns of child beheadings in Mozambique

    Video content

    Video caption: Islamist militants have forced thousands from their homes using intimidation and violence

    Islamist militants have forced thousands from their homes through intimidation and violence

  9. Kenya 'won't hand over' port to China to pay debt

    An oil tanker at port of Mombasa
    Image caption: The port of Mombasa is the busiest in the region

    Kenya's Finance Minister Ukur Yatani has denied reports that the country risks losing its main port to China should it fail to pay huge loans advanced for the construction of a new railway line.

    The new 472km (293 mile) railway cost close to three times the international standard and four times the original estimate.

    A local newspaper reported on Monday that Chinese lenders could take control of the port of Mombasa if Kenya defaults on the $3.2bn (£2.3bn) loan.

    But in a statement, the finance minister said "there is absolutely no risk of China or any other country taking over the port".

    He said the loans for the railway cannot "be paid through any other fund or any other entity without the approval of parliament".

    "The government of Kenya cannot and has not pledged public assets as security for a debt because such an action... only violates provisions of its existing loans agreements," Mr Yatani said.

  10. UN names Mauritanian to head Mali peace mission

    l-Ghassim Wane raises his hand while reciting the oath of office in 2016
    Image caption: El-Ghassim Wane will be UN's special envoy to Mali

    The UN has named Mauritanian diplomat El-Ghassim Wane as its special representative and head of the peace-keeping mission in Mali.

    Mr Wane has 25 years of experience in conflict prevention, mediation and peacekeeping, the world body announced on Monday.

    He is taking over from former Chadian Foreign Minister Mahamat Saleh Annadif.

    The Mauritanian served as assistant secretary-general for peacekeeping operations at the UN between 2016 and 2017 and later worked at the African Union (AU) up to 2019.

    In recent months, he led a team conducting an independent strategic review of the UN-led peacekeeping operation in South Sudan.

  11. Kenya-Somalia border row case starts despite protest

    Ferdinand Omondi

    BBC News, Nairobi

    The sea side in Lamu, Kenya
    Image caption: The case concerns a 62,000 sq miles (160,000 sq km) triangle in the Indian Ocean

    Hearing over the Kenya-Somalia sea border dispute at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) begun on Monday despite Kenya's absence.

    The case started with oral arguments by Somalia government's legal team .

    The ICJ has said it "regrets the decision of Kenya not to participate", but ruled to continue the hearing without the country's involvement.

    Somalia said Kenya's decision not to participate in the ICJ proceedings was "inconsistent with its obligations.. and rule of law."

    The bench also rejected Kenya’s request to address the council before the start of the hearings.

    Kenya had sought to address the court on why the country may not participate in the hearings of the case that started in 2014.

    Kenya accuses the ICJ of bias in the case, which concerns a 62,000 sq miles (160,000 sq km) triangle in the Indian Ocean.

    Somalia brought the case in 2014, saying the maritime frontier should follow on in the same direction as the land border, while Kenya argues that it has always been taken in a horizontal line from the point where the two countries meet at the coast.

    A map of Kenya and Somalia


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