Melania and Donald Trump clash over coronavirus masks as crisis intensifies

The First Lady is urging the public to follow the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendation for face masks to be worn in public. It came after her husband said that they were not mandatory and he would not be wearing one.

Melania tweeted to her followers that anyone who could should use the equipment when in public.

She wrote on Friday: “As the weekend approaches I ask that everyone take social distancing & wearing a mask/face covering seriously.

“COVID-19 is a virus that can spread to anyone.

“We can stop this together”.

The CDC issued their recommendation of face mask usage on Friday.

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The First Lady is urging the public to follow the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendation for face masks to be worn in public. It came after her husband said that they were not mandatory and he would not be wearing one.

Melania tweeted to her followers that anyone who could should use the equipment when in public.

She wrote on Friday: “As the weekend approaches I ask that everyone take social distancing & wearing a mask/face covering seriously.

“COVID-19 is a virus that can spread to anyone.

“We can stop this together”.

The CDC issued their recommendation of face mask usage on Friday.

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Her tweet came shortly after President Trump announced that his administration was recommending Americans wear homemade masks or face coverings.

He emphasized that the measures are “voluntary” and has said he won’t wear them, undercutting his wife and the CDC.

Trump said: “From recent studies we know that the transmission from individuals without symptoms is playing a more significant role in the spread of the virus than previously understood.

“I just don’t want to do it myself.

“Sitting in the Oval Office… I somehow don’t see it for myself.”

Americans are now advised to use clean cloth or fabric to cover their faces whilst in public.

Public use of masks can primarily help by preventing asymptomatic patients from unknowingly spreading the virus to others.

The World Health Organization previously advised that ordinary face masks are only effective if combined with careful hand-washing and social distancing.

Masks may also help lower the risk of individuals catching the virus through the droplets from another person’s sneeze or a cough.

Officials have stressed that medical masks remain in short supply, and should be left for healthcare workers.

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Officials have also cautioned that face masks should not be viewed as an “artificial sense of protection”.

Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, said this week: “The most important thing is the social distancing and washing your hands.

“We don’t want people to get an artificial sense of protection because they’re behind a mask. Because if they’re touching things — remember your eyes are not in the mask.

“So if you’re touching things and then touching your eyes you’re exposing yourself in the same way.”

The guidance comes after worldwide coronavirus cases have reached 1,201,476.

The US has the highest number of these cases, it has seen 311,357 since the outbreak began.

As of Sunday morning, it’s death toll from the virus has reached 8,452.

Government officials have warned that the next two weeks will be critical, likely seeing a sharp rise in cases and deaths.

Her tweet came shortly after President Trump announced that his administration was recommending Americans wear homemade masks or face coverings.

He emphasized that the measures are “voluntary” and has said he won’t wear them, undercutting his wife and the CDC.

Trump said: “From recent studies we know that the transmission from individuals without symptoms is playing a more significant role in the spread of the virus than previously understood.

“I just don’t want to do it myself.

“Sitting in the Oval Office… I somehow don’t see it for myself.”

Americans are now advised to use clean cloth or fabric to cover their faces whilst in public.

Public use of masks can primarily help by preventing asymptomatic patients from unknowingly spreading the virus to others.

The World Health Organization previously advised that ordinary face masks are only effective if combined with careful hand-washing and social distancing.

Masks may also help lower the risk of individuals catching the virus through the droplets from another person’s sneeze or a cough.

Officials have stressed that medical masks remain in short supply, and should be left for healthcare workers.

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Officials have also cautioned that face masks should not be viewed as an “artificial sense of protection”.

Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, said this week: “The most important thing is the social distancing and washing your hands.

“We don’t want people to get an artificial sense of protection because they’re behind a mask. Because if they’re touching things — remember your eyes are not in the mask.

“So if you’re touching things and then touching your eyes you’re exposing yourself in the same way.”

The guidance comes after worldwide coronavirus cases have reached 1,201,476.

The US has the highest number of these cases, it has seen 311,357 since the outbreak began.

As of Sunday morning, it’s death toll from the virus has reached 8,452.

Government officials have warned that the next two weeks will be critical, likely seeing a sharp rise in cases and deaths.

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New Labour Party leader warned of biggest challenge set to confront them ‘Just difficult’

The new Labour Party leader is to be announced this Saturday after longer than a month and a half of voting among party members. Shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer is expected to emerge the winner after facing off with shadow Business Secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey and Wigan MP Lisa Nandy. But former Downing Street adviser Nick Timothy warned Labour will face a huge struggle in winning back voters no matter who is proclaimed their next leader.

Speaking to ITV’s Robert Peston, Mr Timothy said: “Whoever is leader of the Labour Party will find it difficult to bring together the voters that they have retained who are the new core voters for Labour – public sector workers, urban voters, university towns – and the white working classes that they’ve lost in the regions and in Scotland and Wales.

“Those are big structural problems for Labour and I think it will be difficult for any individual to put that right quickly.”

The former adviser claimed Lisa Nandy was so far the only candidate who had shown an attempt to listen to voters lost since 2016.

He continued: “I think Lisa is the most interesting of the three candidates in the Labour leadership campaign to date.

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“She’s at least shown an interest in trying to get the Labour Party to listen to the voters they’ve lost in the period between the Brexit referendum and the General Election in December.

“Keir Starmer is a competent and intelligent person.”

Voting for the challenge is due to end on April 2, with the results set to be announced on Saturday.

Alongside the new leader, a new deputy leader is also due to be announced because of Tom Watson’s early departure from the job in December.

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Rebecca Long-Bailey confirmed all candidates had been asked to record a victory message so the video could be shared with voters as quickly as possible after the results are announced.

She told Sky News: “I think it’s trying to deal with these strange times and have an announcement on the leadership contest so that our members and the public can view from their homes really.

“It’s logistically quite challenging and I think we’ve all been asked to do this victory speech so that it can be sent out over the airwaves as quickly as possible after we win.”

The latest poll produced by YouGov showed Keir Starmer, who ran on a unity platform in the three-month-long contest, in the lead over Ms Long-Bailey and Ms Nandy.

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Hustings had to be cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak and the conference scheduled to announce the winner of the contest also had to be pulled.

Jeremy Corbyn triggered the contest in December after announcing he would step down following Labour’s disastrous performance in the General Election.

Labour lost more than 50 seats, including some traditional constituencies in northern heartlands that turned for the first time to the Conservative Party.

Voters cited continued uncertainty over the party’s stance on Brexit, as well as Mr Corbyn’s leadership, as key reasons pushing them to turn away from the party.

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Indian Prime Minister Modi begs for forgiveness over ‘difficult’ coronavirus decision

Narendra Modi addressed the afflicted nation in his weekly radio address. He asked for his country’s forgiveness after lockdowns were introduced with less than four hours notice.  The Prime Minister has apologised for the sudden and strict stay-at-home measures.

He has said there was “no other way” to stop the spread of coronavirus.

He continued: ”Especially when I look at my poor brothers and sisters, I definitely feel that they must be thinking, what kind of prime minister is this who has placed us in this difficulty?

“I especially seek their forgiveness, possibly many would be angry at me for being locked in their homes.

“I understand your troubles but there was no other way to wage war against coronavirus… It is a battle of life and death and we have to win it.”

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All Indian citizens are banned from leaving their homes for three weeks.

The “total lockdown” measures were introduced by Modi on Tuesday.

All non-essential businesses have been closed, and all mass gatherings have been banned.

The measures are in line with other countries, who have been forced to impose similar closures on businesses.

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The sudden closure has sparked mass exodus from India’s major cities.

Thousands of migrant workers have been seen leaving cities like Delhi to return to their home villages.

This comes after transport has been closed, leaving many poor workers without cars to walk.

One worker died on Saturday after attempting to walk 168 miles to return home.

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India announced a bailout valued at around £19 billion for the country’s poor on Tuesday, including free food and cash handouts for those left furloughed by the virus.

There are concerns the measures won’t reach those who need it most.

Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo – two of the three winners of the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2019 – wrote in the Indian Express saying aid for the poor was needed.

They wrote: “Without that, the demand crisis will snowball into an economic avalanche, and people will have no choice but to defy orders.”

India has reported 1,024 cases of coronavirus early Monday morning.

So far 27 Indian people have passed away as a result of the virus.

India has one of the lowest testing rates in the world, leading to fears there actual number could be higher.

Officials are concerned that an outbreak in the densely populated country could result in a catastrophe.

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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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UK weather forecast: Britons to bask in glorious heat today before bitter snow RETURNS

Toward the end of the week, temperatures will begin to drop, as sleet, hail and even snow will arrive from the Arctic, according to forecaster Net Weather. While the weekend will consist of cold air that will move across the country outwards.

Temperatures will plummet to single digits, as snow begins to fall, it the southern part of the UK, it will drop to -4C.

The Weather Outlook forecaster Brian Gaze said: “Cold Arctic air is expected to sweep southwards by the weekend, with a risk of snow in the North even at low levels, and further south over high ground, and widespread frosts.”

The Met Office has predicted that today will consist of dry spells and warm weather over England and Wales.

Toward the coastline, there will be some soggier conditions with rain and clouds predicted.

But on Saturday showers will arrive in the north, before hitting the eastern part of the UK.

The sudden change in weather will be a dampener to those who have enjoyed sitting in their garden during their coronavirus lockdown, and exercising for their one hour a day.

However, today Britons still have the chance to make the most of warm weather as the UK is set to be hotter than Melbourne today

The sizzling temperatures will make it 8C above average spring climates.

Before the weekend will see the more normal spring temperatures of 9C and -2C nights.

Met Office forecaster Marco Petagna said: “It’s mild south-westerly winds the many – but a cold northerly wind to end the week.”

Another forecaster added: “Maximum temperatures are peaking well above average.

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“But after warm days, it will turn [and] colder air will return with much colder air from the north.

“Saturday has sun and wintry showers, with settled conditions through the end of March bringing plenty of sunny spells across the UK.”

Looking ahead to next week, the Met Office said: “Towards the end of March it will be largely dry.

“However, eastern areas will likely see showers of hail and snow at times, which will accumulate on higher ground and could give some snow and ice to lower levels during the night.

“A northeasterly wind will keep it cold.

“High-pressure conditions should dominate through the beginning of April, bringing plenty of dry, fine weather with bright or sunny spells across the UK, particularly in the west.

“Winds will be predominantly light, with any breezier weather bringing a significant wind chill.

“Indeed it looks likely to remain colder than average with a further chance of snow.

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