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Canada shatters record for new coronavirus cases as new travel rules are announced – Global News

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Another 7,471 cases of the novel coronavirus have been detected in Canada, marking the highest single-day increase since the pandemic began.

The new cases bring the country’s total number of infections to 572,525.

More than 8,000 new cases were reported on December 26, however, several provinces reported cases detected over 48 hours, because of the Christmas holiday.

Provincial health authorities also confirmed 94 more people have died, pushing Canada’s death toll to 15,472.

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484,583″ readability=”37.880794701987″>However, since the pandemic started, 484,583 people have recovered from COVID-19 infections, and 18,332,176 tests for the virus have been administered.

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Canada to require all arriving air passengers to show negative COVID-19 test

The new cases and deaths come as the federal government announced Canada will now require all air passengers to obtain a negative COVID-19 test three days before arriving in the country.

The new rules are expected to come into effect in the next few days.

“We strongly advise against travel unless absolutely necessary,” Public Safety Minister Bill Blair told reporters at a news conference in Ottawa on Wednesday.

“If you must travel, understand that upon your return, you must follow guidelines and quarantine for 14 days,” he said. “It’s not just the right thing to do — it’s the law. And if you don’t, it can result in serious consequences.”

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Coronavirus: Airline passengers now required to show negative test results


Coronavirus: Airline passengers now required to show negative test results

In a series of tweets Wednesday afternoon, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam, said while Canadians can be “hopeful heading into 2021 as vaccines are being administered, we must remember that until they are more widely available, following proven #PublicHealth measures is key to #SlowtheSpread.”

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Tam said the country remains on a “trajectory for resurgence” adding that COVID-19 infections rates “remain very high in many areas.”

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She said this means we must celebrate New Year’s Eve “differently and resolve to carry on with effective public health practices” in the new year.

Thousands of new cases in the provinces

In Ontario, a record 2,923 new cases of the virus were detected, and provincial health authorities said another 19 people have died.

To date, Ontario has seen 178,831 infections and 4,474 fatalities related to COVID-19. 

Meanwhile, in Quebec, 2,511 new cases were detected, marking the highest single-day increase since the pandemic began.

The new cases bring the province’s total case load to 199,822. Forty-one more fatalities mean a total of 8,165 people have died in Quebec after testing positive for the virus.

Read more:
Could Moderna be authorized as a one-shot vaccine? Here’s what we know

Saskatchewan reported 138 new cases of the coronavirus, and three more deaths.

So far, the province has seen 15,160 infections and fatalities.

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Health officials in Manitoba said 130 new cases have been detected, and two more people have died, bringing the total number of infections and fatalities to 24513 and 661 respectively. 

Four new cases were detected in Atlantic Canada on Wednesday.

Nova Scotia added three new cases, while New Brunswick saw one new infection, bringing the total number of cases in the provinces to 1,483 and 946 respectively.


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Coronavirus: Airline passengers now required to show negative test results


Coronavirus: Airline passengers now required to show negative test results

Newfoundland and Labrador did not report any new infections, meaning its case load remained at 390.

Prince Edward Island did not release any new COVID-19 data on Wednesday, however the latest numbers issued on Dec. 29 said the province has seen 96 cases of COVID-19, 90 of which are considered to be resolved.

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None of the Maritime provinces, or Newfoundland and Labrador reported any new fatalities associated with the virus on Wednesday.

Alberta added 1,287 new infections and health authorities confirmed 18 more deaths have occurred.

Since the pandemic began, the province has seen 100,428 cases and 1,046 people have died after falling ill. 

In British Columbia, 485 new cases were detected, five of which are considered epidemiologically-linked meaning they have not yet been confirmed by a laboratory.

Eleven new deaths mean 893 people have died in B.C. since the pandemic began.

The new cases bring the total confirmed number of infections to 50,843, along with an additional 457 epidemiologically-linked cases.

No new cases in the territories

The Yukon did not report any new cases or fatalities. To date, the territory has seen 60 cases — 59 of which are considered to be resolved — and one death related to COVID-19.

Read more:
Canada still awaiting data from AstraZeneca as U.K. approves new coronavirus vaccine

Nunavut did not report any new cases or deaths on Wednesday, either, meaning the territory’s case count and death toll remained at 266 and one, respectively.

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The Northwest Territories has not reported a new case of the novel coronavirus since Dec. 18.

To date, 24 people in the territory have contracted the virus, but all have since recovered.

Global deaths top 1.8 million

Since the virus was first detected in Wuhan, China late last year, it has infected 82,510,560 people around the world, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University.

By 7 p.m. ET, the virus had claimed 1,800,400 lives globally.


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Coronavirus: Canada hasn’t identified any cases of new coronavirus variant seen in U.K., Dr. Tam says


Coronavirus: Canada hasn’t identified any cases of new coronavirus variant seen in U.K., Dr. Tam says – Dec 22, 2020

The United States remained the viral epicentre with over 19.6 million confirmed cases and more than 341,300 deaths.

India has reported the second-highest number of infections, with over 10.2 million cases, and over 148,400 fatalities.

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Trudeau nominates first judge of colour to sit on Supreme Court

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday made history by nominating the first judge of color to sit on the country’s Supreme Court, which has only ever had white justices in its 146-year existence.

Mahmud Jamal, who has been a judge on Ontario‘s court of appeal since 2019, trained as a lawyer and appeared before the Supreme Court in 35 appeals addressing a range of civil, constitutional, criminal and regulatory issues.

“He’ll be a valuable asset to the Supreme Court – and that’s why, today, I’m announcing his historic nomination to our country’s highest court,” Trudeau said on Twitter.

Trudeau has frequently said there is a need to address systemic racism in Canada.

Jamal, born in Nairobi in 1967, emigrated with his family to Britain in 1969 where he said he was “taunted and harassed because of my name, religion, or the color of my skin.”

In 1981 the family moved to Canada, where his “experiences exposed me to some of the challenges and aspirations of immigrants, religious minorities, and racialized persons,” he said in a document submitted to support his candidacy.

Canada is a multicultural country, with more than 22% of the population comprised of minorities and another 5% aboriginal, according to the latest census.

“We know people are facing systemic discrimination, unconscious bias and anti-black racism every single day,” Trudeau said last year.

Jamal will replace Justice Rosalie Abella, who is due to retire from the nine-person court on July 1.

 

(Reporting by David Ljunggren in Ottawa; Editing by Matthew Lewis)

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Donors pledge $1.5 billion for Venezuelan migrants, humanitarian crisis

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More than 30 countries and two development banks on Thursday pledged more than $1.5 billion in grants and loans to aid Venezuelan migrants fleeing a humanitarian crisis, as well as their host countries and vulnerable people still in the country.

The $954 million in grants announced at a donors’ conference hosted by Canada – which included pledges of $407 million from the United States and C$115 million Canadian dollars ($93.12 million) from Canada – exceeded the $653 million announced at a similar event last year.

But that fell short of the needs of countries hosting the more than 5.6 million Venezuelans who have left their country since 2015, as the once-prosperous nation’s economy collapsed into a years-long hyperinflationary recession under socialist President Nicolas Maduro.

Most have resettled in developing countries in Latin America and the Caribbean who have themselves seen their budgets stretched thin due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Does this cover all needs? Of course not,” Filippo Grandi, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, told reporters. “We will have to continue to encourage donors to support the response.”

At the conference, Ecuadorean President Guillermo Lasso announced that the country – which hosts some 430,000 Venezuelans – would begin a new process to regularize migrants’ status. That came after Colombia in February gave 10-year protected status to the 1.8 million Venezuelans it hosts.

Karina Gould, Canada‘s minister for international development, said the amount pledged showed donors were eager to support such efforts.

“There is that recognition on behalf of the global community that there needs to be support to ensure that that generosity can continue, and can actually deepen, in host countries,” Gould said.

In addition, the World Bank and Inter-American Developmemt Bank pledged $600 million in loans to address the crisis, Gould said.

($1 = 1.2349 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Luc Cohen, Michelle Nichols and David Ljunggren; Editing by Cynthia Osterman and Aurora Ellis)

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Ecuador to start new ‘normalization process’ for Venezuelan migrants

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Ecuador will implement a new “normalization process” for the 430,000 Venezuelan migrants living in the South American country, President Guillermo Lasso said on Thursday, without providing further details of the plan.

Lasso’s announcement, at a conference hosted by Canada intended to raise money to support the more than 5.6 million Venezuelans who have fled an economic crisis in the South American country, came after Colombia in February gave 10-year protected status to the nearly 2 million Venezuelans it hosts.

“I am pleased to announce the beginning of a new regularization process, which in order to be an effective, lasting and permanent policy should be complemented by strategies for economic integration and labor market access,” Lasso said.

Ecuador in late 2019 launched a regularization process for Venezuelans who arrived before July of that year. That included two-year humanitarian visas meant to facilitate access to social services.

Lasso said Ecuador needed outside funding to continue caring for Venezuelan migrants, estimating that more than 100,000 additional migrants were expected to arrive before the end of the year.

“I call on our partners in the international community to be co-responsible and have solidarity with Venezuelan migrants and refugees, and with the countries that receive them,” he said.

 

(Reporting by Luc Cohen; editing by Barbara Lewis)

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