Following is a summary of current world news briefs.
UK minister: no decision yet on COVID-19 vaccines for healthy children
British vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi on Sunday said a decision had not yet been taken on whether healthy children aged 12- to 15-years-old should be vaccinated against COVID-19, following reports that a rollout could begin in the coming days.
Britain’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) on Friday declined to recommend vaccinations for children in that group, taking a precautionary approach due to a rare risk of heart inflammation, but adding the issue was finely balanced.
Spanish village hosts first bull running fiesta since pandemic
Ten bulls charged through the streets of Villaseca de la Sagra on Sunday in pursuit of hundreds of runners as the first bull-running fiesta was held in Spain since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Villages and towns across Spain hold the fiestas but they were prohibited last year as the country brought in tough health restrictions. Opposition to them has increased in recent years as Spanish society remains divided over the controversial issue of using bulls for sport.
Pope hopes many countries take Afghan refugees and young are educated
Pope Francis said on Sunday that he was praying that many countries take Afghan refugees and, in an apparent reference to the Taliban’s past restrictions on schooling for women, said it is essential that young Afghans receive an education. “In these moments of upheaval, in which Afghans are seeking refuge, I pray for the most vulnerable among them,” he told hundreds of people in St. Peter’s Square for his weekly blessing.
U.N. urges Australia to speed up efforts to drop coal
Australia’s government should increase its efforts to phase out coal or else climate change will dramatically damage the country’s economy, Selwin Hart, the United Nations special adviser on climate change, said on Sunday. Australia’s reliance on coal-fired power makes it one of the world’s largest carbon emitters per capita, but its conservative government has steadfastly backed Australia’s new deputy PM casts shadow over 2050 net-zero emissions ambition fossil fuel industries, saying tougher action on emissions would cost jobs.
Taiwan scrambles jets against renewed Chinese military activity
Taiwan’s air force scrambled on Sunday against renewed Chinese military activity, with its defense ministry reporting that 19 aircraft including nuclear-capable bombers had flown into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone. Chinese-claimed Taiwan has complained for a year or more of repeated missions by China’s air force near the self-ruled island, often in the southwestern part of its air defense zone near the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands.
New Zealand tried to deport attacker for years after he arrived as refugee
New Zealand had tried for years to deport the knife-wielding militant who wounded seven people at a mall in Auckland last week, the government said after it released more details on the attacker following the lifting of a court suppression order. Court documents made public on Sunday identified the attacker as Ahamed Aathil Mohamed Samsudeen, 32, an ethnic Tamil Muslim from Sri Lanka. He had arrived in New Zealand 10 years ago on a student visa-seeking refugee status, which was granted in 2013.
Each COVID-19 surge poses a risk for healthcare workers: PTSD
Nurse Chris Prott’s knees jump, his heart races, his mouth goes dry and his mind floods with dark memories when he talks about working in the Milwaukee VA Medical Center’s intensive care unit (ICU) during pandemic surges. Prott shares a struggle common to many of the military veterans for whom he has cared for years: symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Taliban and opposition forces battled on Saturday to control the Panjshir Valley north of Kabul, the last Afghan province holding out against the militant group, as the top U.S. general warned of a “civil war” if the Islamists failed to consolidate power. Both sides claimed to have the upper hand in Panjshir but neither could produce conclusive evidence to prove it. The Taliban, which swept through the country ahead of the final withdrawal of U.S.-led forces this week, was unable to control the valley when they ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001.
Syrian army resumes shelling of rebel enclave after collapse of deal
Syrian army units backed by Iranian-backed militias resumed the shelling of a rebel enclave in southern Syria on Sunday after the collapse of a Russia-brokered deal to allow the government to reinstate full control over the area. Russian generals brokered the deal late on Tuesday to avert bloody urban warfare after the heaviest bombardment by elite army units of the rebel core of the city of Deraa in a two-month siege that has forced many of the 50,000 inhabitants to flee.
Boosted by surge in polls, Germany’s Scholz bets on coalition with the Greens
Germany’s center-left chancellor candidate Olaf Scholz wants to lead Europe’s largest economy in a coalition government with the left-leaning Greens, though polls suggest he will need the support of a third party to reach a stable majority in parliament. Scholz and his Social Democrats (SPD) have opened up a five-point lead over Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives ahead of a Sept. 26 national election that promises multiple coalition options and unusually complicated negotiations.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)