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Indonesia on “the edge of catastrophe”

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The Red Cross is appealing for urgent medical supplies and vaccines as Indonesia spirals into crisis

Indonesia is battling a huge surge in Covid-19 infections. Hospitals have reached breaking point, with infections skyrocketing throughout the archipelago.

On Friday, medical officials in the province of West Java said bed occupancy rates in hospitals had exceeded 90 per cent. Some hospitals have exceeded 100 per cent capacity, pushing the health system “close to collapse”.

The nation is recording more than 20,000 cases per day in what is a grim record number of infections. This brings the total rate of infections since the start of the pandemic to 2.1 million. The county’s death toll is sitting at close to 58,000 people.

However, the Red Cross has suggested that the actual number of people who are sick and infected is likely to be far higher.

The Red Cross is calling for urgent increases in medical care, testing and vaccinations 

“Every day we are seeing this Delta variant driving Indonesia closer to the edge of a COVID-19 catastrophe,” Jan Gelfand, head of the IFRC in Indonesia said in a statement.

“We need lightning-fast action globally so that countries like Indonesia have access to the vaccines needed to avert tens of thousands of deaths. We must focus on getting vaccinations into the arms of those most at-risk and all adults everywhere to contain this virus.”

Under 5 per cent of Indonesia’s adult population has been fully vaccinated

Indonesia needs another 360 million doses to vaccinate at least 70 per cent of the population. At least 27.4 million have received the first dose.

The IFRC says Indonesia faces global vaccine inequity as a hurdle to securing the 360 million doses it needs to vaccinate at least 70 percent of its population.

Keira is the front-page editor at Ticker NEWS. She's previously worked at Reuters in Jakarta, and ABC in Australia. She has a Bachelor of Journalism, specialising in international politics. Keira is particularly interested in writing about politics, technology and human rights.

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Afghan women urge UN to block Taliban seat

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A group of Afghan women have urged the United Nations to block the Taliban from gaining a seat at the body

The women are calling for better representation for their country during a visit to the organisation’s New York headquarters.

Former Politician Fawzia Koofi says “the UN needs to give that seat to somebody who respects the rights of everyone in Afghanistan.”

She was joined by other former politicians and journalists.

Since seizing power in mid-August, Taliban leaders have vowed to respect women’s rights in accordance with sharia, or Islamic law. But that promise, doesn’t seem to have been kept.

Under Taliban rule from 1996 to 2001, women could not work and girls were banned from school.

Women also had to cover their faces and be accompanied by a male relative when they left home.

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Biden: US would defend Taiwan against China

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The United States will defend Taiwan against China, President Joe Biden has revealed

Ten months into the Biden administration, it is abundantly clear that the United States will continue to strengthen ties with Taiwan and defend the island if it is ever attacked by China.

The US President stated on Friday that his country will defend Taiwan against China, as tensions continue to escalate.

More to come.

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Mass protests held in Sudan against possible military rule

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Supporters of Sudan’s transitional government have turned out in Khartoum as rival protesters continue a sit-in to demand a military government

Thousands were seen demonstrating on the streets in multiple cities of Sudan, some rallying in support of the government and others backing the military.

The transitional government has attracted controversy, currently being led by a Sovereign Council of military and civilian leaders.

The opposing sides addressed their supporters, urging them to refrain from violence.

The talks were followed by nearly 40 people being injured or with breathing difficulties after authorities tried to break up protests using “force, bullets, and tear gas”.

The protests were organised by the Forces for Freedom and Change coalition, who were behind the rallies that led to the overthrow of their president in 2019.

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