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Covid-19 tracker: Australia ranked the worst nation for vaccine rollout

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Frustration is growing across Australia as more than half of the population suffers through further lockdowns to curb the growing Covid-19 outbreaks

Police officers patrol the Valley Mall in Brisbane on March 29, 2021 as more than two million people in the city entered a three-day lockdown after a cluster of coronavirus cases was detected in Australia’s third-biggest city. (Photo by Patrick HAMILTON / AFP)

18 months into the lockdown, many are questioning why they are subjected to tough stay-at-home orders, as countries like England and the US open up.

Less than 14 percent of the entire population is vaccinated – which is the worst rating out of the OECD nations

It comes as Prime Minister, Scott Morrison acknowledges the nation’s struggles but refuses to apologise.

AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER SCOTT MORRISON

He says “no country has got their pandemic response 100%” and spoke of the nation’s low overall infection rates compared to many other countries.

915 people have died as a result of Covid-19 in Australia since the pandemic began.

Border closures, hotel quarantine programmes and lockdowns have all helped keep case numbers low in the past, but the increased prevalence of the Delta strain has authorities concerned.

‘This is a dangerous time’ – three Australian states in lockdown

Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia all remain subject to strict stay-at-home orders today as residents wait to see if all of their hard work is paying off.

“This is a dangerous time,” Mr Marshall said.

“I’m 100 per cent convinced that South Australians will rise to the challenge, will make sure they can abide by these new restrictions, and make sure we get through this in as short a time as possible.”

Victoria is currently in an extended lockdown, reporting its highest number of locally acquired covid cases to date this year on Thursday morning.

“As promising as our progress has been avoiding a New South Wales-style long, lengthy, very challenging lockdown, where you just lose control of cases, we’ve avoided that, but we need more time,” Premier Daniel Andrews said on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, NSW is in the midst of a 5-week lockdown.

Where did it all begin?

NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant confirmed on Thursday that the Sydney driver who tested positive for COVID-19 had the Delta variant.

According to the ABC, while the recent COVID-19 outbreak in Victoria also involved the Delta variant, that outbreak was linked to a different source of infection.

The Delta variant was first detected in India in October last year.

UK authorities have estimated the Delta variant is 40 per cent more infectious than the Alpha variant that sent Britain into lockdown at the start of the year.

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World

North Korea condemns AUKUS security alliance

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North Korea has condemned a new security pact between the US, UK and Australia, saying it could trigger a “nuclear arms race”

A North Korea Foreign Ministry official stated that the Aukus deal would “upset the strategic balance in the Asia-Pacific region”.

The deal will see the US and UK give Australia the technology to build nuclear-powered submarines.

The AUKUS agreement is being widely viewed as an effort to counter China’s influence in the contested South China Sea.

The security pact was announced last week by the leaders of the US, UK and Australia and will cover cruise missiles, A.I technologies and others including the nuclear subs.

“These are extremely undesirable and dangerous acts which will upset the strategic balance in the Asia-Pacific region and trigger off a chain of nuclear arms race,”

said a DPRK Foreign Ministry official referring to the security agreement.

Last week, North Korea carried out two major weapons tests concerning surrounding nations such as Japan.

Those tests included that of a long-range cruise missile and a ballistic missile.

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World

Hong Kong leaders select powerful ‘patriots only’ committee

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Hong Kong’s political elite have begun the process to select the powerful committee that will ultimately choose the city-state’s next leader

5,000 Hong Kong residents are part of the group who began voting on Sunday for the election committee candidates.

The city’s ruling class is voting for a 1,500 seat Election Committee and in December, this committee will appoint 40 of the city’s 90 legislators

In 2021, the group will then pick Hong Kong’s next Beijing-approved leader. 

This election is the first since Beijing implemented major changes to the city’s electoral system , ensuring only Chinese patriots would be eligible to gain a position of power.

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam says “the whole objective of improving the electoral system is to ensure patriots administer Hong Kong”.

Lam continued saying: “I doubt very much that another government or country will allow the public election of people whose mission is to undermine the national interest.”

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Ticker Views

Does an apology make it acceptable to kill innocent children? | ticker VIEWS

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The United States Military apologises for mistakeningly killing innocent Afghan civilians, including children, in its recent drone strike

U.S. Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of United States Central Command, is calling the drone strike a “tragic mistake” and says innocent civilians were the victims.

The U.S. military thought it had targeted an Islamic State group’s “facilitator” and diminished an imminent terror threat as it withdrew from Afghanistan.

The US military got it devastatingly wrong, killing ten innocent members of a family, including seven children.

“I offer my profound condolences, It was a mistake and I offer my sincere apology.”

FRAnk mckenzie- head of u.s central command
Frank McKenzie, Head of U.S Central Command apologises

Is an apology enough?

The head of the U.S Central Command has issued an apology. Although, questions immediately emerge on how an apology can ever be sufficient for taking the lives of innocent people.

The world of terror changed after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The members of the extremist group responsible were immediately labelled terrorists. The leaders of the group were hunted down, as they should be.

However, it seems ironic when America “accidentally” takes the lives of innocent civilians, that an apology is supposed to make the chilling miscalculation acceptable.

“America has suffered a black mark on its reputation. This will have affects for a long time to come.”

Bruce wolpe- u.s studies centre
Holly STEARNES ASKS BRUCE WOLPE FROM THE U.S STUDIES CENTRE IF THE U.S WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE

Accountablity for killing innocent civilians

The drone strike killed a longtime aid worker for a U.S group, including two other adults and seven children.

The U.S intelligence was wrong by assuming the aid worker was an imminent terror threat. They decimated the car in front of loved ones and onlookers.

Reports suggest the military is exploring compensation payments for the families of the victims. However, compensation will never bring back their loved ones.

The latest grim miscalculation calls into question the reliability of U.S. intelligence and the safeguards in the controls over the use of lethal drones by the U.S. worldwide.

It casts doubt on the Biden administration’s ability to target threats without a U.S. footprint. There have been no talks if any individuals will be held to account.

This horrible mistake killed innocent people who supported America. Protocols must change to prevent this from ever happening again.

A lasting thought, does this make America terrorists too? According to definition, no.

“Terrorism is defined as trying to change the way of life in a country, and unfortunately the drone attack doesn’t fit that definition.”

oz sultan- counterterrorism analyst

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