20 December 2020

• Israel begins vaccinating its residents. Source
• Thailand locks down Samut Sakhorn, a seaside province near Bangkok, after finding 689 new coronavirus cases. Source
• Many countries begin to ban travelers from the UK, hoping to prevent the spread of a new coronavirus variant which appears to be significantly more transmissible, including Germany and Switzerland (both of which banned travelers from South Africa after a potentially more transmissible coronavirus variant emerged there); Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Israel (which also banned travelers from Denmark and South Africa), Iran, Ireland, the Netherlands and Turkey also issued bans. Source
• Pakistan is enduring a second wave of coronavirus, with the national positivity rate increasing from 2 percent in October to 7.7 percent (and reaching 18 percent in Karachi); it is being driven by an ineffective government response, lack of compliance with masking and other measures, and mounting conspiracy theories questioning the severity of COVID-19. Source

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