22 December 2020

• Antarctica, the world’s only coronavirus-free continent, reports 36 cases at a Chilean research base and three cases among the crew of a Chilean Navy ship crew. Source
• Taiwan, which held the record for the world’s longest coronavirus-free interval, reports its first locally transmitted coronavirus case in eight months. Source
• The Trump administration works on a deal with Pfizer for an additional 110 million doses in return for a government directive to improve the company’s access to manufacturing supplies. Source
• More countries (Argentina, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Fiji, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Peru, Poland, Russia, Singapore, South Korea and Spain) restrict or ban travelers from Britain (which has been dubbed “Plague Island”) – as some, including Israel, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia – ban all international travel. Source
• France loosens restrictions on travelers from the UK, allowing them to enter if they have a negative COVID-19 test result; it also relaxes the ban on trucks after a two-day standoff that raised food shortage fears in Britain. Sources 1,2
• France announces that it will fast-track naturalization for 700 foreign frontline workers including garbage collectors, housekeepers, cashiers and healthcare staff exposed to coronavirus through their work. Source
• In South Korea, an increase in coronavirus cases has filled hospitals, leaving only 42 beds nationwide as the government considers whether to implement its most restrictive measures. Source

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