• This daily round-up brings you a selection of the latest news and updates on the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, as well as tips and tools to help you stay informed and protected.
  • Top stories: Restrictions eased in England from today; Nigeria puts six states on red alert; Thailand to expand COVID-19 restrictions.

1. How COVID-19 is affecting the globe

Confirmed cases of COVID-19 have passed 190.4 million globally, according to Johns Hopkins University. The number of confirmed deaths stands at more than 4.08 million. More than 3.66 billion vaccination doses have been administered globally, according to Our World in Data.

A COVID-19 lockdown will be extended beyond Tuesday in the Australian state of Victoria, with new cases still being detected in the community.

Muslim pilgrims, who are vaccinated against COVID-19, have gathered for the annual haj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia.

Singapore has advised unvaccinated adults to stay at home as much as possible over the next few weeks, citing concerns over rising COVID-19 cases.

France has reported more than 10,000 new COVID-19 cases for the third day in a row.

Residents of Viet Nam's capital Hanoi have been urged to stay at home and authorities have ordered a halt to all non-essential services due to clusters of new COVID-19 infections.

Tokyo Olympic organizers have reported the first COVID-19 cases among competitors in the athletes' village.

Thailand has announced plans for heightened COVID-19 restrictions, including a tighter lockdown in Bangkok and high-risk provinces, an expansion of curfew areas and the suspensions of most domestic flights.

Daily new confirmed COVID-19 cases per million people in selected countries
Daily new confirmed COVID-19 cases per million people in selected countries
Image: Our World in Data

2. Restrictions eased in England

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for caution as COVID-19 restrictions end in England today.

From midnight, laws in England requiring facemasks to be worn in shops and other indoor settings lapsed, as did capacity limits in bars and restaurants, and rules limiting the number of people who can socialise together.

The strategy comes with risks though - notably, a vaccine-resistant variable emerging - and so Johnson urged caution.

"If we don’t do it now we’ve got to ask ourselves, when will we ever do it?" he said in a video message filmed on Sunday.

"This is the right moment but we’ve got to do it cautiously. We’ve got to remember that this virus is sadly still out there."

What is the COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurship?

The COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurship is a coalition of 85 global leaders, hosted by the World Economic Forum. Its mission: Join hands in support of social entrepreneurs everywhere as vital first responders to the pandemic and as pioneers of a green, inclusive economic reality.

Its COVID Social Enterprise Action Agenda, outlines 25 concrete recommendations for key stakeholder groups, including funders and philanthropists, investors, government institutions, support organizations, and corporations. In January of 2021, its members launched its 2021 Roadmap through which its members will roll out an ambitious set of 21 action projects in 10 areas of work. Including corporate access and policy change in support of a social economy.

For more information see the Alliance website or its “impact story” here.

3. Nigeria puts six states on COVID-19 red alert

Nigeria has put six states on red alert after reporting a 'worrisome' rise in COVID-19 infections, a government official has said.

Authorities have urged people to curb gatherings and hold prayers outside mosques during this week's Muslim festival Eid-el-Kabir.

A red alert allows authorities in the states to restrict celebrations and gatherings to a minimum.

The country has recorded 169,329 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with more than 2,000 recorded deaths.