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Live Reporting

Paul Gribben

All times stated are UK

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  1. A round-up of today's news

    A passenger waiting to travel across the border between NSW and Victoria before it closed

    Thanks for joining our live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic today. We're pausing our updates now until tomorrow morning - but before we go, here's a recap of today's headlines.

    • Far-right Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has tested positive for the coronavirus, after months of downplaying the severity of the pandemic. Previously, he had dismissed the virus as a "little flu". While confirming his test result, he removed his mask in front of a group of reporters
    • In Australia, Melbourne residents have gone back into lockdown as the border between New South Wales and Victoria has closed for the first time in a century
    • In the UK, new data shows less than a quarter of people who tested positive for coronavirus reported having symptoms on the day of their test
    • Also in the UK, the head of the UK's national academy of science - the Royal Society - has said face coverings should be worn in all crowded spaces. Currently, they're only compulsory on public transport in England and Scotland
    • And the UK government has rejected calls for Prime Minister Boris Johnson to apologise after he said "too many care homes didn't really follow procedures" over coronavirus
    • As cases surge in the US's southern states, ICUs in 57 Florida hospitals have hit full capacity. Many US states have put plans to reopen on hold
    • Israel's director of public health, Siegal Sadetzki, resigned after a sharp rise in cases in the country. He criticised the government and said it had lifted lockdown restrictions too quickly
    • A new study from Spain has cast doubt on the theory that "herd immunity" can protect populations from the virus
    • A BBC investigation found that two life-saving drugs used to treat Covid-19 patients in India are in short supply, and are being sold at excessive prices on the black market
    • Meanwhile, the UN warns that diseases will keep leaping from animals to humans if we don't take action to protect the environment
    • There have now been more than 11.6 million confirmed cases of the virus and almost 540,000 deaths worldwide.
  2. Thanks for joining us

    We're wrapping up our live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic for today shortly - thank you for reading and we will be back tomorrow.

    You can follow all the latest news on the BBC News website, or for coronavirus news head here.

    Today's live coverage was brought to you by: Claudia Allen, Paul Gribben, Lauren Turner, Andreas Illmer, Owen Amos, Krutika Pathi, Max Matza, Gareth Evans, Ashitha Nagesh, Katie Wright and Francesca Gillett.

  3. Wear masks in crowded public spaces, says leading scientist

    The UK lags behind in setting clear policies on face coverings and on using them, the Royal Society says

    The head of the UK's national academy of science has called for everyone to carry a face covering when they leave home in order to tackle coronavirus.

    Currently, face coverings are compulsory on public transport in England and Scotland, but advised to be worn elsewhere. From 10 July, masks will be required in shops. In Wales and Northern Ireland coverings are not compulsory.

    Prof Sir Venki Ramakrishnan, president of the Royal Society, said the coverings should then be worn "whenever you are in crowded public spaces".

    He said evidence shows they protect the wearer and those nearby, and the UK was "way behind" other countries in usage.

    No 10 said the use of face masks is always kept "under review".

    Read the full story here.

  4. Camilla and Dame Judi on TikTok and lockdown skills

    Video content

    Video caption: The Duchess of Cornwall and Dame Judi Dench share their experiences of lockdown.

    If you didn't think you'd ever see the Duchess of Cornwall and TikTok in the same sentence, well neither did we.

    Camilla - who is married to Prince Charles - has been speaking to Dame Judi Dench about their shared experience of having to use the internet in lockdown to keep in touch with family.

    Camilla guest edited The Emma Barnett show for BBC Radio 5 Live today.

    Dame Judi told Camilla about her new found fame on TikTok (largely thanks to her grandson) saying: "I love TikTok stardom better than anything."

  5. Coronavirus transmission rates key to Wales' schools plans

    Welsh Education Minister Kirsty Williams

    Parents of school-age children in Wales are still waiting to find out exactly what will happen in the new term in September.

    Now Education Minister Kirsty Williams has said any decision on how schools will return will be based on coronavirus transmission rates.

    Regular reviews are to be carried out during the summer, she says. She hopes to outline her plan for pupils this week.

    Pressure has been growing on the Welsh government to reveal how many schools might return. Read the full story here.

  6. Burundi begins mass coronavirus testing

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    Burundi coronavirus mass testing
    Image caption: The country's new president has insisted on a tougher stance

    Burundi has launched a mass testing campaign for coronavirus, in a fresh campaign by the new government to fight the spread of the pandemic.

    Former president Pierre Nkurunziza was accused of downplaying the issue, saying "God had cleared [coronavirus] from Burundi's skies", almost a fortnight before he died last month of cardiac arrest.

    But last week, his successor Evariste Ndayishimiye, declared coronavirus a "major enemy of Burundians" and vowed "to start the fight against that enemy".

    At the launch of the campaign in Bujumbura, many people were, unusually, seen wearing masks.

    A record 640 tests were taken on the day, the highest number since March when the virus was first reported in the country.

    Burundi has so far reported 191 cases from 3,200 tests done in the past three months.

  7. Cut your hair? Probably. Do your nails? No...

    Barber's shop

    Your fringe is sweeping your chin, you can comb your leg hair and you've got a monobrow.

    Before anyone puts finger to keyboard to complain, all of these things are FINE if that's your look.

    However, if you are feeling the need for a bit of bodily grooming, here's a handy guide to what we know so far about reopening hairdressers, barbers and beauty salons in Wales (and what no-one knows yet).

  8. Watch: Show must go on for Brighton Pride

    Video content

    Video caption: Brighton Pride: 'We've been forced into a digital world'
  9. Florida ICUs hitting full capacity

    Emergency department at hospital in Hialeah, Florida

    Some of Florida's hospitals are coming under immense pressure with coronavirus patients, with intensive care units at 57 hospitals at full capacity.

    According to a report from the state's Agency for Health Care Administration, the hospitals are spread out across 25 of the state's 67 counties. More than 300 hospitals were included in the report, but not all of those have ICUs.

    Cases of the virus have surged in US southern states, including in Florida. In the last week, Florida has recorded more than 10,000 new cases in a 24-hour period three times in the last week.

    The state's total death toll is now more than 3,800.

  10. What do young people want to hear from Rishi Sunak?

    The faces of four young people

    We will be hearing from Chancellor Rishi Sunak on Wednesday, as he delivers his summer statement.

    Among those particularly interested in what he has to say are some of the young people whose lives have been upended by the coronavirus pandemic.

    There could be more than one million young workers who are without a job, if the overall UK level of unemployment goes up from the current 4% of workers to 10%, according to the Resolution Foundation think-tank.

    On top of that, under-30s have been hardest hit by a fall in their income during lockdown as more of their money goes on essentials.

    So is there anything the chancellor could announce in his speech on Wednesday to help them? BBC Business spoke to some of them to find out.

  11. Texas gives update on deaths in prisons

    At least 84 prisoners and nine prison guards and employees have died from the coronavirus so far, according to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

    The latest victim was Correctional Officer V Kenneth Harbin, 60, who died on 4 July.

    According to figures released last week by Texas officials, 8,811 offenders and 1,556 employees have tested positive.

    Prisons and jails around the US have been outbreak epicentres since the early days of the pandemic. Inmates have no ability to practice social distancing and sometimes little access to basic hygiene products such as soap and warm water.

    In California, San Quentin prison has been hit by a deadly outbreak after infected prisoners were transferred there from another facility.

    As of Monday, six San Quentin inmates have died and another 1,387 inmates have tested positive. Officials say they are urgently trying to reduce the prison's population to below 3,000.

    San Quentin prison is the worst affected detention centre in California
    Image caption: San Quentin prison is the worst affected detention centre in California
  12. Bolsonaro takes mask off after confirming he has Covid-19

    We reported earlier that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has tested positive for coronavirus.

    Now, footage shows him removing his mask in front of a group of reporters.

    Shortly after confirming his test result, he stepped back a few feet and took off the mask. He then told journalists that he looked "fine".

    Mr Bolsonaro has consistently downplayed the threat of the virus, and has called it a "little flu".

    Video content

    Video caption: Jair Bolsonaro removes mask after testing positive for Covid-19
  13. WHO: Bolsonaro infection 'shows we are all vulnerable'

    A nurse fills in a form on behalf of an elderly patient inside an ambulance in Sao Paulo, Brazil (2 July 2020)
    Image caption: The number of Covid-19 deaths and infections in Brazil is second only to the US

    Dr Mike Ryan, emergencies director for the World Health Organization (WHO), has sent his 'get well soon' wishes to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and said that his infection should serve as an example for others.

    "We wish him a speedy and full recovery from this disease," he said on Tuesday. "I think the message to us all is: we are vulnerable to this virus.”

    WHO regional director Carissa Etienne echoed his comment while speaking from Washington DC to the directors of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

    "This is a pandemic of staggering proportions and we have no option but to continue to put all our energy into controlling it," she warned.

    PAHO director for communicable diseases Marcos Espinal added: "The message is that this virus in unpredictable and does not respect race, class or people in power, despite security around any president."

  14. The Irish Covid Tracker app is out - where's England's?

    Rory Cellan-Jones

    Technology correspondent


    This morning I installed Ireland's just-released contact-tracing app on my phone, where it joined Germany's Corona Warn-App, which was released three weeks ago.

    Gibraltar recently released its Beat Covid Gibraltar app, based on the Irish code.

    The Republic's Covid Tracker software is also the foundation of an app Northern Ireland is promising to release within weeks. And now there's a hint Wales could go the same way.

    "We remain in discussion about a range of options to achieve a working app, including development in Northern Ireland," a Welsh Government spokesman told the BBC.

    So when is England finally going to get its app?

    Find out more here.

  15. US ambassador to Brazil to be tested after party with Bolsonaro

    The US ambassador to Brazil, who hosted President Jair Bolsonaro at an American Independence Day Party over the weekend, will undergo testing amid news that the Brazilian leader has been infected with Covid-19.

    On Saturday, Mr Bolsonaro was photographed by the Brazilian foreign minister embracing US Ambassador Todd Chapman at the 4 July celebration.

    After Mr Bolsonaro displayed Covid-19 symptoms on Monday, the US embassy tweeted (in Portuguese) that Mr Chapman "has no symptoms, but he is taking precautions".

    The US statement added that he will be tested and and will "follow the screening protocols".

    View more on twitter
  16. US pays largest sum so far for vaccine research

    Vaccine tests

    The US federal government will pay $1.6bn (£1.3bn) to drug maker Novavax to produce 100m coronavirus doses.

    The payment is the largest made so far by the US "Operation Warp Speed" - a partnership between the federal government and the private sector to find a coronavirus vaccine - and the fourth made to a drug manufacturer.

    Novavax, which is based in Maryland, has never before brought a product to market, according to the New York Times.

    “Adding Novavax’s candidate to Operation Warp Speed’s diverse portfolio of vaccines increases the odds that we will have a safe, effective vaccine as soon as the end of this year,” US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said in a statement on Tuesday.

    Novavax CEO Stanley Erck told CNN on Monday that the deal with the US government "speaks to the confidence that they have in our platform to be able to develop a vaccine". He added that the company aims to ship out 100m vaccination doses by February 2021.

  17. Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro tests positive

    Jair Bolsonaro

    Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who took his fourth coronavirus test on Monday after developing Covid-19 symptoms, has tested positive for the virus.

    Mr Bolsonaro has repeatedly played down the risks posed by the virus, calling it "a little flu" and saying that he would not be seriously affected by it.

    He has also urged regional governors to ease lockdowns, which he says hurt the economy, and on Monday he watered down regulations on wearing face masks.

    As of Monday, the number of deaths in Brazil was over 65,000 and infections were over 1.6m, second only to the United States.

    Read more here.

  18. UK coronavirus deaths up by 155

    The latest figures from the Department of Health and Social care have been released, showing that a further 155 people in the UK have died after testing positive for coronavirus.

    It makes the total number of deaths after a positive test in hospitals, care homes and the wider community 44,391.

    But it does not include all deaths involving Covid-19 across the UK. That figure is now thought to have passed 55,000.

    The DHSC also said that in the 24-hour period up to 9am on Tuesday, there were 581 positive test results. A total of 286,349 cases have been confirmed in all.

  19. PM rejects calls to apologise for care home remark

    Picture of an elderly patient being looked after

    No 10 has rejected calls for Boris Johnson to apologise after he said "too many care homes didn't really follow procedures" over coronavirus.

    Labour called the PM's comments "crass" and said government advice to care homes had been "conflicting". And one union accused the PM of blaming care workers for government "failings".

    But Downing Street said Mr Johnson had been pointing out that not enough was known about the virus in the early stages of the outbreak. The PM's official spokesman added that the care homes had "done a brilliant job under very difficult circumstances" and the government had "put in place rigorous testing and additional funding".

    Care homes were hit particularly badly by the coronavirus with nearly 20,000 people confirmed to have died of coronavirus in care homes in England and Wales since the outbreak.

  20. Israel health chief quits after cases spike

    A man gets a haircut wearing mask and gloves in Tel Aviv
    Image caption: Israel has seen a surge in infections since it opened schools and businesses in May

    Israel's director of public health has resigned after the country experienced a sharp rise in cases.

    Siegal Sadetzki, an epidemiologist, criticised the government's response and said it had lifted lockdown restrictions too quickly.

    “The achievements in dealing with the first wave [of infections] were cancelled out by the broad and swift opening of the economy," she wrote in a statement.

    Israel imposed a national lockdown in April, and by the following month it had reduced the number of new cases to about 20 a day.

    But it reopened schools and businesses shortly after and the rate of infection rose sharply. The daily number of new cases hit 1,000 last week.

    On Monday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the country needed to take “limited actions” to avoid another full lockdown.