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Live Reporting

Hazel Shearing, Joshua Nevett, Jennifer Scott and Sarah Collerton

All times stated are UK

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  1. Breaking159 more positive cases in Scotland

    Nicola Sturgeon is speaking at the Scottish government's daily briefing at the same time as PMQs and we're keeping an eye on what's happening there (as is our Scottish team's live page).

    Sturgeon has just confirmed a further 159 people have tested positive for Covid-19 - 1.9% of those who were tested yesterday.

    The first minister highlights the positive rate is now consistently around 2%, compared with 1% a few weeks ago.

    This takes the total number of positive cases in Scotland to 21,878.

    Ms Sturgeon highlights that the average daily case number of the last seven days is 155.

    Three weeks ago, this number was 52 - so there has been roughly a trebling of daily cases in this time.

    A total of 274 patients are in hospital with a confirmed case (up by seven), with six being treated in intensive care (no change).

    No deaths of people who tested positive were registered over the past 24 hours, meaning the total remains at 2,499.

    This is lower than the 4,231 deaths confirmed by National Records of Scotland earlier because that figure includes all cases where Covid-19 is mentioned on a death certificate, even if the patient had not been tested.

  2. UK PM: We are working flat out to get infection rate down

    Starmer is continuing to push Boris Johnson on the issue of testing.

    Johnson says those who want a test have to travel an average of 10 miles to get one.

    But the Labour leader says a "functioning test regime" was needed as the infection rate is rising.

    "When is this problem with test, trace and isolate going to be fixed?" he asks.

    The prime minister replies: "We are working flat out to address all the issues confronting us today in trying to get the infection rate down.

    "We are getting on with taking the tough decisions."

    Earlier, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said increasing numbers of people in England were seeking tests when they didn't have any Covid-19 symptoms.

    Boris Johnson at PMQs
  3. Starmer challenges UK PM on testing

    Labour leader Keir Starmer begins by challenging Prime Minister Boris Johnson on the distances some people have been told they have to travel to get a coronavirus test.

    He says he has spoken to a mum of a four-year-old who had a high temperature and was told to get a test by NHS 111.

    They live in London but there were no tests in Romford or Haywards Heath were they were first told to go, he says.

    They were told the nearest places was Telford or Inverness in Scotland.

    "This is frankly ridiculous," Starmer says.

    Johnson says it is because of the success of NHS Test and Trace that capacity for testing has increased, accusing the Labour leader of attacking those who are trying to keep us safe.

    "Nobody is attacking here," Starmer replies. "The prime minister needs to know how anxious hundreds of families are they have been sent all over the country or been told they are no tests."

    The PM says he sympathises with those who can’t get a test, saying demand is high because of demand from asymptomatic patients.

    Sir Keir Starmer
  4. UK's PMQs begins

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson has begun making his opening remarks at Prime Minister's Questions.

    It comes as England's rules on social gatherings change from Monday.

    The prime minister is due to go through the detail of this at a Downing Street press conference from 16:00 BST.

    You can follow coronavirus-related coverage of PMQs with us or there's blow-by-blow coverage on the BBC politics team's live page here.

  5. Bosnia schoolteachers build outdoor classroom

    Mirza Begovic teaches a class at an elementary school in an open-air classroom, before the start of the school year amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Kacuni, Bosnia and Herzegovina, September 8, 2020

    Teachers at a school in Bosnia have begun classes in an open-air classroom they built together over the summer, Reuters news agency reports.

    It had long been an idea to have an open-air classroom outside the school in Kacuni, but Bosnia's coronavirus outbreak accelerated the project - with help from donators and volunteers.

    The new space is laid out in an amphitheatre formation, and will be used when weather allows. There are plans for it to host school plays as well.

    Students attend a class at an elementary school in an open-air classroom, before the start of the school year amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Kacuni, Bosnia and Herzegovina, September 8, 2020

    Mirza Begovic, a language teacher at the school, told Reuters that it "offers a breath of fresh air both for teachers and students."

    Like others in Bosnia, the school has split classes into smaller groups to help student maintain social distancing. Some children will attend classes while others will learn remotely from home on a rotational bases.

    Since the start of its outbreak, Bosnia has reported 21,961 cases of coronavirus and 669 virus-related deaths.

  6. New virus rule is 'super simple' - Hancock

    Video content

    Video caption: Matt Hancock explains new coronavirus restrictions

    Health Secretary Matt Hancock has described the new coronavirus restrictions in England as "super simple".

    Social gatherings of more than six people will be illegal from Monday, but there are some exemptions.

    Mr Hancock told BBC Breakfast these exemptions apply for schools, work and some "very special" events like weddings and funerals.

    "Other than that the rule is really simple," he said.

    We are expected to find out more about the new restrictions at a press conference being held by the prime minister at 4pm. You can follow coverage of that here.

  7. UK's PMQs coming up

    As we've mentioned, the UK prime minister is due to give more details on England's coronavirus rules later - but first he faces MPs at Prime Minister's Questions at 12:00 BST.

    There may be questions on England's restrictions but he could also be quizzed about the nation's travel quarantine country list - which changed again this week to include seven Greek islands.

    Meanwhile, concern has continued over the ending of the UK government's furlough scheme in October. Labour has previously called for the extension of the programme, as have leading business groups.

    However, the prime minister has refused to extend the scheme, saying it would only keep people "in suspended animation".

  8. What are the rules and guidance in other parts of the UK?

    We've already mentioned the new rules coming in for England this morning - that social gatherings of more than six people - indoors and outdoors - will be illegal from Monday. But what are the rules in other parts of the UK?

    If you are meeting outside, the number of people who can gather varies:

    There are also different rules for meetings indoors - at your home, or a venue like a pub:

  9. Cricket club outbreak linked to stag party

    Google Street view of Barlaston Cricket Club entrance

    A coronavirus outbreak at a cricket club has been linked to a stag party, after travellers failed to quarantine after visiting Prague.

    Barlaston Cricket Club was forced to cancel Sunday's match after two members tested positive for Covid-19.

    Staffordshire County Council heard instead of self-isolating after the trip, the individuals "decided to have a game of cricket".

    The club said no more cases have arisen as a result of matches or events.

    Read more here.

  10. The government's warning system is flashing red

    Laura Kuenssberg

    Political editor

    Shoppers in Caerphilly, which is subject to a local lockdown
    Image caption: Shoppers in Caerphilly, which is subject to a local lockdown

    Expect to see the prime minister back at the lectern later urging the population to take care.

    It won't mark the beginning of another national lockdown. Nor will it be the start of a new draconian regime.

    But do expect to hear the prime minister emphasising the need for the public to follow the existing rules - being careful about social contact with people, isolating if ill, and (what seemed in the early days almost quaint advice in the face of a distant threat), to wash your hands.

    And there will be a reduction in the numbers of people who are allowed to gather in groups indoors and outdoors in England from 30 down to six.

    The reason for what may seem like a change of tone from the PM? Simple, the government is worried.

    In the last four or five days there has been a significant rise in the number of coronavirus cases. It's not a gradual gentle drift upwards, but a sharp and obvious spike. The rate of positive tests is going up particularly among the 17-21s, but noticeable too among people in their 40s.

    Read more from Laura here

  11. Deaths of Venezuelan health workers on the rise

    woman walks by an advertising poster in Buenos Aires, Argentina, 31 August 2020.
    Image caption: Health workers are among those hardest hit by the virus in Venezuela

    There has been a steep rise in deaths of Venezuelan health workers from Covid-19, the NGO Doctors United for Venezuela has warned.

    The group said that nine deaths of health workers had been reported on Tuesday bringing the total to 143.

    According to official government figures, Venezuela has more than 55,000 confirmed cases and 444 Covid-related deaths, much lower than its neighbours Colombia and Brazil, which have almost 680,000 and 4.1m cases respectively.

    However, health workers have claimed that the real figures are much higher and that a lack of testing is to blame for the low official numbers.

    Doctors United for Venezuela called on government spokespeople "to adjust their figures to reality".

  12. Ryanair boss calls UK travel quarantine 'defective'

    Michael O'Leary

    The UK's travel quarantine policy is a "shambles of mismanagement", Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary has said.

    In an interview with the BBC, Mr O'Leary said the UK and Irish Governments "stand indicted".

    He said the UK quarantine was "lumpy and defective" and that the UK needed to use testing at airports to help the safe return of international travel.

    Boris Johnson says travel quarantines are "vital" in the fight against coronavirus as tests can be unreliable.

    The policy requires travellers to high-risk countries to isolate for two weeks on their return to the UK.

    Read more here.

  13. Parkrun return 'unaffected' by England virus rule change

    England's tightening of coronavirus restrictions will not affect the weekly mass participation event Parkrun, organisers have confirmed.

    Parkruns were suspended worldwide in March because of the global coronavirus pandemic.

    They are now set to resume in England by the end of October.

    A Parkrun spokesperson said: "As a sporting event operating under a government accepted Covid framework, we are unaffected."

    Read more about Parkrun’s return here

  14. Czech government announces new indoor face mask rules

    Rob Cameron

    BBC Prague Correspondent

    A Woman wearing a face mask is seen walking on Charles bridge in Prague

    The Czech Health Minister Adam Vojtech has announced that face masks will be mandatory everywhere indoors from Thursday, after a record 1,164 new cases were reported on Tuesday.

    Masks had been mandatory in shops and shopping centres from today - that will now be extended to all enclosed spaces from tomorrow. Details will be announced during the day. They have been mandatory on public transport since Sep 1.

    Only five countries in Europe - Spain, France, Romania, Croatia and Malta - currently have more new cases per 100,000 over 14 days than the Czech Republic. The figures for neighbouring Germany, Austria, Poland and Slovakia are considerably lower.

    Czech authorities say most cases are younger and asymptomatic patients, but the risk of community spread to older and more vulnerable people is a threat.

    The country has also been criticised by the WHO for mulling the scaling back of testing and tracing contacts of positive cases, although details of any such moves have not yet been announced.

  15. More than 2,500 expected at racecourse meeting

    Doncaster Racecourse

    As the government tightens restrictions on social gatherings in England form Monday, more than 2,500 spectators are expected at Doncaster racecourse later.

    The crowd at the first day of the four-day St Leger meeting will be the first at a British horse racing fixture in six months.

    Racing has been held behind closed doors since resuming on 1 June after a 10-week suspension because of the coronavirus pandemic.

    Up to 3,640 people will be permitted entry on Wednesday, and the racecourse says more than 2,500 tickets have been sold. A limit of 6,202 is planned on the other days, including Saturday, when the Leger, the world's oldest Classic race, is staged.

    Asked about the pilot on BBC Breakfast on Wednesday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "The prime minister is going to set out more details of the consequences of the new rule for six people gathering later today. And we'll set out what that means for some of these events that we were planning to do."

    But Doncaster's elected Labour mayor Ros Jones said the festival was a "major risk for the borough that I would rather not see happen".

    "I believe the risk is too great as we are seeing rising infection rates," Ms Jones said.

  16. 'No change to place of worship rules'

    Justin Welby, the Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury, says he's been told by the UK government there will be no change to guidance on places of worship.

    View more on twitter

    The current guidance says larger gatherings are allowed for acts of communal worship in churches, synagogues, mosques, temples and meeting rooms in England, albeit subject to social-distancing restrictions.

  17. UK PM to give details on England restrictions at 16:00 BST

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrives at 10 Downing Street, London. (8 Sept 2020)

    As we mentioned earlier, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is due to outline the details of the changes to coronavirus restrictions in England later.

    He will do this at a Downing Street press conference at 16:00 BST and will be joined by Prof Chris Whitty, England's chief medical officer, and Sir Patrick Vallance, the UK government's chief scientific adviser.

    Here’s a reminder of what we know so far about the restrictions.

  18. BreakingScottish deaths up by a third between April and June

    Deaths in Scotland between April and June 2020 were up by a third compared to the five-year average, according to official figures.

    The National Records of Scotland (NRS) said 18,201 deaths had been registered, 4,515 more than the five-year average for the quarter.

    Covid-19 was the underlying cause in 3,739 of them, accounting for 83% of the excess deaths.

    Deaths from diabetes, dementia and Alzheimer's were also significantly higher than the five-year average, the NRS said.

    Read the full story from our colleagues in Scotland here.

  19. Daily cases reach record high in Argentina

    woman walks by an advertising poster in Buenos Aires, Argentina, 31 August 2020.
    Image caption: Argentina imposed a strict lockdown early on but now that it's been eased cases have risen

    Argentina, one of the countries where the number of coronavirus infections continues to rise steeply, registered a new record number of daily cases on Tuesday: 12,027.

    In total, there have now been more than half a million confirmed cases in Argentina since the pandemic began.

    Most of the new cases are in Buenos Aires province.

    Argentina was one of the countries to impose a strict lockdown early on in the pandemic and cases at first rose slowly.

    But with restrictions being eased to kickstart Argentina's ailing economy, the infection rate has shot up and the country is now among the list of top ten countries with the highest number of Covid-19 cases.

  20. UN warns on Syria virus spread

    Martin Patience

    BBC News, Middle East correspondent

    The UN says more than 40 of its staff and their dependents have caught coronavirus in Syria amid warnings that the pandemic is far more widespread in the country than the authorities have acknowledged.

    According to a spokesman three people were medically evacuated. The remainder of those who contracted Covid-19 were suffering from mild symptoms.

    "It caught us at a time where we have seen a very significant rise, or increase, in the level of Covid-19 in Syria," said Jens Laerke, spokesman for the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

    "We believe community transmission is widespread, and that the actual cases exceeds those that are officially recorded."

    Since the start of the pandemic, Syria has officially recorded 137 deaths in government-controlled areas. But the country’s healthcare system is in ruins after nine years of war and the government recently admitted it cannot carry out large scale testing.

    Last week Human Rights Watch reported that health workers in Syria were overwhelmed, many hospitals were beyond capacity, and there were serious shortages of personal protective equipment.