Covid-19 wrap | Johnson wishes Trumps a 'speedy recovery', Mecca to reopen for limited pilgrimages

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  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson wished US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump a rapid recovery.
  • Australia will within weeks allow residents of New Zealand to enter the country without having to quarantine.
  • Scotland's first minister called on one of her lawmakers to resign admitting that she had travelled while suffering symptoms then after testing positive.

UK's Johnson wishes Trump and First Lady 'speedy recovery'  

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who had his own brush with death from Covid-19 this year, on Friday wished US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump a rapid recovery.

"My best wishes to President Trump and the First Lady," Johnson tweeted, after Trump confirmed they had tested positive for Covid-19 and would go into quarantine, a month before the US election.

"Hope they both have a speedy recovery from coronavirus," the prime minister said.

Johnson spent three nights in intensive care in April after contracting Covid-19, and there have been swirling questions about the extent of his recovery ever since.

But he said this week that he had lost weight and was now "fitter than a butcher's dog".


US Pompeo says reconsidering his trip to Asia           

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday he was reconsidering his upcoming trip to Asia as a precaution after President Donald Trump and his wife tested positive to coronavirus.

No decision has been taken yet, Pompeo told journalists on the flight from Rome to Dubrovnik in Croatia.

He told reporters he has made no other changes that would reflect fact that he is fourth in line to succeed the president, if necessary.

Pompeo said that both him and his wife tested negative on the plane 20 minutes prior to lending in Dubrovnik. He said he had last seen Trump on 15 September.


Mecca to reopen for limited pilgrimages after 7-month pause for virus    

Saudi Arabia will reopen the Muslim holy places for the year-round umrah pilgrimage on Sunday, scaled back and with extensive health precautions, seven months after coronavirus prompted its suspension.

The umrah, the pilgrimage that can be undertaken at any time, usually attracts millions of Muslims from across the globe each year.

It will be revived in three stages, with the initial phase seeing just 6,000 citizens and residents already within the kingdom allowed to take part each day.

"In the first stage, the umrah will be performed meticulously and within a specified period of time," Hajj Minister Mohammad Benten told state television last week.


Six months after shutting its borders, Australia's to allow New Zealanders to enter

Australia will within weeks allow residents of New Zealand to enter the country without having to quarantine, Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said on Friday, as Canberra seeks to revive its ailing economy as Covid-19 cases begin to slow.

Australia in March closed its borders to all non-citizens and permanent residents to slow the spread of Covid-19.

Opening its borders for the first time to foreigners, McCormack said New Zealand citizens and residents will be allowed to travel to Australia's most populous state New South Wales and its remote Northern Territory from 16 October.

While Australia has eased restrictions on its closest ally, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said earlier on Friday those who travel to Australia would have to quarantine on their return.


Scotland's first minister calls on lawmaker to resign over breaking Covid rules      

Scotland's first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, called on one of her lawmakers to resign on Friday after Margaret Ferrier admitted that she had travelled while suffering symptoms of Covid-19 and then after testing positive.

"I've spoken to Margaret Ferrier and made clear my view that she should step down as an MP (member of parliament)," Sturgeon said on Twitter.

"I did so with a heavy heart - she is a friend & colleague - but her actions were dangerous & indefensible. I have no power to force an MP to resign but I hope she will do the right thing."


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