Coronavirus update: Test targets focus of PMQs discussion

Published by Ross Hindle on April 22nd 2020, 1:01pm

Foreign secretary Dominic Raab has pledged that the UK will be testing 100,000 people a day within the next eight days.

He led the first ever PMQs today in the absence of Boris Johnson, who is retiring at Chequers, the official country residence of the PM.

New opposition leader Sir Keir Starmer criticised the government's response as being "very slow and way behind other European countries".

In Wales, senior doctors have written to the first minister, Mark Drakeford, and asked him to restrict people from travelling to their second homes so as to reduce the risk of transmission in rural communities.

Global confirmed cases now stand at over 2.5 million, although experts anticipate the real number to be much higher. The death toll is closing in on 180,000.

In Spain, parliament is currently debating on whether or not to extend lockdown by two weeks.

But the most news today comes from the US, where President Trump has said that applications for "green cards" -- granting permanent residence in America -- will be halted for 60 days.

Most visa services in the country have already been suspended. Some of the president's more vocal critics have said the move is largely a distraction tactic to move attention away from his administration's handling of the outbreak -- US deaths are close to 45,000, which is almost a quarter of the global figure.

CDC director in the US, Robert Redfield, has warned that the country may face a second wave of the outbreak, which he believes could be worse than the first.

He said such a situation would put "unimaginable strain" on the US healthcare system.

And finally, in the midwest, the state of Missouri has announced that it will be suing the Chinese government over its handling of the outbreak, with the state's attorney general Eric Schmitt saying that the impact had been "very real" and that the Chinese government "lied to the world about the danger of Covid-19".

The Chinese foreign ministry has said that the "frivolous lawsuit has no factual or legal basis", and a spokesperson described the move as "really absurd".

The next coronavirus update will follow tomorrow.

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Authored By

Ross Hindle
Content Director
April 22nd 2020, 1:01pm

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