A health worker administers a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to an elderly resident in Tel Aviv, Israel, on 2 August 2021 | Bloomberg
A health worker administers a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to an elderly resident in Tel Aviv, Israel, on 2 August 2021 | Bloomberg
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New Delhi: Coronavirus cases continue to rise across the world due to the spread of the Delta variant. Over 22 crore people across the globe have been infected with the virus so far and more than 47 lakh people have died.

ThePrint brings you some important global stories on the coronavirus pandemic.

Israel is registering the highest number of serious cases of Covid since the beginning of September, Indonesia wants to ban backpackers from Bali, and cases in Australia’s New South Wales (NSW) state falls as curbs ease.

Unvaccinated Israelis driving serious Covid cases

Israel is seeing the highest numbers of cases of Covid-19 since the beginning of September.

The rise in serious cases is higher among unvaccinated individuals, who account for nearly two-thirds of active serious cases in Israel, reports Haaretz.

Of the 726 serious cases Sunday, 245 patients are in critical condition while 195 are on ventilators, according to the Israel’s Health Ministry.

Of the six patients who died Saturday, three of them had not received their Covid-19 vaccines and of the 119 people who had died due to the virus over the past one week, nearly 60 per cent of them were unvaccinated.

Israel has registered 1,228,129 Coronavirus cases and 7,541 deaths.

Indonesia’s wants to ban backpackers from Bali as it plans to reopen for tourists

As Indonesia plans to reopen for tourists, it wants to ban backpackers from Bali in a bid to attract “‘quality” tourists.

Luhut Pandjaitan, the coordinating minister for maritime affairs and investment, earlier this month said the island’s reopening would be “conducted carefully and in phases”, adding that “We do not want backpackers so that Bali [remains] clean, and the tourists who come here are of quality,” South China Morning Post reported.

However, many Bali-based business owners say they relied on backpackers for a living.

“If backpackers are banned, I will still get guests but [the occupancy rate] would not be as high as I expected, so this will impact my business”, said Gede Eka Widyasta, who manages the Amed Sunset Hotel.

Explaining how the “intriguing island” has been home to an increasing number of hippies, intrepid travellers, and the surfers since the 1970s, De Neefe, who first came to Bali in 1975, said, “We can’t ignore the contribution that the hippies and the surfers have made. The surfers were among the first, in the ’70s anyway, to reinvent Bali”.

However, Azril Azahari, chairman of the Indonesian Tourism Scholars Association, disagreed.

Speaking about how it was time for the Southeast Asian nation to close its doors to backpackers, he told the SCMP, “I always disagree with allowing backpackers into the country, because they do not contribute much to [state] income, although there’s a lot of them,” he said. “We need to [count the success of tourism] based on tourist spending, or their length of time in Indonesia.”

Indonesia has reported 4,190,763 Covid-19 cases and 140,468 deaths.

Covid cases in Sydney fall as govt eases restrictions

Australia’s New South Wales (NSW) state Monday reported lowest number of new Covid-19 cases in more than three weeks, reported Reuters.

This comes as the government eased restrictions in Sydney amid higher vaccination levels.

Speaking about the decline in new cases to 935 Monday — the lowest daily tally since 27 August and a steady fall from 1,083 Sunday — Premier Gladys Berejiklian said, “We’re feeling more positive than we have in a couple of weeks … but I don’t want any of us to sit back and think the worst is behind us,” and warned that the country may see more deaths in the days ahead.

Last month, over half of the country’s two million residents, who live in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia’s worst-hit suburbs, were under stay-at-home orders due to the Covid spread fueled by the Delta variant.

The recent spike has now forced officials to abandon the “Covid-zero target” and shift to rapid vaccinations to contain the virus.

Australia has registered 87,134 Covid-19 infections and 1,167 deaths.

What else we’re reading:

West Virginia Was a Covid-19 Vaccine Success Story, but Now Cases Are Surging: The Wall Street Journal

Slow but steady has seen the EU win out in the vaccine race: The Guardian

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