Haiti is rapidly deteriorating: Gangs now control 80% of Port-au-Prince and are targeting airports, prisons, and Central Bank


Important Takeaways:

  • Haiti orders curfew after gangs overrun its two largest prisons, free thousands of inmates
  • Authorities in Haiti have ordered a nighttime curfew after an explosion of violence in which gang gunmen overran the two biggest prisons and freed thousands of inmates over the weekend.
  • A 72-hour state of emergency began Sunday night. The government said it would set out to find the killers, kidnappers and other criminals who fled.
  • “The police were ordered to use all legal means at their disposal to enforce the curfew and apprehend all offenders,” said a statement from Finance Minister Patrick Boivert, the acting prime minister.
  • Gangs already were estimated to control up to 80% of Port-au-Prince, the capital. They are increasingly coordinating their actions and choosing once unthinkable targets like the Central Bank.
  • Haiti’s National Police has roughly 9,000 officers to provide security for more than 11 million people, according to the U.N. They are routinely overwhelmed and outgunned
  • But the attack on the National Penitentiary late Saturday shocked Haitians who are accustomed to living under the constant threat of violence.
  • Almost all of the estimated 4,000 inmates escaped.
  • A second Port-au-Prince prison containing around 1,400 inmates was also overrun.

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NYC to implement curfew at four migrant respite centers


Important Takeaways:

  • Adams to implement curfew at four NYC migrant respite centers in response to neighbors’ complaints of panhandling
  • Migrants staying at the affected respite centers will be required to check in each night by 11 p.m. and remain inside until 6 a.m., mirroring standard curfews in place at homeless shelters across the city.
  • The directive marks Mayor Eric Adams’ first major step to address the complaints of neighbors who say they have been assailed by desperate asylum-seekers begging door to door for food and clothes.
  • Exceptions to the curfew include requirements for work, school, and legal and medical appointments. Migrants must apply for permits allowing them to skip the curfew ahead of time, City Hall officials noted.
  • Anyone found violating curfew three times within 30 days will be subject to expulsion from the centers.

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Prices of Food and Fuel have people protesting in Peru

Rev 6:6 NAS And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Peru president imposes curfew in Lima, Callao after protests
  • Protests had erupted across Peru in recent days due to a hike in fuel prices and tolls, during a time of rising food prices.
  • “In view of the acts of violence that some groups have wanted to create… and in order to reestablish peace… the Council of Ministers has approved the declaration of citizen immobility (curfew) from 2:00 am to 11:59 pm on Tuesday, April 5,” he said in a televised message.
  • Castillo’s action to impose movement restrictions — which will cover more than 10 million residents in Lima and Callao — was met with immediate repudiation.
  • “It is like putting an end to traffic accidents by taking vehicles off the roads.”
  • The country’s Consumer Price Index in March saw its highest monthly increase in 26 years, driven by soaring food, transport and education prices, according to the national statistics institute.

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Latvia announces four weeks of lockdown as COVID-19 cases spike

RIGA (Reuters) -Latvia announced a COVID-19 lockdown from Oct. 21 until Nov. 15 to try to slow a spike in infections in one of the least vaccinated European Union countries.

“Our health system is in danger … The only way out of this crisis is to get vaccinated,” Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins said after an emergency government meeting, blaming low vaccination rates for the spike in hospitalizations.

Only 54% of Latvian adults have been fully vaccinated, well below EU average of 74%, EU figures show.

“I have to apologize to the already vaccinated,” Karins said, announcing that shops, restaurants, schools and entertainment will be closed, with only essential services available and a curfew in place from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Only essential manufacturing, construction and critical jobs will be allowed to continue in person.

One of the two largest Riga hospitals began installing makeshift beds for COVID-19 patients in its atrium to cope with the influx, the national broadcaster reported.

No travel restrictions were announced “since infection rates elsewhere are much lower, and we don’t see immediate risks,” Karins said.

New cases in Latvia increased by 49% in the week to Sunday, its health authority said, according to the BNS wire.

The Latvian government cancelled most planned hospital operations last week amid an increased need for beds and staff as COVID-19 cases climb.

The country had reported the second-worst infection numbers in the EU, after neighbor Lithuania, in the fortnight to Oct. 10, with 864 new cases per 10,000 people.

Latvian President Egils Levits tested positive last week, prompting Finland’s President Sauli Niinisto, who had had breakfast with Levits a day earlier, to self-isolate.

(Reporting by Janis Laizans, writing by Andrius Sytas in Vilnius, editing by Chris Reese and Giles Elgood)

As COVID wards fill again, Spanish doctor warns young they’re vulnerable

By Nacho Doce

BARCELONA (Reuters) – A week ago, the COVID-19 hospital ward in Barcelona where doctor Inmaculada Lopez Montesinos works had just a few patients.

Now it is full and the Hospital del Mar has opened two extra floors for such patients as a surge in infection driven by the more contagious Delta variant rips through Spain’s mostly younger, unvaccinated population.

Although mortality is much lower than in earlier waves of the pandemic, Lopez Montesinos said hospitals like hers were under growing pressure. She attributes this sudden jump in cases to a lifting of restrictions across Spain over the past few months, a rise in tourism and students’ summer break.

“All this has been an explosive cocktail that has led us to this fifth wave that has surprised us in mid-July,” the 34-year-old told Reuters, pleading for people to avoid crowds, keep social interactions to a minimum and use face masks.

Facing Spain’s highest 14-day infection rate of 1,068 cases per 100,000 people, more than double the national average, regional authorities in Catalonia, where Barcelona is located, said on Wednesday they would reimpose a curfew on 158 municipalities.

Lopez Montesinos said the typical patient she was seeing was aged 40 or below, did not have pre-existing conditions and was either unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated.

The doctor is not the only one with the words of warning.

Wearing an oxygen mask, Cesar Lopez, a 35-year-old Barcelona businessman, said that before being admitted to the hospital two weeks ago he felt so bad he even thought of leaving a farewell note to his family.

“I would like to tell you that this is something very serious … I also thought that it could be just a cold or a flu but you have to take this really seriously, get vaccinated, think about others,” he said.

“Unfortunately there will be lots of people who won’t be able to tell this tale.”

(Reporting by Nacho Doce, Writing by Emma Pinedo; Editing by Andrei Khalip and Alison Williams)

Vaccinated Hong Kong residents ready to party till 2 a.m. curfew as bars reopen

By Farah Master and Aleksander Solum

HONG KONG (Reuters) -In Hong Kong’s famed party zone Lan Kwai Fong, dormant bars and clubs opened to serve customers again, but only for those who have had at least one vaccine shot – one of the few examples globally of offering greater freedom for the vaccinated. Bar staff need to have gotten at least one coronavirus vaccine dose too, and patrons must register with a government mobile tracking application as they enter.

“Before it was a dead city, now it has loosened a little and everyone is happier,” said Vanessa, a 25-year-old office worker who was visiting the popular bar district. The Chinese special administrative region has kept COVID-19 transmission largely under control. Hong Kong has recorded more than 11,700 coronavirus cases, far lower than other developed cities. The new rules come as authorities there try to encourage the city’s 7.5 million residents to get vaccinated; only about 12% have received their first dose. “The re-opening of bars and the extension of opening hours are incentives for people to receive the vaccination, while the most important thing … is to prevent the spread of the infection, should it hit us again,” said Professor Lau Chak Sing, head of department of Medicine at the University of Hong Kong (HKU). “In an ideal situation, one should complete the course of vaccination to ensure protection,” he said, adding that with Hong Kong’s adequate supply of vaccines, people eager to go to bars would complete both their first and second doses. Venues including nightclubs, karaoke lounges and bathhouses, can stay open until 2 a.m. from Thursday but must operate at half capacity, Sophia Chan, the city’s Health Secretary said. Bars can only seat two people per table.


Customers must scan the government’s app and show their vaccination record – stored electronically on their mobile phones – when they enter. Many residents have declined to use the app because of privacy concerns, choosing instead to write down their details. Restaurants can stay open until 2 a.m. and seat up to 8 people at a table, provided they have received both vaccine doses. But they must have a separate area for unvaccinated customers, and depending on whether staff have been vaccinated, might be required to close at 10 p.m. or midnight. The multi-tiered rules are tough to implement immediately, industry executives said, and many venues cannot open fully as they cannot force staff to get vaccinated. Allan Zeman, chairman of Lan Kwai Fong Group, a property owner and developer in the nightclub district, said that bar owners were desperate to reopen but that there remained a lot of apprehension among staff about vaccinations. “The restrictions will not be easy. Customers themselves need to have one vaccine, that in itself is very limiting,” he said, adding that the measures were a baby step forward and an experiment for both the government and the industry.

Ben Leung, president of Hong Kong’s Licensed Bar and Club Association, said only around 50% of the city’s 1280 bars would open on Thursday with others remaining closed until all their workers had received vaccinations.

Simon Wong, chief executive of LH Group, which operates dozens of restaurants and employs hundreds of staff, wrote on his Facebook page that the new arrangement was “so complicated”. Wong said his restaurants would only be able to seat 4 people per table and stay open until 10 p.m., as many staff did not want to get vaccinated. Hong Kong residents have been hesitant since the vaccination program began in February because of a lack of confidence in China’s Sinovac vaccine and fears of adverse reactions. Some residents have shown greater take-up for the vaccine offered by Germany’s BioNTech in the city but overall figures remain far below satisfactory, said the city’s leader, Carrie Lam.

(Additional reporting by Donny Kwok and Joyce Zhou ; Writing by Farah Master. Editing by Gerry Doyle and Toby Chopra)

COVID-19 cases in Canada’s most populous province could treble: CBC

By David Ljunggren

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Modeling shows that cases of COVID-19 in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, could treble by the end of May unless tough restrictions are imposed, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. said on Friday.

Some hospitals say they are already close to breaking point as a rapidly worsening third wave rips through the province, and the head of its main nurses organization has called for a full lockdown including a curfew.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford, who has so far resisted such wide-ranging steps but is under increasing criticism for how his government has handled the epidemic, is due to make an announcement at 2:30 p.m. Eastern Time (1830 GMT).

Ontario, which accounts for 38% of Canada’s population, announced a record 4,736 daily cases on Thursday and the CBC cited sources as saying this could rocket to 18,000 by end-May if current trends continued.

Canada’s response to the pandemic has been complicated by the division of responsibilities between the 10 provinces and Ottawa, which helps fund healthcare but is not in charge of medical services. The federal government is buying vaccines but the provinces are responsible for inoculations.

Ottawa said Moderna – blaming supply problems – would only be delivering 650,000 doses by the end of April as opposed to 1.2 million. It also said one to two million doses of the 12.3 million doses scheduled for delivery in the second quarter may be delayed until the third quarter.

“We are disappointed, and while we understand the challenges facing suppliers … our government will continue to press Moderna to fulfill its commitments,” Federal Procurement Minister Anita Anand said in a statement.

Separately, a group representing doctors urged authorities to take “extraordinary measures.”

The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) said the 10 provinces should band together to pool resources and allocate them where they were most needed.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Steve Orlofsky and John Stonestreet)

Police chief, officer who fatally shot Black man in Minnesota, resign

(Reuters) -The Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, police chief and the officer who fatally shot Daunte Wright, a 20-year old Black man who struggled with police after a traffic stop, have both resigned, the city’s mayor told a briefing on Tuesday.

Brooklyn Center Mayor Mike Elliott said the resignations came after the city council passed a resolution to dismiss both the chief, Tim Gannon, and the officer who shot Wright, Kim Potter, a 26-year veteran of the police force.

“I’m hoping this will bring some calm to the community,” the mayor said. “We want to send a message to the community that we are taking this situation seriously.”

Wright was shot on Sunday after being pulled over for what police said was an expired car registration. Officers then discovered there was a warrant out for his arrest, and an officer accidentally drew her pistol instead of her Taser during a struggle with Wright, Gannon said on Monday.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday called for a “full and transparent investigation” of the shooting.

Wright’s death ignited two consecutive nights of unrest in Brooklyn Center. Hundreds of protesters clashed with law enforcement officers outside the city’s police headquarters on Monday in defiance of a curfew ordered by Governor Tim Walz.

The region had already been on edge for weeks with the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged with murdering George Floyd, taking place just a few miles away from where the shooting of Wright occurred.

Wright’s relatives have described him as a kind man who liked basketball and worked multiple jobs to support his son.

“My brother lost his life because they were trigger-happy,” his older half-sibling, Dallas Wright, said during a memorial vigil on Monday evening at the spot where he was killed.

“My heart is broken in a thousand pieces… I miss him so much, and it’s only been a day,” his mother, Katie Wright, said at the vigil. “He was my life, he was my son and I can never get that back. Because of a mistake? Because of an accident?”

(Reporting by Nathan Layne in Wilton, Connecticut, Peter Szekely in New York and Susan Heavey in Washington; Editing by Dan Grebler and Jonathan Oatis)

Myanmar police fire to disperse protest, four hurt, one critical

(Reuters) – Police and protesters clashed in Myanmar on Tuesday, with injuries on both sides on the most violent day so far of demonstrations against the military coup that overthrew Aung San Suu Kyi, and a doctor said one woman was unlikely to survive a gun wound in the head.

Three other people were being treated for wounds from suspected rubber bullets after police fired guns, mostly into the air, and used a water cannon to try to clear protesters in the capital Naypyitaw.

State television reported injuries to police during their attempts to disperse protesters – its first acknowledgement of the demonstrations taking place in the country.

The incidents marked the first bloodshed since the military led by army chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing overthrew Suu Kyi’s newly elected government on Feb. 1 and detained her and other politicians from her National League for Democracy (NLD).

The military claimed that the NLD won by fraud – an accusation dismissed by the election committee and Western governments.

Late on Tuesday, police in Myanmar raided the NLD’s headquarters in Yangon, two elected NLD lawmakers said.

The raid was carried out by about a dozen police personnel, who forced their way into the building in the commercial capital after dark, they said.


The protests are the largest in Myanmar for more than a decade, reviving memories of almost half a century of direct army rule and spasms of bloody uprisings until the military began a process of withdrawing from civilian politics in 2011.

The United Nations expressed concern about the use of force against demonstrators.

“I call on the Security Forces to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the right to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression,” Ola Almgren, the UN representative in Myanmar, said.

“The use of disproportionate force against demonstrators is unacceptable.”

According to reports from Naypyitaw, Mandalay and other cities, numerous demonstrators have been injured, some of them seriously, by security forces.

A doctor in the Naypyitaw hospital said the shot woman had suffered what was most likely to be a fatal head wound.

“She hasn’t passed away yet, she’s in the emergency unit, but it’s 100% certain the injury is fatal,” said the doctor, who declined to be identified. “According to the X-ray, it’s a live bullet.”

Neither police nor the hospital responded to a request for comment.

A man had a chest wound but was not in critical condition. It was not clear if he was hit with a bullet or rubber bullet, the doctor said.

State-run MRTV news said a police truck had been destroyed at a demonstration in Mandalay, Myanmar’s second biggest city. It showed footage of the aftermath, including injured police.

MRTV described the protests as being orchestrated by people who wanted to harm the nation’s stability and had acted aggressively. It made no mention of the coup or other demonstrations across the country.

Earlier, witnesses said police fired into the air in Naypyitaw as a crowd refused to disperse. They then blasted them with water cannon while the protesters responded with stones, a witness said.

Footage posted on social media apparently of the woman who was shot showed her with other protesters by what appeared to be a bus-stop shelter some distance from a row of riot police as a water cannon sprayed and several shots could be heard.

The woman, wearing a motorbike helmet, suddenly collapsed. Pictures of her helmet showed what appeared to be a bullet hole. Reuters was not able to verify the video footage or photographs.

Video from the central town of Bago showed police confronting a crowd and firing water cannon. Police arrested at least 27 demonstrators in Mandalay, domestic media reported.

The situation nationwide was quiet by nightfall. Orders banning gatherings of more than four people and a curfew from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. have been imposed on Yangon and Mandalay.


Suu Kyi’s party had won a 2015 election but Myanmar’s transition to democracy was brought to a halt by the Feb. 1 coup staged as her government was due to start a second term.

Promises on Monday from Min Aung Hlaing to eventually hold a new election drew scorn. He said the junta would form a “true and disciplined democracy,” different to previous eras of military rule, which brought years of isolation and poverty.

He gave no time frame but the junta has said a state of emergency would last one year.

A civil disobedience movement affecting hospitals, schools and government offices shows no sign of ending but the crowds in Yangon, Myanmar’s former capital and commercial hub, appeared smaller on Tuesday than the previous day.

“The main thing is we don’t want a coup,” said a 24-year-old woman protester in Yangon. “If we young people don’t come out, who will?”

Activists are also seeking the abolition of a 2008 constitution drawn up under military supervision that gave the generals a veto in parliament and control of several ministries, and for a federal system in ethnically diverse Myanmar.

Western governments have widely condemned the coup, although there has been little concrete action to press the generals.

The U.N. Security Council has called for the release of SuuKyi and others. The U.N. Human Rights Council will hold a special session on Friday to discuss the crisis.

Suu Kyi won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 for campaigning for democracy and spent nearly 15 years under house arrest.

The 75-year-old faces charges of illegally importing six walkie-talkies and is being held in detention until Feb. 15. Her lawyer said he has not been allowed to see her.

Suu Kyi remains hugely popular at home despite damage to her international reputation over the plight of the Muslim Rohingya minority.

(Reporting by Reuters staff; Writing by Matthew Tostevin, Lincoln Feast, Robert Birsel; Editing by Richard Pullin, Angus MacSwan)

Shops boarded up as Dutch brace for fourth night of coronavirus riots

By Anthony Deutsch

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – The Netherlands braced on Tuesday for a fourth consecutive night of coronavirus anti-lockdown riots, with some shops boarding their windows and sending staff home early for safety.

Dutch police detained more than 180 people on Monday night, where roaming groups set fires, threw rocks and looted stores in several cities.

The Netherlands’ first curfew since World War Two was imposed on Saturday despite weeks of falling infections, after the National Institute for Health (RIVM) said a faster-spreading variant first found in England was causing a third of cases.

A hospital in Rotterdam warned visitors of patients to stay away, after rioters tried to attack hospitals in various cities in the past days.

“We have had riots in the past, but it’s rare to have this for several nights across the entire country,” said National Police spokeswoman Suzanne van de Graaf. “It’s not only in known problem areas, but much more widespread.”

Riot police with shields and batons were called out in more than 10 cities, many of which had issued emergency decrees to provide officers with greater powers to conduct searches.

Police had scuffled with rioters in several cities late into the night, chasing them down narrow streets with vans or on foot as helicopters hovered overhead.

In Amsterdam on Monday, groups of youths threw fireworks, broke store windows and attacked a police truck, but were broken up by a massive police presence.

Ten police officers were injured in Rotterdam, where 60 rioters were detained overnight after widespread looting and destruction in the city center, a police spokeswoman said. Supermarkets in the port city were emptied, while rubbish bins and vehicles were set ablaze.

Two photographers were hurt after being targeted by rock-throwing gangs, one in Amsterdam and another in the nearby town of Haarlem, police said.

Coronavirus infections have been falling in recent weeks, with the number of new cases down by 8% over the past week. A little under 4,000 new infections were reported on Tuesday, the smallest daily increase since Nov 24.

But the RIVM said the situation in the Netherlands was still very serious as a result of the more contagious variant that has caused a massive surge in cases in Britain.

Van de Graaf said much of the aggression during the three days of unrest had been targeted at police officers. More than 470 people have been arrested, with riot police deploying water cannon and officers on horseback in several places.

Schools and non-essential shops across the Netherlands have been shut since mid-December. Bars and restaurants were closed two months earlier. The country’s death toll stands at 13,664, with 956,867 infections to date.

(Reporting by Anthony Deutsch; Editing by Clarence Fernandez, Catherine Evans and Peter Graff)