Spain Current Affairs - 2020

WHO warns about a New and Dangerous phase of COVID-19

Following reports of relaxation in lockdown by various major economies around the world, on 19th June 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that this could lead to a new and dangerous phase of the Covid-19 pandemic. As people and governments across the world are tired of lockdowns, the WHO reminded that the Covid-19 virus spread has accelerated.

Background

This warning came after reports from Italy came through that from two cities of Italy (Milan and Turin), samples of sewage water collected from 18th December 2019 have traces of the Covid-19 virus. The first case in Italy was reported in mid-February, which means the virus was already present 2 months before the first case was detected. This study was conducted at the National Health Institute Body (ISS).

A similar study in Spain was conducted in which traces of the Covid-19 virus were found in sewage water samples collected from Barcelona in the month of January.

This indicates that the symptoms of the virus and the extent to which it has spread are still unknown.

Covid-19 Vaccine Update

Indian scientist Soumya Swaminathan (currently- Chief Scientist at WHO) has recently said that she expects 2 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccine to be available by the end of 2020 but for reaching the distribution stage of the vaccine, the exact time frame still depends on the success of the trails.

United States company Moderna which is working on a messenger-Ribonucleic Acid (mRNA) vaccine has recently announced that they are likely to launch trails for Phase 3 of the vaccine next month.  The clinical trials are conducted in III phases for a vaccine: In Phase I, it’s tested in a small sample of healthy humans, while in Phase II efforts are made to test in a larger sample of healthy humans having different age groups for the efficiency, safety and also to determine the correct dose required as the group. Phase III trials are performed in a much broader population.

April 23: World Book Day

Every year, World Book Day or International Day of Book or World Book and Copyrights Day is organised by United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Highlights

The World Book Day is being celebrated since 1995. The idea of World Book Day was given a writer Vicente Clavel Andres to celebrate World Book Day on the death anniversary of author Miguel de Cervantes.

Initially his birthdate October 7 was proposed. But as the death anniversaries of William Shakespeare and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega also falls on April 23, the later was selected.

However, in reality Shakespeare died 10 days after Cervantes. This was because when the legends lived, Spain used Gregorian calendar and England used Julian Calendar.

Miguel de Cervantes

Miguel de Cervantes was a Spanish writer. He was well known for the classic western literature “Don Quixote”. He lived in 17th century. He was a soldier, poet, novelist, tax collector and a playwright. He was forced to leave Spain and hence he worked as a cardinal in Rome.