ANKARA

Anadolu Agency is here with a rundown of the latest developments on the coronavirus pandemic and other news in Turkey and around the world. 

Coronavirus and other developments in Turkey

Turkey on Thursday registered over 14,000 COVID-19 infections and more than 22,000 recoveries in the last 24 hours.

The country’s case count now stands at 2.21 million with recoveries totaling 2.1 million, according to Health Ministry data.

The death toll from the virus reached 20,881 with 239 additional fatalities.

Turkey started a nationwide curfew spanning the traditional New Year’s holiday starting Thursday until early Jan. 4 as part of measures to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Turkish scientists at Bilkent University’s National Nanotechnology Research Center (UNAM) have developed a nanotechnology-based system that diagnoses COVID-19 in 10 seconds with 99% reliability without taking swab tests.

A total of 34 people with suspected links to the Daesh/ISIS terror group were arrested in Turkey.

The Turkish president made a public call for compliance with measures against the novel coronavirus on New Year’s Eve as the world continues to grapple with the pandemic.

COVID-19 updates worldwide

As of Thursday, the global tally for novel coronavirus infections had surpassed 83.3 million, according to US-based Johns Hopkins University.

The World Health Organization (WHO) listed the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine as the first such drug to receive its emergency validation since the coronavirus outbreak began a year ago.

Japan’s capital Tokyo reported a record spike in coronavirus cases despite several measures in place to stem the spread of the deadly infection.

Pakistan reported the highest single-day spike in coronavirus cases during the last two weeks, recording nearly 2,500 new cases, according to official data.

The Czech Republic reported 16,936 new coronavirus cases, the highest single-day spike since the beginning of the pandemic, according to data released by the country’s Health Ministry.

Germany reported its second-highest daily total of coronavirus infections, with 32,552 new cases along with 964 new deaths.

British health authorities reported 964 new fatalities from the novel coronavirus and a record 55,892 new infections.

Spain’s Health Ministry reported 18,047 new coronavirus infections – the highest daily surge in nearly seven weeks.

The French Health Ministry confirmed the first case of the new coronavirus variant found in South Africa.

Other global developments

The death toll from three explosions that rocked the airport in Yemen’s southern port city of Aden on Wednesday rose to 25, the Health Ministry said.

The UK’s post-Brexit trade deal signed with the EU has become a law after receiving royal assent.

Ukraine signed a contract to buy over 1.9 million doses of China’s Sinovac vaccine against COVID-19, authorities announced.

The YPG/PKK terrorist group detained 55 more civilian protesters in eastern Syria over the last two weeks.

Spain and the UK reached a last-minute preliminary deal on the status of post-Brexit Gibraltar.

Afghanistan’s health minister has resigned in connection with a corruption scandal involving his brother and a number of other relatives, the country’s presidency said.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, said the US effort to roll out COVID-19 vaccines to Americans has so far been lackluster.

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