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Live COVID-19 updates: Japanese PM pledges in 1st policy speech bold climate change initiative, COVID-19 containment – Xinhua

File photo shows that Yoshihide Suga, Japan’s new prime minister, speaks during a press conference in Tokyo, Japan, Sept. 16, 2020. (Carl Court/Pool via Xinhua)

– Japanese PM pledges in 1st policy speech bold climate change initiative, COVID-19 containment

– COVID-19 leads to loss of 300,000 jobs in Cambodia: PM

– Russia reports new record of daily infections

– Aussie health minister expects vaccinations to commence in early 2021

BEIJING, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) — The following are the updates on the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

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TOKYO — Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Monday made a number of pledges during the delivery of his first policy speech in parliament since taking office last month, with one of his priorities being to cut greenhouse gas emissions in Japan to net zero by 2050.

Suga, in his address at the start of the 41-day extraordinary Diet session through Dec. 5, said that his immediate focus, however, was the COVID-19 pandemic which has severely impacted the nation’s now recession-hit economy which has worsened to levels not seen since before the war.

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A vendor wearing mask is seen in front of the Independence Monument in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, March 25, 2020. (Xinhua/Mao Pengfei)

PHNOM PENH — Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen said on Monday that the impact of COVID-19 has caused about the loss of 300,000 jobs, mainly in the tourism and garment industries.

However, some of the workers in the sectors have resumed work or got new jobs as the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic has been brought under control, he said when addressing the groundbreaking ceremony for two river bridges in eastern part of the capital Phnom Penh.

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VIENTIANE — Laos is expected to launch a fast-track immigration service next week that will allow Chinese travelers to enter the country more easily with a shorter quarantine period.

New measures will be taken to facilitate travel for Chinese nationals while continuing to ensure protection against COVID-19, local daily Vientiane Times quoted Lao Deputy Minister of Health Phouthone Meaungpak as saying on Monday.

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Subway workers clean the train during the disinfection procedure at the depot Sviblovo in Moscow, Russia, on Oct. 22, 2020. (Xinhua/Evgeny Sinitsyn)

MOSCOW — Russia registered 17,347 COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours, a new all-time high, as infections have been resurging, the country’s COVID-19 response center said Monday.

Russia’s cumulative number of coronavirus cases has grown to 1,531,224, including 26,269 deaths and 1,146,096 recoveries, the center said in a statement.

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File photo taken on April 1, 2020 shows a researcher working at a lab of University of Queensland (UQ) in Brisbane, Australia. (University of Queensland/Handout via Xinhua)

CANBERRA — Australian Health Minister Greg Hunt said on Monday that a COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be made available in the first quarter of 2021.

The Australian government announced in September that it had secured onshore manufacturing agreements for two candidate vaccines being developed by the University of Oxford/AstraZeneca and the University of Queensland/CSL in deals worth a combined 1.7 billion Australian dollars (1.2 billion U.S. dollars).

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HONG KONG — Hong Kong’s Center for Health Protection (CHP) reported eight new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, taking Hong Kong’s total tally to 5,303.

All the newly reported cases had a travel history during the incubation period, the CHP said in a statement.

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BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN — Brunei reported no new cases of COVID-19 on Monday with the national tally of cases standing at 148.

According to Brunei’s Ministry of Health, no more recoveries were recorded, maintaining the total number of recovered cases at 143. There are still two active cases being treated at the National Isolation Center, who were recorded on Oct. 14 and 22.

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