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March 16 coronavirus news
By Ben Westcott, Helen Regan, Adam Renton, Meg Wagner and Veronica Rocha, CNN
Malaysia imposes nationwide movement control order
From Eric Cheung in Hong Kong
Malaysia will impose a nationwide movement control order from Wednesday until the end of the month to combat spread of coronavirus, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced Monday night.
The order includes a "comprehensive restriction on movements and public gatherings" including a ban on all religious, sports, social, and cultural activities, reported the state-run Bernama News Agency. All houses of worship and business premises will be closed, except for supermarkets, wet markets, grocery shops and convenience stores selling daily necessities.
Most government premises, except those providing essential services such as water and electricity, will be closed, Bernama reported. All educational institutions will also be closed until the end of the month.
Malaysians will be banned from traveling abroad, while foreign tourists and visitors will be restricted from entering the country, it added.
“I appeal to everyone to always comply with this movement control order. It is our common responsibility that we must implement as citizens who are concerned about our family, our society and our country," Muhyiddin said.
Colombia will close borders to slow coronavirus spread
From CNN’s Jackie Castillo
Colombian President Iván Duque announced Monday his decision to close the country's borders to protect the health and well-being of citizens.
In a series of tweets, Duque explained the closure, which will go into effect midnight local time Monday through May 30, will restrict entry and exit for all citizens and foreign nationals.
According to the statement, cargo will be allowed to enter the country through authorized points of entry.
Los Angeles will stop issuing parking tickets for next two weeks, mayor says
From CNN's Sarah Moon
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said the city will stop issuing parking tickets for the next two weeks effective immediately.
Speaking at a news conference on Monday, Garcetti said there are more cars parked on city streets because people are working from home or are taking care of others.
More on Los Angeles: On Sunday, Garcetti ordered the closure of bars, nightclubs, entertainment venues and gyms until March 31 in an effort to prevent the spread of coronavirus. His order also limits restaurants to takeout and delivery orders only.
Social Security offices will close in-person services starting Tuesday
From CNN's Ellie Kaufman
Beginning Tuesday, Social Security offices will close for in-person appointments and will only provide phone service.
The agency said it is doing this to protect older Americans.
The agency has come under fire from the union representing SSA workers, which filed an OSHA complaint alleging that some workers weren't being allowed to telework, putting themselves and the people SSA services in danger from coronavirus.
The agency said despite closing in-person services, it will still be able to provide help online or over the phone.
WWE will hold WrestleMania 36 in an empty Orlando arena
From CNN's Kevin Dotson
World Wrestling Entertainment has announced that it is changing the setting of its flagship event WrestleMania.
WrestleMania 36, which had been scheduled to take place at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, will now take place at the WWE's training facility in Orlando, Florida, in front of only essential personnel.
The event will still take place as scheduled on April 5 at 7 p.m. ET.
All WrestleMania-related WWE events scheduled in Tampa will not take place.
Seattle mayor announces $5 million in grocery vouchers to help families
From CNN’s Raja Razek
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced Monday the city will provide "$5 million in grocery vouchers to help families impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic."
"The new grocery voucher program will provide 6,250 families $800 in vouchers to purchase food, cleaning supplies, and other household goods at any Safeway store in Washington state," she said in a statement.
Families should be receiving a total of $800 in vouchers that can be used immediately "at any Washington state Safeway store to purchase food and household goods, not including tobacco, alcohol, lottery tickets, and fuel. Voucher use requires a free Safeway membership," according to the statement.
This is the latest in a series of actions that Durkan implemented recently during the coronavirus outbreak in Seattle.
Over the past week, Durkan placed a temporary moratorium on residential evictions. Durkan also announced a relief package that included "deferred business taxes and a stabilization fund," according to the statement.
UFC will postpone its next three events
From CNN's Kevin Dotson
Ultimate Fighting Championship is postponing its next three events, UFC president Dana White announced during an interview with ESPN.
The last of the postponed events was scheduled to have taken place on April 11.
White said the UFC still plans to host its April 18 pay-per-view event, which is currently scheduled to take place at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. White said they hope to keep the event at Barclays but will look at relocating it, including moving it outside of the US if necessary.
The UFC raised eyebrows last weekend by being one of the only major American sporting outfits to stage an event when they held their scheduled fights in an empty arena in Brasilia, Brazil.
Minnesota orders temporary closures of restaurants, bars and other public places
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz signed an executive order on Monday requiring the temporary closure of all restaurants and bars to dine-in customers to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.
Walz also ordered the temporary closure of other public places, including theaters, museums, fitness centers, and community clubs.
The order goes into effect Tuesday at 5 p.m. local time until March 27.