June 16 coronavirus news

By Helen Regan and Steve George, CNN

Updated 2:11 AM ET, Wed June 17, 2020
5 Posts
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12:51 a.m. ET, June 16, 2020

Mexico temporarily forbids workers from going to Canada amid Covid-19 fears

From CNN’s Paula Newton in Ottawa

Mexico will conduct a safety review of Canadian health policies and procedures before allowing any more temporary workers to travel to Canada to work in the agricultural sector. 

“This is a temporary pause in order to determine the circumstances surrounding the safety conditions on farms,” said Oscar Mora, spokesman for the Mexican embassy in Ottawa. 

Mora said that Ambassador Juan Jose Gomez Camacho, on behalf of the Mexican government, has been in daily communication with the Canadian government to try and understand why and how hundreds of Mexican workers have been infected with Covid-19, weeks after completing a mandatory 14-day quarantine in Canada. 

CNN has confirmed that two migrant workers from Mexico have died in the last few weeks and dozens more workers have been treated in hospital. 

The local health unit in Windsor-Essex, Ontario, where the deaths occurred, acknowledges that communal housing on farms and cramped conditions in packing facilities and greenhouses has contributed to the virus spread.

The temporary ban means that up to five thousand Mexican workers are currently waiting to come to Canada. 

More than 60,000 migrant workers travel to Canada every year for seasonal work in agricultural industries.

12:48 a.m. ET, June 16, 2020

New Beijing cluster spreads beyond Xinfadi market 

Form CNN’s Shawn Deng and Steven Jiang in Beijing

At least 29 neighborhoods are under lockdown in Beijing as 106 Covid-19 cases linked to the city's Xinfadi wholesale market have been confirmed in the last five days, according to the country’s National Health Commission (NHC). 

Here's breakdown of the new lockdowns:

  • 11 neighborhoods surrounding the Xinfadi market are in lockdown.
  • 2 other markets have been shut and surrounding neighborhoods are under restrictions. 
  • 10 neighborhoods surrounding the Yuguandong market, which has three linked cases, have been closed off.
  • 7 neighborhoods surrounding the Tiantao Honglian market, with one confirmed case, have also been closed.

The scenic tourist area of Shichachai, which houses a residential area, has also been put under heavy restrictions to curb the virus.

Spread to other provinces: NHC officials confirmed the virus from the market cluster has spread to at least three other provinces including Hebei, Sichuan and Liaoning. 

One patient in Sichuan had been to Beijing to visit her husband who worked in the market and took a flight back on June 9. Passengers on that flight are being asked to report to local authorities.

12:38 a.m. ET, June 16, 2020

Coronavirus cluster in Beijing is a "significant event," WHO says

From CNN’s Amanda Watts

The World Health Organization called a coronavirus cluster of more than 100 cases in Beijing a “significant event.”

Speaking during a news briefing on Monday, Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO’s Health Emergencies Program, said, “In China, when you spend over 50 days without having any significant local transmission the cluster like this is a concern, and it needs to be investigated and controlled.”

“In that sense, it is big news. Within the grand scheme of things around the number of cases per day around the world, it's not, but it is significant event,” Ryan said.

“We're always concerned for clusters,” said Maria Van Kerkhove, a WHO infectious disease epidemiologist.

Van Kerkhove said every single case needs to be addressed, “but clusters are a special condition, because in any country we need to understand why is there the clustering?”

Ryan said now is the time to investigate what’s driving the new infections.

Some background: Beijing is reintroducing strict lockdown measures and rolling out mass testing after a fresh cluster of novel coronavirus cases emerged from the city's largest wholesale food market, sparking fears of a resurgence of the deadly outbreak.

The cases are linked to Xinfadi market in the southwest of the city, which supplies most of the capital's fresh fruit and vegetables. The market, which also sells meat and seafood, has been shut down since Saturday.

The new cluster has sent shock waves throughout China, with Beijing's municipal government spokesperson Xu Hejian describing it as "an extraordinary period" during a news conference Sunday.

Read more about the Beijing outbreak:

12:35 a.m. ET, June 16, 2020

More than 8 million coronavirus cases have been confirmed worldwide

From CNN’s Samantha Beech in Atlanta

At least 8 million coronavirus cases have been reported worldwide, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center.

Johns Hopkins reported 8,018,742 cases as of 12:30 a.m. ET Tuesday. The total number of deaths related to coronavirus globally is at least 436,406.

CNN reported just over a week ago that global cases had surpassed 7 million, on Sunday June 7.

CNN is tracking worldwide coronavirus cases here:

12:32 a.m. ET, June 16, 2020

Mexico's coronavirus cases surpass 150,000 

From CNN's Matt Rivers in Mexico City

Mexico's coronavirus case count reached a total of 150,254 on Monday, following an increase of 3,427 infections in the past 24 hours. 

The country's health ministry also reported 439 people have died from the virus since Sunday.

A total of 17,580 people are reported to have died in Mexico from coronavirus since the pandemic started.