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Pakistan shuts restaurants with no distancing

KARACHI, Pakistan — Pakistan authorities have closed more than 100 restaurants and six wedding halls in the financial capital of Karachi over violations of social distancing rules amid a sudden increase in COVID-19 deaths.

The government has also imposed a lockdown in some of the city’s high-risk areas to contain the spread of the coronavirus. A similar crackdown over social distancing rules has also been ordered in other parts of the country.

Pakistanis have been seen routinely violating social distancing since last month when wedding halls were allowed to open on the condition they adhere to such rules.


Authorities earlier reported 13 out of the country’s 15 single-day COVID-19 fatalities in southern Sindh province, of which Karachi is the capital.

Pakistan has reported 313,431 confirmed cases with 6,499 deaths.

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— Trump says he and first lady tested positive for coronavirus

— US hiring l ikely slowed in September for 3rd straight month

— Pfizer CEO pushes back against Trump claim on vaccine timing

— Democrats controlling the House narrowly have passed a $2.2 trillion COVID-19 relief bill, a move that came as top-level talks on a smaller, potentially bipartisan measure dragged on toward an uncertain finish.

— Mexican workers have confounded economists by sending home huge sums of money during the coronavirus pandemic. Experts had predicted that as the American economy took a dive, migrant workers would send their families less money, known as remittances.

— Madrid and its suburbs are preparing to enter a soft lockdown that restricts trips in and out of the Spanish capital following a weeks-long political turf fight over Europe’s latest infection hot spot.

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Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

CANBERRA, Australia — Australia and New Zealand have announced a partial opening of their borders to international travel between the neighboring countries.

Australian Transport Minister Michael McCormack says passengers will be able to fly to Sydney and Darwin without going into quarantine from Oct. 16 if they have spent at least two weeks in parts of New Zealand that are not considered COVID-19 hot spots.

But New Zealand will continue insist on travelers from Australia going into hotel quarantine for two weeks on arrival.

McCormack says, “We want to open up Australia to the world. This is the first part of it.”

The two countries separated by the Tasman Sea have long said that the return of international travel would begin with a so-called Trans-Tasman Bubble. McCormack says Australian authorities have concluded that New Zealand posed a low risk of COVID-19 transmission to Australia.

But travelers who have visited a New Zealand hot spot — defined as a region that has reported three new infections a day over three days — won’t be exempt from quarantine.

McCormack says the South Australia state capital Adelaide would likely become the next city to allow quarantine-free travel from New Zealand.

He says when New Zealand would allow quarantine-free