Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m Ted Regencia in Kuala Lumpur.
- Australia’s second-most populous state of Victoria has reported the lowest daily rise in new infections in seven weeks.
- The use of plasma treatment has been given the greenlight by the Food and Drug Administration in the US, the country worst-affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
- More than 23.3 million people around the world have been diagnosed with COVID-19, and more than 15 million have recovered. At least 806,500 people have died, according to Johns Hopkins University.
Here are the latest updates:
Monday, August 24
01:20 GMT – China reports 16 imported coronavirus cases
China’s National Health Commission reported on Monday 16 imported coronavirus cases in the mainland as of the end of Sunday, slightly up from 12 imported cases the previous day.
The commission also said that for the eighth consecutive day, there were no new local infections detected in the country, although 27 new people were said to be asymptomatic.
China has a total of 84,967, while the death toll remains unchanged at 4,634.
00:40 GMT – Seoul to mandate masks starting on Monday
The use of masks while outdoors is now mandatory in Seoul, South Korea’s capital.
Seo Jeong-hyup, acting mayor of Seoul, issued the order hours after the country reported 397 new coronavirus cases on Sunday – the highest since early March.
According to reports, there have been more than 2,600 cases in the past 10 days. The country has reported almost 17,400 cases and 309 deaths.
00:05 GMT – Australia’s Victoria reports lowest daily rise in infections in seven weeks
Australia’s second-most populous state of Victoria has reported 116 new cases of coronavirus, the lowest daily rise in seven weeks.
Melbourne, the state’s capital, has been in a strict lockdown and curfew since a new wave of the outbreak emerged a few weeks ago.
Officials say 15 people died from the disease over the past 24 hours.
Australia now has more than 24,800 cases and over 500 deaths.
00:01 GMT – Pakistan’s Peshawar shuts hotels after employees test of COVID-19
Pakistani authorities have closed about two dozen hotels in a scenic tourist area in the country’s northwest after dozens of hotel employees tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the Associated Press news agency.
As many as 47 hotel employees who tested positive for COVID-19 were quarantined at the hotels where they worked.
Pakistan has confirmed more than 275,000 coronavirus infections and nearly 6,300 deaths since reporting its first case in February.
21:30 GMT (Sunday) – FDA authorises plasma treatment for COVID-19
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorised the use of blood plasma from patients who have recovered from COVID-19 to treat those still battling the disease.
The FDA said early evidence suggests blood plasma can decrease mortality and improve the health of patients when given during the first three days of their hospitalisation.
“It appeared that the product is safe and we’re comfortable with that and we continue to see no concerning safety signals,” said Peter Marks, director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research said on a conference call with reporters.
You can read more on that story here.
For all the key developments from Sunday, August 23, go here.
Al Jazeera and news agencies