Paris (AFP)

New measures, new reports and highlights: an update on the latest developments in the Covid-19 pandemic around the world.

- Expert committee recommends authorization of Johnson & Johnson vaccine

A committee of experts unanimously recommended on Friday the emergency authorization in the United States of Johnson & Johnson's single-dose vaccine against Covid-19 for people aged 18 and over.

The opinion of this committee, composed mainly of independent scientists, is advisory, but it still confirms the probable authorization of the vaccine by the American health authorities, expected in the wake.

- Medical staff reluctant to vaccinate in Zimbabwe

A significant portion of Zimbabwe's medical staff are reluctant to be vaccinated against Covid-19, a nursing union said on Friday, stressing the lack of clarity on the effectiveness of the vaccine against the variant that has emerged in neighboring South Africa.

- Possible reconfinement in part of France

France resignedly awaited a possible reconfinement on part of its territory to fight the pandemic on Friday, while the government reaffirmed its willingness to take its time faced with the economic and social challenges of such a decision.

- Estonia tightens restrictions

The spread of Covid-19 in Estonia is about to reach critical proportions, a senior health official warned as the government tightens restrictions to deal with one of the highest contagion rates in Europe.

- Partial confinement in the Czech Republic

The Czech government announced on Friday that it would impose on its citizens, from March 1, a ban on movement outside the departments of their places of residence, the rate of contamination by Covid-19 per capita in the Czech Republic being the highest in the world.

- ... and restrictions in Brazilian states

Various state governors or mayors of Brazil have announced restrictions on activities or movements in order to avoid the collapse of health structures with the current outbreak of cases of contamination by the coronavirus.

- Canada approves AstraZeneca vaccine

After Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, Canadian health authorities have announced that they have approved a third vaccine, that of pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca and its version produced in India by the Serum Institute of India.

- Russian vaccine

The Argentinian private laboratory Richmond has signed a preliminary agreement with Russia for the production of the Sputnik V vaccine against Covid-19.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz have raised the possibility of deliveries to Vienna of the Russian vaccine, according to the Kremlin.

- Massive vaccination in Israel

More than half of the Israeli population has received at least a first dose of the vaccine, or 4.65 million of the 9.29 million inhabitants, the Israeli health ministry said.

According to the ministry, 35% of the population has already received a second dose of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine with a rate exceeding 85% in people aged 70 and over.

- More than 2.5 million deaths

The pandemic has killed more than 2.5 million people worldwide since December 2019, according to a report established by AFP on Friday in the middle of the day.

More than 112.9 million cases of infection have been diagnosed.

The United States is the most affected country with 510,134 deaths, ahead of Brazil (252,835), Mexico (183,692), India (156,825) and the United Kingdom (122,070).

These figures are globally underestimated.

They are based on daily reports from national health authorities, without including reassessments based on statistical bases.

- For her 94th birthday, a Canadian does not want "no gift, just the vaccine"

For her mother's 94th birthday, Margot Rockett displayed a banner in front of her mother's house in Toronto with a message mixing humor and indignation: "I'm 94 today! No gifts, just the vaccine, please. "

burx-cn / roc

© 2021 AFP