An Iranian newspaper criticised a close associate of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Sunday for disclosing that slain military commander Qassem Soleimani paid salaries to fighters of an Iranian proxy group in Syria. A clip circulating on social media in recent days showed former Energy Minister and the head of the Mostazafan Foundation Parviz Fattah saying that Soleimani had once asked for help to pay the salaries of members of the Fatemiyoun brigade, an Iran-backed militia made up of Afghan Shia fighters. The Fatemiyoun brigade has fought in Syria, where Soleimani coordinated militias to fight alongside the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.
- Al Jazeera
A 63-year-old man was shot dead in the Philippines after threatening village officials and police with a scythe at a coronavirus checkpoint, police said on Saturday. The man is believed to have been drunk when he threatened village officials and police manning the checkpoint in the town of Nasipit in the southern province of Agusan del Norte on Thursday, a police report said. More: 'Shoot them dead': Duterte warns against violating lockdown Attacked & underpaid: Medics in Philippines battle stigma, virus Duterte presses on with 'drug war' despite coronavirus lockdown "The suspect was cautioned by a village health worker ... for not wearing a face mask," the report said. "But the suspect got
- Arabian Business
Dubai Police have requested residents leaving their homes to shop for groceries or seek medical treatment to keep their receipts as proof to present to authorities if stopped by a patrol car or detected by a radar. The announcement comes as authorities extended the nation's 24-hour sterilisation programme to a renewable two weeks, with stricter measures on the movement of people and vehicles. Radars will record all violators during the lockdown, so residents are requested to keep documents proving the reason behind their movement. Authorities earlier provided permits for those seeking permission to leave their homes, however the service has been halted and is now being replaced with the latest move requiring them to keep receipts.
The Iranian regime has been blaming the US and its allies, particularly Israel, for the country's coronavirus crisis, according to evidence presented in a report from IranWire written by Shaya Lerner and David Andrew Weinberg. As of Sunday, 3,603 in Iran have died from coronavirus, and there are 58,226 confirmed cases. The Iranian regime has been accused of mishandling its response to the coronavirus outbreak in the country, including deliberately covering up details of the outbreak to maximize turnout in parliamentary elections. The Islamic Republic's highest authority Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had initially said that the coronavirus outbreak is “not that big of a deal.” However, as the outbreak has worsened in the country, high-ranking officials regime officials have since shifted their narrative to blame the US and Israel.
- Al Jazeera
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending Americans wear masks in public to protect against the coronavirus. But President Donald Trump says wearing masks is voluntary, and that he has chosen not to follow that advice. The United States is now the global epicentre of the pandemic, with more than 277,000 confirmed cases. Al Jazeera's Shihab Rattansi reports from Washington, DC.
- Arabian Business
Google is publishing users' location data as it aims to help governments around the world tackle the Covid-19 pandemic by proving the effectiveness of measures such as social distancing. The data includes the movement of users from 131 countries including GCC countries UAE and Saudi Arabia, and will be made available on a special website that will "chart movement trends over time by geography", according to a blog post by Google's head of Google Maps and the company's chief health officer Karen DeSalvo. Such trends include the increase or decrease in visits to locations such as offices, homes, shops and parks. In the UAE, visits to restaurants, cafes, shopping centres, theme parks, museums, libraries
Iran's new cases of coronavirus have dropped for the fourth consecutive day, official figures released Saturday showed, as a two-week holiday in the Islamic Republic came to an end. Iran registered 2,560 new infections of COVID-19 in the previous 24 hours, health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour told a televised news conference. It is the fourth consecutive drop in new cases since Tehran declared 3,111 on March 31. Jahanpour said there were an additional 158 fatalities from the virus, bringing the country's official death toll to 3,452.