Dubai lifts lockdown on Al Ras and Naif commercial districts

Men in masks and disposable gloves to help curb the spread of the coronavirus, walk through a traditional souq as many shops remain closed due to the outbreak in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Sunday, April 26, 2020. (AP)
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Updated 27 April 2020

Dubai lifts lockdown on Al Ras and Naif commercial districts

  • Both areas recorded no COVID-19 cases in the last two days
  • Restrictions on movement will remain in place between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

DUBAI: Dubai said on Sunday it has lifted its full lockdown on two commercial districts known as Al-Ras and Naif, which had been sealed off as part of efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus.
The Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management said it took the decision as both areas recorded no COVID-19 cases in the last two days. 
Intensive preventive measures implemented in the densely populated and commercially active areas of Naif and Al-Ras included rigorous sterilization operations and extensive medical tests.  
It said more than 6,000 tests were conducted among Al-Ras and Naif residents in less than a month.
Restrictions on movement will remain in place in these areas between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. - the same as the rest of the emirate.
The committee said the decision to reduce the 24-hour controls on movement follow the success of efforts to combat COVID-19 in Dubai.
Dubai on Friday allowed dine-in cafes and restaurants to resume business with a maximum capacity of 30 percent and shopping malls to be reopened partially. Mosques, cinemas and playgrounds remained closed. 
The UAE has reported more than 10,300 cases and 76 deaths resulting from the virus.

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Libyan deputies pledge to end divisions

Updated 28 November 2020

Libyan deputies pledge to end divisions

  • At the end of talks, 123 of the parliament’s 180 members pledged to put an end to “hate speech” and “divisions”
  • They vowed to hold “parliamentary elections and to complete the transition as soon as possible”

TANGIER: More than 120 Libyan deputies pledged Saturday in Morocco to “end the divisions” that undermine their country, starting by convening the elected parliament as soon as they return home.
The House of Representatives has not met for two years, and Libya has been wracked by violence and chaos since the toppling and killing of dictator Muammar Qaddafi in 2011.
Two rival administrations have been vying for control of the country — the Government of National Accord and an eastern administration backed by part of the elected parliament.
The latter is deeply divided, with sessions taking place in parallel in the east and west.
At the end of five days of talks in Tangier, Morocco, 123 of the parliament’s 180 members pledged on Saturday to put an end to “hate speech” and “divisions” that undermine Libyan institutions.
They vowed to hold “parliamentary elections and to complete the transition as soon as possible,” and that all members of the House of Representatives would meet in session “as soon as they return” to Libya.
The session will take place in Ghadames, a desert oasis near Libya’s borders with both Algeria and Tunisia.
Ghadames is considered to be far from the centers of power.
“Having 123 deputies at the same table is in itself a success,” Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita said.
“Libya needs a House of Representatives that plays its role... The next meeting in Libya will have a great impact on political dialogue,” he said.
The talks come at a time of increasing moves to break the deadlock in the country, which has Africa’s biggest oil reserves.
In mid-November, a UN-sponsored political dialogue forum in Tunis agreed to hold elections on December 24, 2021, but not on who will lead the transition.