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First Covid-19 vaccines arrive at London hospital as Britain gets ready for rollout

Britain is preparing to become the first country to roll out the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine this week, initially making the shot available at hospitals before distributing stocks to doctors’ clinics, the government said on Sunday.

Footage posted by the National Health Service (NHS) showed boxes containing doses of the vaccine being delivered to Croydon University Hospital in south London and being stored in a special, securely locked fridge.

“This is just so exciting. It’s a momentous occasion,” said Louise Coghlan, joint chief pharmacist at the Croydon health service.

“To know that they are here and we are much the first in the country to actually receive the vaccine, and therefore the first in the world, is just amazing. I’m so proud.”

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Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani tests positive for coronavirus

US President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani has tested positive for Covid-19, Trump said on Sunday, after a wave of travel by the former New York mayor seeking to persuade Republican state lawmakers to overturn the election results.

The 76-year-old Giuliani is the latest in a long string of people close to the White House, including Trump himself, sickened in a pandemic that has killed more than 280,000 Americans.

Giuliani has been spearheading Trump’s floundering effort to overturn his Nov 3 election loss to Democratic President-elect Joe Biden through a flurry of lawsuits.

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Iran says scientist killed by satellite-controlled machine gun

A satellite-controlled machine gun with “artificial intelligence” was used in last week’s assassination of a top nuclear scientist in Iran, the deputy commander of the Revolutionary Guards told local media Sunday.

Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was driving on a highway outside Iran’s capital Teheran with a security detail of 11 Guards on November 27, when the machine gun “zoomed in” on his face and fired 13 rounds, said rear-admiral Ali Fadavi.

The machine gun was mounted on a Nissan pickup and “focused only on martyr Fakhrizadeh’s face in a way that his wife, despite being only 25cm away, was not shot,” Mehr news agency quoted him as saying.

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Indonesia receives first Covid-19 vaccine from China’s Sinovac

Indonesia received its first shipment of coronavirus vaccine from China on Sunday, President Joko Widodo said, as the government prepares a mass inoculation programme.

Mr Widodo said in an online briefing that the Southeast Asian country received 1.2 million doses from China’s Sinovac Biotech, a vaccine Indonesia has been testing since August.

He added that the government plans to receive another 1.8 million doses in early January.

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Netflix declines to flag up to viewers that The Crown is fiction

US streaming platform Netflix has rejected a call from Britain’s culture minister to add disclaimers at the start of episodes of its hit series The Crown to make clear that it is a work of fiction, several British media reported on Sunday.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden is among several prominent figures in Britain who have argued that the scripted series, in which actors play members of the royal family, risked giving viewers a wrong and damaging impression of the royals.

According to the reports, Dowden and Netflix exchanged correspondence about the issue.

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