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$200 Fine For Not Wearing A Mask In Melbourne

The Deciport Daily Quick-Look: 20 July 2020

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FILE PHOTO: Victoria Police officers meet outside a public housing tower, locked down in response to an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Melbourne, Australia, July 8, 2020. REUTERS/Sandra Sanders

Masks in the Australian state of Victoria soon to be compulsory.

Security (Health) // BLUF: It will soon be compulsory to wear a mask when leaving the house in the Australian state of Victoria.

The new measure is enforceable by a $200 AUD fine.

Victoria is known for handing down heavy-handed fines to residents who break its rules around COVID-19 risk mitigation measures, upwards of near $1600 AUD in some cases.

Victoria has seen significant spikes in COVID-19 numbers recently, prompting a second lock down, the locking in of residents at several apartment blocks; and door-to-door testing.

Victorian Premier Dan Andrews had stated at a press conference that masks didn't need to be 'hospital grade' and could be a scarf or bit of cloth (see: https://bit.ly/2ZJeFG3).

The rule comes into effect at 11:59 pm on 22 July 2020.

(See Point 6 Below for Further Information)

The Daily Quick-Look for 20 July 2020

The Deciport Daily Quick-Look is your at-a-glance look at several key events and situations around the world over the last 24 hours. Each headline contains the link to its source report.

BLUF = Bottom Line Up Front.

FYSA = For Your Situational Awareness.

1. UNITED KINGDOM - Political: UK accuses China of 'gross' human rights abuses against Uighurs

FYSA: UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has accused China of "gross and egregious" human rights abuses against its Uighur population and said sanctions against those responsible cannot be ruled out. Reports of forced sterilisation and wider persecution of the Muslim group were "reminiscent of something not seen for a long time", he told the BBC. The UK would work with its allies to take appropriate action, he insisted. China's UK ambassador said talk of concentration camps was "fake". Liu Xiaoming told the BBC's Andrew Marr that the Uighurs received the same treatment under the law as other ethnic groups in his country. Shown drone footage that appears to show Uighurs being blindfolded and led to trains, and which has been authenticated by Australian security services, he said he "did not know" what the video was showing and "sometimes you have a transfer of prisoners, in any country". "There is no such concentration camps in Xinjiang," he added. There's a lot of fake accusations against China."(BBC. See link in heading for further reading)

2. TURKEY - Security (Health, Travel): Turkey suspends Iran and Afghanistan flights

FYSA: Turkey on Sunday suspended flights from Iran and Afghanistan in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, according to the Transport and Infrastructure Ministry. “Flights to Iran and Afghanistan from Turkey have been suspended by our government as part of preventive measures against coronavirus,” said the ministry in a statement. (Andalou Agency. See link in heading for further reading)

3. IRAN - Political: Iran suspends execution of three men linked to protests, lawyer says

FYSA: The Iranian judiciary has suspended the executions of three men linked to anti-government protests in November, one of their attorneys, Babak Paknia, said on Sunday. Rights activists had said the death sentences were aimed at intimidating future protesters. With hardship mounting because of U.S. sanctions and the coronavirus pandemic, Iran’s clerical rulers have been trying to prevent a revival of anti-government protests that took place in November last year, when hundreds are believed to have been killed in the worst street violence since the 1979 revolution. (Reuters. See link in heading for further reading)

4. CHINA - Political: China says it will respond resolutely if UK sanctions officials

FYSA: China will respond resolutely to any attempt by Britain to sanction Chinese officials following the imposition of a security law in Hong Kong, its ambassador in London said on Sunday. Earlier this month Britain introduced a new sanctions regime to target individuals it says are involved in human rights abuses or organised crime. Some lawmakers in Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party have said the sanctions should be used to target Chinese officials. “If UK government goes that far to impose sanctions on any individual in China, China will certainly make a resolute response to it,” Liu Xiaoming told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show. (Reuters. See link in heading for further reading)

5. HONG KONG - Security (Health): Coronavirus: Hong Kong reports biggest one-day rise in cases

FYSA: Hong Kong has recorded its highest one-day increase in cases since the pandemic began, the territory's Chief Executive Carrie Lam has said. At a Sunday press conference, Ms Lam said there had been more than 100 new infections, and announced new restrictions to contain the spread. She described the situation as "really critical" and said there was "no sign" it was coming under control. Non-essential civil servants must work from home and testing will increase. The chief executive promised that authorities would carry out 10,000 tests a day, and also made wearing face masks compulsory in indoor public spaces. Face coverings were already mandatory on public transport. There were 108 new cases, 83 of them local and 25 imported, the health authorities said. The announcement comes days after Hong Kong Disneyland shut again, less than a month after reopening, as the government brought back social distancing measures. (BBC. See link in heading for further reading)

6. AUSTRALIA - Security (Health): Australia's Victoria requires masks for Melbourne hit by COVID-19

FYSA: People in Melbourne must now wear masks when leaving their homes as Victoria, Australia’s second most-populous state, marked two weeks of triple-digit increases in new coronavirus infections on Sunday. Melbournians not wearing face coverings will be fined A$200 ($140), said Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews. Victoria, which has forced nearly 5 million people into a partial six-week lockdown on July 9, reported 363 new cases of the coronavirus on Sunday, after 217 cases the previous day. “We’re going to be wearing masks in Victoria and potentially in other parts of the country for a very long time,” Andrews told a televised briefing. (Reuters. See link in heading for further reading)

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