(Reuters) – Here’s what you need to know about the coronavirus right now:
When coronavirus and protests collide
Australian authorities are taking legal action to try to stop a Black Lives Matter protest scheduled for Saturday in Sydney, citing the risk of an outbreak of COVID-19 given the thousands expected to attend.
French police have also banned a demonstration planned for Saturday in front of the U.S. Embassy in Paris because of what they said were risks of social disorder and health dangers from large gatherings.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Robert Redfield have urged participants in protests sweeping the United States to get tested for the coronavirus.
Demonstrations are planned in several cities around the world this weekend.
Hydroxychloroquine or not?
An influential study that found hydroxychloroquine increased the risk of death in COVID-19 patients has been withdrawn a week after it led to major trials being halted, adding to confusion about a malaria drug championed by U.S. President Donald Trump.
The Lancet medical journal pulled the study after three of its authors retracted it, citing concerns about the quality and veracity of data.
The World Health Organization will resume its hydroxychloroquine trials after pausing them in the wake of the study. Dozens of other trials have resumed or are in process.
Surging cases in Brazil, Mexico and India
The number of coronavirus deaths in Brazil has blown past Italy’s toll, while Mexico reported a record number of new cases, as Latin American leaders push to end quarantine measures and kick their economies back into gear.
Latin America as a whole has become a new focus of the pandemic, with health officials urging governments not to open their economies too fast and to avoid public crowds.
India’s coronavirus infections are meanwhile rising at the fastest daily rate than at any time in the past three months, but it plans to open shopping malls, restaurants and places of worship next week.
More drinkers cut than increase alcohol
People missing out on drinking in restaurants and bars during lockdowns are not entirely making up for it by pouring more at home, a survey of nine countries conducted on behalf of beer, wine and spirits companies showed.
The International Alliance for Responsible Drinking, made up of 12 major alcoholic beverage companies, said its survey of 11,000 people found that 30% were drinking less than before, and only 11% were drinking more.
(Compiled by Karishma Singh and Nick Tattersall)