(Reuters) - Japan will hold the Summer Olympics regardless of the situation with the COVID-19 pandemic, Tokyo 2020 President said as the government prepared to extend a state of emergency.
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* Britain begins door-to-door testing of 80,000 people in a bid to stem the spread of a new highly infectious so-called South African variant of coronavirus. [nL8N2K81GE]
* France's vaccines chief said he hoped the AstraZeneca vaccine could be rolled out there by mid-February.
* The European Union tightened its rules for visitors from outside the bloc, specifying that they would only be allowed in freely from countries with very few coronavirus cases and almost none of the more transmissible variants.
* Japan needs to link up private COVID-19 testing with public databases to get a firmer grip on the extent of the pandemic, health experts said.
* Malaysia's government extended a lockdown and broad movement restrictions by two weeks as a surge in infections has pushed the cumulative total past 200,000 cases.
* Johnson & Johnson is seeking Thailand's approval for its COVID-19 vaccine.
* China reported the fewest new COVID-19 cases in a month as imported cases overtook local infections, official data showed on Tuesday, suggesting its worst wave since March 2020 is being stamped out ahead of an important holiday.
* The U.S. government promised undocumented migrants the same access to COVID-19 vaccines as other civilians and said inoculation centres would be immigration enforcement-free zones.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Dubai will start vaccinating people with the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, the state media office said, after receiving its first shipment from India.
* Zimbabwe will have access to a Chinese COVID-19 vaccine soon, China's ambassador in Harare said, as Beijing ramps up its availability to developing nations.
* China's Shenzhen Kangtai Biological Products said it had completed a facility designed to be able to produce 400 million doses of AstraZeneca's vaccine per year, doubling a capacity target promised in 2020.
* EU curbs on exports of coronavirus vaccines could delay Japan's inoculation drive, the minister in charge of the campaign said.
* A team of investigators led by the World Health Organization arrived at an animal health facility in China's Wuhan in the search for clues about the origins of the pandemic.
* Moderna Inc said it is proposing filling vials with additional doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to ease a crunch in manufacturing as the company approaches the manufacturing of almost a million doses a day.
* Chinese syringe makers are warning that they may only be able to fulfil some orders as late as June, while South Korea is considering supporting syringe manufactures to boost production, capacity and exports of special syringes for coronavirus vaccines.
* Global stock markets gained for a second day on Tuesday, spurred by increased optimism about economic stimulus and global recovery, while retail investors retreated from GameStop and their new-found interest in silver.
* In Spain, the number of people registering as jobless rose for the fourth month in a row in January to 3.96 million as restrictions to contain new outbreaks of the pandemic continued to limit activity.
* After meeting with Republican senators at the White House on Monday, U.S. President Joe Biden appeared ready to push forward with his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief plan even if it fails to draw Republican support.
(Compiled by Jagoda Darlak and Ramakrishnan M.; Edited by Angus MacSwan)