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As researchers around the globe race to develop a coronavirus vaccine, U.S. authorities are warning American firms to exercise extreme caution in safeguarding their research against China and others with a track record of stealing cutting-edge medical technology.

In a televised address to the nation, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced Monday that the country will begin easing its national "non-working period" on Tuesday, according to a report from The Moscow Times.

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Factories in Syria are producing a drug aggressively promoted by President Trump as a possible "game-changer" in the fight against COVID-19, despite a lack of evidence that it can cure the disease.

Three Syrian pharmaceutical companies are producing hydroxychloroquine, as well as the antibiotic azithromycin — and other drugs that are still being tested — to combat the illness, according to the World Health Organization representative in Syria.

In early February, China's ruling Communist Party was facing one of its biggest political crises in more than three decades. A rapidly spreading outbreak of the new coronavirus was a "massive risk and challenge" to social stability, Chinese President Xi Jinping warned top party officials in an internal speech that was later published publicly.

Wuhan is reporting a small new cluster of COVID-19 cases, more than a month after lockdown restrictions were eased in the city that was the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. Wuhan now has at least six new COVID-19 cases, the first to be confirmed in Hubei province in at least 35 days.

"An 89-year-old Wuhan man tested positive for COVID-19 this week," NPR's Emily Feng reports from Beijing, adding that the man's wife and several other people who lived in the same residential community also tested positive — although they had displayed no clinical symptoms of the disease.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson outlined plans Sunday for a phased reopening of Britain's economy, citing decreasing coronavirus hospitalizations and deaths, and asked anyone who cannot perform their jobs from home, such as construction and factory workers, to return to work.

"There are millions of people who are both fearful of this terrible disease, and at the same time also fearful of what this long period of enforced inactivity will do to their livelihoods and their mental and physical well-being," Johnson said. "To their futures and the futures of their children."

The games some people have been playing on social media — choosing who they'd want to be quarantined with — have become real life in Belgium.

Under strict lockdown since March 16, including home confinement except for essential journeys, Belgium's controls have been some of the tightest in Europe. But it's worked — after hitting one of the highest death rates in the world, the nation's infection rate and death toll have dropped steadily since a peak in early April.

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Airlines and airport operators in the United Kingdom are not waiting for the government to publicly confirm their fears. Already, the groups representing major players in the U.K.'s air travel industry are pushing back on a proposal that would require travelers to quarantine after arriving from outside the country.

A spokesperson for Airlines UK — a trade body with British Airways, easyJet and Ryanair as members — says that the group understands from government officials that plans for a quarantine are in the works, but that details remain scarce at the moment.

Primary schools in France are reopening next week.

There will, of course, be social distancing measures in place. Class sizes will be limited to 15 and no games at recess. It's a gradual three-week process beginning with preschoolers.

The government says the reopening is voluntary and students won't be forced to return.

Updated at 5:02 p.m. ET

It was supposed to be a day of parades, a vast party that would transcend borders and bring generations together, not unlike the spontaneous euphoria that swept through victorious European allies when Nazi Germany finally surrendered.

But instead of a mega-event, leaders in London, Paris, Moscow and other capitals, observed the 75th anniversary of V-E Day at a diminished level Friday due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Being in lockdown in Paris during the coronavirus pandemic turned out to be the perfect time and place to devour Bill Buford's new book Dirt.

Dirt: Adventures in Lyon as a Chef in Training, Father, and Sleuth Looking for the Secret of French Cooking was just the antidote to confining apartment walls and the daily tedium of my own pedestrian meals.

I've lived in Paris for 16 years and I've never read Buford. So I first feared Dirt might be yet another expat tale of moving to France en famille, with all its tedious clichés.

With the coronavirus forcing much of Europe to tone down public celebrations this week marking the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, the small nation of Belarus is raising eyebrows — and concerns — by going ahead with a mass military parade in the capital Minsk on Saturday.

The move reflects the business-as-usual approach of the country's longtime president, Alexander Lukashenko — a former Soviet collective farm director leading what the U.S. once dubbed the last dictatorship in Europe.

It took only minutes for Shanghai Disneyland to run out of tickets to Monday's reopening as people jumped at a chance to visit the amusement park for the first time since the COVID-19 outbreak forced it to close in late January. Visitors to the theme park will be required to wear face masks at all times unless they are eating.

Shanghai Disneyland said it's taking "a deliberate approach" as it reopens. It will require physical distancing and sharply reduce capacity; some crowd-oriented features, such as children's play areas and theater shows, will remain shut down.

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This country's top uniformed military officer is wrestling with a special problem of the pandemic. The military has to protect its people, but unlike schools and businesses, it can never shut down.

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The European Union's attempt to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the bloc's diplomatic relationship with China fell flat after an opinion piece co-authored by the EU's 27 ambassadors ran afoul of Beijing's censors.

The piece published in Wednesday's China Daily was notably different from the one posted on the EU embassy's website. The version on the website included a sentence that made reference to the origins of the coronavirus outbreak, which is believed to have started in the Chinese city of Wuhan late last year.

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The United Nations is calling on members to contribute more to a global plan to fight the effects of coronavirus in "fragile countries."

As part of its Global Humanitarian Response Plan, the U.N. is requesting $6.7 billion in aid — more than tripling the $2 billion it requested in late March. Most of the countries that would receive the aid are located in Africa, the Middle East, Latin America. In total, the aid would reach 63 countries.

What happens to a popular travel destination when visitors suddenly stop coming? In Jordan's ancient city of Petra, it makes way for the cats, dogs, birds and other creatures to take over.

Normally, the city teems with Bedouin guides and their animals — camels, horses and donkeys — bringing some of the thousands of tourists a day to the site's tombs and temples carved out of colorful rock more than 2,000 years ago.

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