Global

An outbreak on Greece’s Lesvos Island, The Taj Mahal reopens, and pubs are closing early in England.

A look at how COVID-19 is impacting life around the world.

by Stranger’s Guide
Greece

243 people at a camp for refugees and migrants on Lesvos island have tested positive for coronavirus. The Kara Tepe camp, is on a former military firing range and currently accommodates 9,200 people. Kara Tepe is the overflow site for Moria Refugee Camp, Europe’s biggest. On September 8th a fire broke out at Moria Camp following clashes after a number of refugees who tested positive refused to isolate with their families. (Greek City Times)

India

After being closed to tourists for around six months, India’s famous landmark—and one of the seven wonders of the world—the Taj Mahal has reopened. It closed March 17th as part of India’s effort to stymie the spread of coronavirus by closing all heritage monuments across the country. Temperature checks are in place and sanitizer at entry points. Group photographs are discouraged and the site is limited to five thousand visitors a day. Before the pandemic up to 70,000 people visited the Taj Mahal daily. (Times of India)

United Kingdom

All pubs, bars and restaurants in England are restricted to table service only and must close at 10pm in the latest effort by the British government to curb COVID-19. Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove also said people should work from home if possible. These new restrictions come as the UK’s coronavirus alert level was moved to 4, meaning transmission is “high or rising exponentially.” (BBC)

Madrid

Madrid’s famous Teatro Real opera house was forced to cancel a performance of Verdi’s opera Un ballo in maschera after audience members protested the lack of social-distancing measures on Sunday. One spectator told El Pais newspaper that up to 15 people were seated side by side in the upper gallery with no space between them. Teatro Real, insists that capacity was at 51.5%. (El Pais)

Australia

Australia looks set to record its lowest daily coronavirus increase in three months. The state of Victoria, which became the epicenter of the country’s outbreak of COVID-19, recorded 11 new cases of COVID-19 in 24 hours, the lowest daily tally in months. The Victoria state premier Daniel Andres declared the result a “cause for great optimism and positivity right across metropolitan Melbourne … proof positive beyond any question that this strategy is working.” (The Border Mail)

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Asia

“Goat Grabbing”

It’s been around for more than 600 years, is played on horseback, and can get pretty dangerous to play and even watch. Welcome to Buzkashi, Afghanistan’s national sport. It’s a bit like polo, but with a headless goat instead of a ball. The point of the game is for your team to take control of the carcass and drag it to the hole on the other side of the pitch. It’s been passed down through the generations (it was originally the sport of rich warlords), and is so popular that Afghans want to see it become an Olympic sport.