While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, June 29

People prepare to go tubing on Salt River in Arizona, on June 27, 2020. PHOTO: REUTERS

California orders some bars to close as US posts record Covid-19 cases

California on Sunday ordered some bars to close as that state and a dozen others face the worst surge in coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic.

Governor Gavin Newsom's order for bars to close in seven counties, including Los Angeles, is the first major rollback of efforts to reopen the economy in the most populous US state.

On Friday, Texas and Florida ordered all bars to close.

The surge in Covid-19 cases has been most pronounced in several Southern and Western states that did not follow health officials' recommendations to wait for a steady decline in cases before reopening their economies.


UK's top senior civil servant Mark Sedwill steps down as PM Johnson adviser seeks change

Britain's most senior civil servant stepped down on Sunday after reports of clashes with Prime Minister Boris Johnson's top political adviser, part of what is expected to be a wider shake up of officials at the heart of power.

Johnson's senior political adviser, Dominic Cummings, has long been critical of the civil service, saying government is not nimble enough to deliver change. Some newspapers reported he warned aides last week that a "hard rain is going to fall".

Earlier this year, Johnson forced the resignation of his finance minister, tightening his control over the treasury, and just earlier this month he announced the merger of its diplomatic and aid departments.


French President Macron takes drubbing in local elections, Greens surge

French President Emmanuel Macron's centrist party faced a drubbing on Sunday in municipal elections, while the Greens surged into power in several big cities.

In a rare bright spot for Macron, his prime minister, Edouard Philippe, won his bid to become mayor of the northern port city of Le Havre.

That could lead to a government reshuffle, although the French constitution allows Philippe to name someone else to act as mayor while he remains prime minister.


At least 12 Filipinos missing in boat collision: Media

At least 12 Filipinos were missing early Monday after a collision between their fishing boat and a foreign cargo vessel, media reports in the Philippines said.

The incident occurred Sunday off the northwest coast of the Philippines province of Occidental Mindoro, the Inquirer.net and Rappler news websites reported.

Both cited the Philippine Coast Guard, but the Inquirer reported 12 disappeared while Rappler said the missing included 12 crew plus two other employees of their company.


China's Luckin Coffee to delist from Nasdaq

Luckin Coffee, a Starbucks rival in China, said Saturday it will delist from the Nasdaq following a massive fraud scandal that sent its share price plummeting.

The chain fired its chief executive Jenny Zhiya Qian and chief operating officer Liu Jian in May after an internal investigation into fabricated transactions.

Liu has been accused of faking 2.2 billion yuan (US$310 million) worth of sales in 2019, the company revealed in April, sending its shares into freefall.


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