Your Friday recap: Israel weighs the fourth dose

We are talking about Israel’s decision on the fourth dose of the Covid vaccine and the disappearance of an outspoken teacher in China.

Israel’s Ministry of Health considered on Thursday approved the fourth dose of Covid vaccine? to try to stop the rapidly spreading Omicron variant after experts recommended it, saying they believe the country must act.

Despite the lack of scientific data, the pandemic response advisors concluded that the potential benefits outweighed the risks, showing signs of impaired immunity several months after the third dose and giving that delaying the booster dose may be too late to protect those people. highest risk.

If the Health Ministry approves the panel’s recommendation, Israel could begin administering the fourth dose as soon as Sunday to at-risk groups: people over 60, immunocompromised persons and care workers health care. The panel did not recommend a fourth dose for the general population. Top officials have backed the move.

“The price will be higher if we don’t vaccinate,” Dr. Boaz Lev, head of the advisory board, said at a news conference late Wednesday. He described the spread of Omicron as “a kind of tsunami or tornado”, “We don’t have much time to make a decision.”

Dissent: Some scientists say it’s too soon. Some members of the panel raised concerns about the fading or depletion of the immunological response in the elderly following repeated vaccinations over a short period of time.

Text definition: Israel is one of the first countries to give its residents a third dose, starting in the summer, and it will be ahead of other countries in getting a fourth dose.

This is the latest updates and map of the pandemic.

In other developments:

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, make harsh criticisms of the West on Thursday because of rising military tensions in Eastern Europe, said that Moscow is not to blame for talking about “war, war, war” because it is merely defending Russia’s historic territories.

He said at his annual year-end news conference that the Biden administration had agreed to hold talks on Moscow’s security concerns starting in January, calling it a positive sign and that he did not significantly escalate tensions. However, he also said that Russia would expect a prompt response to its requests.

“It was the United States that brought their missiles to our doorstep,” he said, referring to NATO’s expansion, adding: “You are asking for assurances from me, but it is the You are the one who has to guarantee us. Right away. Right away.”

Russian diplomats detail their needs on Eastern Europe – including NATO’s written commitment not to expand eastward – in two ultimatums last week. The proposals suggest establishing a Cold War-style security arrangement in Europe based on spheres of influence.

Related: The Pentagon is working on a plan to provide Ukraine with battlefield intelligence Senior US officials say it could help the country respond more quickly to a possible Russian invasion.

Li Tiantian, who teaches at a rural school in Hunan province, disappear after telling friends that police officers broke into her home and put her in a mental hospital.

She told them that authorities had charged her with violating the limit of acceptable official comment on social media. In recent weeks, Li has publicly sympathized with a teacher in Shanghai who was fired for saying that closer study of China’s official death toll was needed for the massacre. Nanjing, the murder of the inhabitants of that city by the Japanese army in 1937.

There have been many public supporters of Li online. It’s unusual that the censors didn’t shut it down, possibly because the central authorities considered the case a messy controversy, best left to the local government to clean up.

Sending government critics to mental hospitals is a longstanding way to stifle and discredit dissidents. Authorities were mostly silent about Li’s disappearance on Sunday, and they did not respond to repeated phone calls from The New York Times.

Asia Pacific

Bros’, the only Michelin-starred restaurant in the southern Italian city of Lecce, has become a global target of haughty food critics after a negative review disparaged the food and its decorative style.

But the viral moment wasn’t all bad for the place and its chef, Our reporter writes.

Each year, The Times Magazine looks back heritage and human life who died that year.

Yes DMX, whose “music boils with aggression and pain Black Men are rarely broadcast in public.” Author Beverly Cleary “Created Ramona Quimby for other mischievous kids.” Norm Macdonald “Become a comedian’s comedian by ignoring the conventions of our confessional age.”

Read The life they lived.

Individual, Joan Didion, who explored the brutal aspects of postwar American life in her articles, and became a tough voice, especially in American fiction, passed away on Thursday in Manhattan. She was 87. Critics Parul Sehgal called her “America’s great diagnostician of disorder.”

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