Top headlines: UAE's latest visa decision explained; Emirates announces 10 daily repatriation flights to India; first UAE-China digital expo to kick off
Here are some of the stories that made the headlines over the last 24 hours.
Latest UAE visa decision, fines explained: Your top questions answered
The UAE Cabinet on Friday issued a decision that cancels all recently issued resolutions about the validity of residency visas from today, July 11.
These include the residency extension previously granted to expatriates, who are within and outside the country, and whose visas expired between March 1 and 31, 2020. However, grace periods have been given to complete renewal procedures. Entry permits and ID cards that have also expired will now be considered invalid.
Emirates announces 10 daily repatriation flights to five Indian cities
Several repatriation flights have been scheduled by Dubai-based Emirates airline to assist stranded Indians in the UAE after receiving the green light from the civil aviation authorities in India and the UAE.
Repatriation flights to five Indian cities - Bengaluru, Delhi, Kochi, Mumbai and Thiruvananthapuram - are on track from July 12 to 26. The flights to Bengaluru and Mumbai are subject to state government approval.
UAE leaders meet to discuss successful handling of coronavirus crisis
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has met with His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
The meeting tackled a number of issues related to the UAE's development and the country's aim to enhance its stature and boost its gains in light of the wise leadership of the President, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
UAE amends visa, ID card rules; ICA to start collecting service fees and fines
The UAE Cabinet on Friday issued a number of amendments to the decisions issued recently in the identity and nationality sector.
With the return of normalcy in various fields and sectors and in support of the business continuity, the amendments have been issued, as per an official statement from the UAE cabinet.
"All the decisions related to the residency of expatriates, visas, entry permits and ID cards are stopped with effect from July 11, while the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA) has been assigned to start collecting the fees due for providing the services from July 12," a series of tweets on the official handle of the UAE Government said.
Want to travel from India to UAE? Here is the list of available flights
India's national carrier Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express have released the list of flights from major cities to the UAE.
On Thursday, India's Ministry of Civil Aviation announced that the UAE residents currently stuck in India can fly back to the emirates on chartered flights organised by the UAE carriers as well as the Indian government's Vande Bharat Mission flights for a period of 15 days starting July 12.
Soon, ride a driverless bus in Dubai as global startup begins trials
Soon, you may be able to ride a bus without a driver in Dubai. GACHA, the world's first self-driving robotbus that can handle all weather conditions, will be piloted in the emirate's Sustainable City, authorities announced on Saturday.
An invention by start-up Sensible 4 from Finland, GACHA was one of the two international projects that were selected in the Cohort 7 global start-up programme of Dubai Future Accelerators (DFA), an initiative of Dubai Future Foundation (DFF), in partnership with the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA).
First UAE-China digital expo kicks off on July 15
The first edition of the China-UAE Economic and Trade Digital Expo will be held jointly by the UAE Ministry of Economy and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) from July 15 to 21.
The week-long event organised by Hala China, an initiative by Dubai Holding, and the China International Exhibition Centre Group Corporation (CIEC), will reinvigorate trade activities between the two countries in the new digital economy.
Coronavirus: Emirates' Clark says airline to cut 10-20% jobs
The President of Dubai's flagship carrier Emirates airline says that the airline will have shrunk its workforce by between 10 and 20 per cent by the end of it and that it was burning up to $1 million cash an hour at the worst of the Covid-led global restrictions that saw a sudden and exhaustive freeze in air travel across almost all regions of the world.
Clark made these comments in an interview with CNN's Richard Quest for the Quest Means Business programme. Operationally, said Clark, the airline will be back at the pre-Covid levels (end-2019 levels) by the summer of 2022.
Abu Dhabi Labour Court hands over 26,800 workers' dues worth Dh170m
Financial dues worth Dh170 million were handed out by the Abu Dhabi Labour Court to 26,800 workers at their accommodation. The move was in line with the distance work and business continuity plan and as part of the precautionary measures to maintain public health and safety.
Workers who do not have bank accounts are ensured their financial dues in accordance with the judicial rulings issued to them with the new mechanism. They do not have to approach the court's headquarters, as it is delivered through Emirates Post.
Pakistan rolls out guidelines for Eid Al Adha to curb coronavirus spread
Pakistan has rolled out guidelines for the upcoming Eid Al Adha festival to curb the spread of Covid-19, an official said.
Muhammad Salman, a public health official at the National Institute of Health, told Xinhua news agency that the objective is to provide health guidelines to the general public, buyers and sellers of sacrificial animals regarding precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the infection during the festival.
Floods, landslides kill 23 in Nepal, dozens missing
Heavy rains triggered flash floods and landslides that killed at least 23 people and displaced thousands in western Nepal, officials said on Saturday.
Nine people were killed and more than 30 were missing in Myagdi district, 200 km (125 miles) northwest of the capital Kathmandu, where several houses were destroyed on Friday, district administrator Gyan Nath Dhakal said.
First prayers in Hagia Sophia on July 24: Erdogan
The first prayers at Istanbul's Hagia Sophia, a 1,500 year old Unesco World Heritage site which has now been converted into a mosque, will take place on July 24, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.
"We plan to open the Hagia Sophia to worshipping on July 24 with Friday prayers," Xinhua news agency quoted Erdogan as saying while addressing the nation on Friday.
"Like all our mosques, the doors of Hagia Sophia will be wide open to locals and foreigners, Muslims and non-Muslims," he added.
Brazil surpasses 70,000 coronavirus deaths: official
Brazil surpassed 70,000 coronavirus deaths on Friday, the health ministry said, though the number of daily fatalities appears to be stabilising.
The ministry said there had been 45,000 new infections and 1,200 deaths over the last 24 hours, taking the totals to 1.8 million cases and 70,400 deaths.
Brazil, a country of 212 million, is the second worst-affected country in the world after the United States.
UAE rated GCC region's best in UN's 2020 Online Services Index
The UAE has been ranked first regionally and 8th globally in the UN's 2020 Online Services Index (OSI), according to an e-government survey conducted by the United Nations.
The country was also ranked fourth in Asia in this index and has improved one place in the E-Participation Index as it achieved 16th place, after it was in 17th position in the 2018 index.
UAE government, leaders change Twitter photos to Mars mission logo
The UAE government and its departments, leaders and UAE embassies worldwide have changed their Twitter profile photos to 'Hope Probe 2020, Arabs to Mars' in a stirring show of support for the UAE's historic mission to the Red Planet next week.
The UAE government handle @UAEGov, led the way, with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council, among those following suit.
Coronavirus can still be brought under control: WHO
The World Health Organization said Friday that it is still possible to bring coronavirus outbreaks under control, even though case numbers have more than doubled in the past six weeks.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the examples of Italy, Spain, South Korea and India's biggest slum showed that however bad a outbreak was, the virus could still be reined in through aggressive action.
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