A number of people around the president have tested positive, including First Lady Melania Trump. Many of them attended a crowded White House event last weekend on the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett as a Supreme Court judge. It is being investigated as a possible “super-spreader event”.
According to US media, the latest positive test has been for Nicholas Luna, a close personal assistant to the president.
The president’s positive Covid-19 diagnosis, which he made public in a tweet early on Friday, has upended his election campaign. He faces Democratic challenger Joe Biden on 3 November.
What did Trump say in his video from hospital?
In the four-minute message posted late on Saturday, Mr Trump, dressed in a suit jacket and shirt with no tie, thanked the doctors and nurses at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center close to Washington DC, where he is being treated.
“I came here, wasn’t feeling so well, I’m much better now,” he said, later adding: “Over the next period of a few days I guess that’s the real test. We’ll be seeing what happens over those next couple of days.”
He said he wanted to get back on the campaign trail.
“I’ll be back. I think I’ll be back soon. I look forward to finishing up the campaign the way it was started,” he said.
“We’re going to beat this coronavirus or whatever you want to call it. And we’re going to beat it soundly.”
What do we know about his condition?
A series of statements on Saturday painted a confusing picture, but the latest update from Mr Trump’s physician, Dr Sean Conley, says “while not yet out of the woods, the team remains cautiously optimistic” about the president’s condition.
He could not give a timetable for discharge.
In an earlier update on Saturday morning given outside Walter Reed hospital, Dr Conley had said the president was not being given extra oxygen and had been fever-free for 24 hours.
But comments from Mark Meadows to journalists given after that news conference painted a much more downbeat picture.
“The president’s vitals over the last 24 hours were very concerning and the next 48 hours will be critical in terms of his care,” he said, adding: “We’re still not on a clear path to a full recovery.”
The comments reportedly angered Mr Trump and Mr Meadows later tried to clarify his statement on Fox News, saying the president had “made unbelievable improvements from yesterday (Friday) morning, when I know a number of us, the doctor and I, were very concerned”.
He said Mr Trump “had a fever and his blood oxygen level had dropped rapidly”, although there was “never even a risk of a transition of power”.
Sources have told US media that Mr Trump did receive supplemental oxygen at the White House.
At Saturday’s morning news conference, Dr Conley had refused to say whether the president had ever been on oxygen despite being repeatedly questioned. “None at this moment and yesterday with the team, while we were all here, he was not on oxygen,” he said.
Dr Conley later said he “misspoke” when appearing to suggest Mr Trump had been diagnosed with Covid-19 as early as Wednesday.
The president, being 74, a man and someone categorised as obese, is in a higher-risk category for Covid-19. He has so far been treated with an experimental drug cocktail injection and two doses of antiviral medication remdesivir.
Mr Trump’s team said he spent most of the afternoon “conducting business and moving about the medical suite without difficulty”.
First Lady Melania Trump, who also tested positive for Covid-19, is said to be doing well, and continues to rest at the White House.
Who else around the president has tested positive?
Aside from the president and the first lady, at least six other people who attended the Rose Garden event for Amy Coney Barrett are now confirmed to have the virus.
On Saturday, campaign adviser and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie became the latest attendee to report a positive result.
Other people to have tested positive around Mr Trump include close aide Hope Hicks – believed to be the first to show symptoms – campaign manager Bill Stepien and former White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway.
Nicholas Luna, the latest person reported to have tested positive, is a personal assistant or “body man” of the president. He is in constant contact with Mr Trump, handling his papers.
What about the political situation?
Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate would postpone its work in full session until 19 October, but that work at the Judiciary Committee – which will examine Judge Barrett’s nomination – would continue.
Two senators who have tested positive sit on the committee.
Mr Trump remains in charge. Vice-President Mike Pence, to whom under the constitution the president would transfer power temporarily should he become too ill to carry out his duties, has tested negative.
The president’s campaign team said on Saturday it would move forward “at full speed” until Mr Trump could return to the campaign trail.
It is calling on top “surrogates”, including Mr Trump’s sons Donald Jr and Eric, and Vice-President Mike Pence to “carry the campaign forward” for the time being.
Dubbed “Operation Maga”, a campaign spokesperson told Fox News the first event will be a virtual rally on Monday.
Mr Pence is scheduled to debate Democratic vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris on Wednesday.
Joe Biden has continued his campaign, although he has taken down negative advertising about the president, and held a virtual event on Saturday.
He said on a Michigan trip: “I don’t want to be attacking the president and the first lady now.”
But he added that the president’s response to the pandemic had been “unconscionable”.
“I find this one of the most despicable things that I’ve encountered in my whole career,” he said.
Poland’s biggest protests in decades stand against abortion ban
Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski said more than 100,000 people were in attendance, while protest organizers put the figure at 150,000.
Police detained 37 people Friday evening, the vast majority of whom were football hooligans, Sylwester Marczak, spokesman for the Warsaw Police headquarters, said Saturday morning. Taking into account the huge number of participants, it was a “very peaceful” protest, he added.
Demonstrations of this scale were last seen in the Solidarity movement of the 1980s in Poland which led to the collapse of the government, analysts say.
The protest in Warsaw was the culmination of nine days of nationwide protests since a court ruling on October 22 deemed abortion due to fetal defects to be unconstitutional. This meant abortion in Poland would only be legal in two scenarios — if the pregnancy threatened the mother’s life and health, or if a woman became pregnant following rape or incest.
Demonstrators also turned out in Gdańsk, Białystok, Poznan, Kraków, Wroclaw, Torun, Sczescin, Myślenice, Gorlice and Jasło on Friday.
According to local media, 430,000 people attended more than 400 demonstrations across the country against the ban on Wednesday. Online supporters are using the tag #ThisIsWar to show solidarity with those marching.
The protests have been taking place in defiance of a ban on gatherings of more than five people due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Aerial footage of the demonstration in Warsaw posted to social media showed the vast scale of the turnout there on Friday evening.
Protest organizers urged protesters to make their way towards the residence of Jaroslaw Kaczyński, the leader of the ruling right-wing Law and Justice Party Leader (PiS) who is widely seen as the de facto decision maker in Poland. The demonstration ended there at around 11 p.m. local time and organizers urged protesters to make their way home safely.
Kaczyński on Wednesday called the protesters “criminals” and said people taking part in mass gatherings were endangering people’s lives given the surge in coronavirus cases in Poland.
In an apparent softening of his stance, Polish President Andrzej Duda on Friday submitted a draft amendment to the controversial law which would legalize abortion in situations where the baby has “lethal defects” and would die soon after birth.
The amendment would mean abortion would remain legal in an event where “prenatal tests or other medical indications indicate a high probability that the child will be born still or burdened with an incurable disease or defect that will lead to the death of the child inevitably and directly,” according to a statement from Duda on Friday.
“It is an extremely delicate and painful situation for every mother, for every parent. In the case of lethal defects, the death of the child is inevitable. The protection of his life is therefore beyond human power,” the statement also said.
Duda had earlier clarified his stance on abortion in such cases in an interview with Polish radio station RMF FM. “You must clearly ask yourself whether anyone has the right to demand, or the law may require such a woman to… bear such a child in her womb and then bear the entire physical cost of birth,” Duda said.
Duda added that he did not think abortion should be legal in situations where a child has Down syndrome, for example, and the life of the unborn child is not at risk.
The ruling by Poland’s Constitutional Tribunal removed one of the few remaining grounds for legal termination in the country, which already had some of the strictest abortion laws in Europe.
Abortions due to fetal defects comprised approximately 98% of all legal abortions carried out in Poland in 2019, according to data from the Polish Ministry of Health.
Asked about the ongoing protests across Poland over the controversial court ruling, Duda condemned the demonstrators who disrupted church services earlier this week.
“If we are talking about acts of physical or verbal aggression, if we are talking about invading churches, if we are talking about insulting religious feelings, profaning places of worship, I am sorry, but the boundaries are definitely exceeded here,” he said.
Abortion rights protest leaders have accused the populist PiS party of pushing the court to tighten abortion restrictions in order to please the party’s base, and the Church. Church leaders have denied influencing the change in law.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki on Friday urged protesters not to go out on the streets as he announced further steps to try to limit the spread of Covid-19.
“I understand your anger, but I urge you to stay at home, especially for the sake of seniors,” he said.
The measures include closing cemeteries for three days, urging business owners to allow employees to work from home and urging older citizens to remain at home.
Health Minister Adam Niedzielski told Polish news channel TVN24 on Friday that he looked with “great concern” at the protests and urged people to isolate themselves from those taking part, saying they could be more exposed to Covid-19.
On Friday, Poland recorded 21,629 new coronavirus cases, marking another record high in the country, where case counts have tripled in less than a month. A further 202 deaths were also reported by the Polish Health Ministry, with the total number of confirmed infections in the country surpassing 340,000.
Greece is the latest country to announce a partial lockdown, with restaurants and other leisure activities closed in major Greek cities from Tuesday. “We must act now, before intensive care units buckle under the strain of lives in danger,” Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Saturday. Greece has not seen as many cases as other parts of Europe, but there has been a steady increase since early October
Philippines typhoon: Evacuation ordered as Goni, the world’s strongest storm of 2020, approaches
Typhoon Goni — known locally as Rolly — is a category 5 storm with 215 kilometers per hour (133 miles per hour) sustained winds and gusts of up to 265 kph (164 mph). It will make landfall on Sunday as the strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines since Haiyan killed more than 6,300 people in November 2013.
Pre-emptive evacuations have started in coastal and landslide-prone communities in the provinces of Camarines Norte and Camarines Sur, while the Albay provincial government will order residents in risky areas to leave their homes, Gremil Naz, a local disaster official, told DZBB radio station.
Earlier this week, Typhoon Molave killed 22 people in the Philippines — mostly through drowning in provinces south of the capital Manila, which is also in the projected path of Goni.
Authorities are facing another hurdle as social distancing needs to be imposed in evacuation centers to prevent the spread of coronavirus. The Philippines has the second-highest number of Covid-19 infections and deaths in Southeast Asia, behind only Indonesia.
Relief goods, heavy machinery and personal protective equipment are already positioned in key areas, Filipino Grace America, mayor of Infanta town in Quezon province, told DZBB radio. “But because of the Covid-19 pandemic, our funds for calamity concerns and expenses are insufficient,” she said.
Local officials canceled port operations and barred fishers from setting sail.
Typhoon Goni, moving westward at 20 kph (12 mph) from the Pacific Ocean, will bring intense rains over the capital and 14 provinces nearby on Saturday evening, and threats of floods and landslides.
Another typhoon, Atsani, is gaining strength just outside the Philippines. Around 20 typhoons hit the Philippines every year.