Mexico to enter community transmission stage in 15 days

Deputy Health Minister Hugo López-Gatell informed that within 15 days - by late March - Mexico could enter the second stage, community transmission, with which there could be hundreds of COVID-19 coronavirus cases which would need different control measures.
López-Gatell asserted that for now, Mexico remains on stage one, with few imported cases; nevertheless, international airports receiving flights from China or from the 10 countries with active COVID-19 transmission will experience intensified screening through the monitoring of passengers’ temperature and other symptoms.

The second stage, however, would present hundreds of cases and need different control measures.


COVID-19 Coronavirus Outbreak

Mexico’s low, barely budging count of confirmed #coronavirus cases is raising concern about the adequacy of testing in the country and whether the government is doing enough to prepare for an epidemic. As of Tuesday, only eight cases of Covid-19 had been confirmed since the first was reported Feb. 28 and Mexico was monitoring 37 possible cases.
By comparison, Brazil, where the first case was confirmed two days before Mexico’s, confirmed 37 cases and suspected another 876. On Wednesday evening, Mexico’s Health Ministry said the number of confirmed cases had reached 12. Yesterday, the outbreak was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, as worldwide cases topped 120,000 and deaths exceeded 4,300. Countries still have a chance to alter the course of the pandemic, the WHO said, urging governments to step up containment efforts through testing, tracing and isolating.

As of Tuesday night, the Mexican Health Ministry said it had performed 278 tests. “I’m worried about the lack of diagnostic testing,” said Francisco Moreno, infectious disease specialist and head of Internal Medicine at ABC Hospital in Mexico City. “If Mexico has undetected cases circulating, the spread of the disease is going to be brutal.”


Etiquetado Claros

There are 31 different types of labels worldwide telling customers how much fat, salt and sugar there is in the food they buy, according to a 2019 BMJ study. There is plenty of other research evaluating which labels, including “traffic lights”, different colored nutrition tags and “healthy choice” ticks, are most effective at combating obesity. How to measure the food labels effectiveness: the Squeal Index! The greater the food companies’ fury about a new type of labeling, the better it probably is. By this standard, Mexico and Chile are on to a winner.

Last week, the Financial Times reported that Mexican shoppers would soon see large black labels on their food and beverages warning if they contained “too much sugar”, “too much fat” or “too many calories”. Some foods, such as crisps and biscuits, would carry all three labels. Mexico is following Chile whose black labels seem to have delivered results, including a 25 per cent fall in sugary drinks sales over the past year.


49 journalists were killed 2019

A total of 49 journalists were killed this year, 389 are currently in prison and 57 are being held hostage, according to the annual worldwide round-up of deadly violence and abusive treatment against journalists, released today by Reporters Without Borders (RSF). In its annual review, the Paris-based group found that the number of journalists killed in 2019 was the lowest since 2003, representing a "historically low" figure compared with an average of 80 journalists killed per year over the past two decades.

Some 63% of journalists killed worldwide were murdered or deliberately targeted, Reporters Without Borders added. In Mexico, 10 journalists were killed in 2019 - the same as in 2018. With at least 14 journalists killed in Latin America overall this year, the group noted that the region was now as deadly for reporters as the Middle East. In its report, Reporters Without Borders noted that a further eight journalists had been murdered in Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Honduras, Colombia and Haiti, but they had yet to be added to the annual roundup pending verification.


Genaro García Luna, former public security secretary

For some Mexicans, the news of Mr. García Luna’s arrest was almost unimaginable. For others, it was proof of enduring suspicions that he had been in bed with criminals all along. Still others interpreted it as a sweeping - and scalding - referendum on the two administrations in which he served.
Then there were those who found confirmation that the whole apparatus of Mexico’s government was once and forever corrupt.
Mr. García Luna was one of the architects - and the embodiment - of Mexico’s security strategy for a decade. From 2001 to 2005, during the administration of President Vicente Fox, Mr. García Luna led the Federal Investigative Agency, Mexico’s equivalent of the F.B.I.

He then became the public safety secretary in the cabinet of President Felipe Calderón from 2006 to 2012, overseeing his boss’s “war” on drug trafficking organizations and the deployment of the Mexican military to wage it.


Tropical Storm Lorena

At midnight the center of Tropical Storm Lorena was located near latitude 15.6 North, longitude 102.6 West. Lorena is moving toward the northwest near 15 mph (24 km/h). Tropical Cyclone LORENA-19 can have a low humanitarian impact based on the maximum sustained wind speed, exposed population and vulnerability.There has been little change in the cloud structure of Lorena since the last advisory, with the storm having a central convective feature and a ragged band in the western semicircle. A recently received WindSat overpass indicates the low-level center is located near the northwestern edge of the central convection.

Maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph (85 km/h) with higher gusts. Gradual strengthening is forecast during the next couple of days as Lorena approaches the coast of Mexico.


4 avocado trucks stolen every day

Up to four trucks carrying avocados are stolen every day in the violent Mexican state of Michoacán. Mexico’s president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, took office six months ago promising a new strategy to fight crime, but violence has continued unabated across the country. “There are at least 20 illegal armed groups violently competing for territories and markets in the state.

Yet not a single actor has been able to establish dominion over the others. This means war has become perpetual and extremely costly” for the criminal groups, Ernst - senior analyst Mexico for the International Crisis Group - said.