The government of Kosovo has collapsed after a vote of no confidence in Prime Minister Albin Kurti was backed by a majority of MPs. The vote was brought by a junior coalition partner angered by Mr Kurti’s approach to tackling the coronavirus outbreak. It is not clear how the political impasse will be resolved as elections cannot be held because of the pandemic.
The Australian man charged with murdering 51 people in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, has suddenly changed his plea to admit all charges at a hastily arranged court appearance. The man accused of the shootings, Brenton Tarrant, a former gym instructor from Australia, was charged with the murders and had maintained a not-guilty plea throughout. His trial was set down for the 2 June in Christchurch high court.
The U.S. Senate on Wednesday unanimously backed a $2 trillion bill aimed at helping unemployed workers and industries hurt by the coronavirus epidemic, as well as providing billions of dollars to buy urgently needed medical equipment. The rescue package – which would be the biggest ever passed by Congress – includes a $500 billion fund to help hard-hit industries and a comparable amount for direct payments of up to $3,000 apiece to millions of U.S. families.
The family of former FBI agent Robert Levinson, who disappeared 13 years ago on an island off Iran, said Wednesday that he died while being held in Iran as the longest-held hostage in American history. Alireza Miryousefi, spokesman at Iran’s Permanent Mission to the U.N., said Wednesday: “Iran has always maintained that its officials have no knowledge of Mr. Levinson’s whereabouts, and that he is not in Iranian custody.”
A total of 3,434 coronavirus patients have now have died in Spain – more than the recorded number of deaths in China where the outbreak began. Spain now has the world’s second-highest tally of COVID-19 deaths after 738 more were reported on Wednesday, the country’s deadliest toll in one day. France – another of Europe’s worst-hit nations – also reported 231 more deaths over the same 24-hour period, taking its total to 1,331 deaths.