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Coronavirus news you might have missed overnight: Concern over asylum seekers and children in custody raised amid coronavirus measures

Coronavirus continues to affect all corners of the world, impacting almost every aspect of our lives.

Here is your morning briefing of everything you may have missed overnight in the fight against Covid-19.

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Campaigners have raised alarm that dozens of asylum seekers living in shared accommodation are being forced to eat in close proximity to one another, breaching social distancing guidelines during the coronavirus pandemic.

Video footage emerged from an accommodation centre, the Urban House, in Wakefield, which showed over 60 people eating in a communal space with very little distance between them.

The Urban House, run by housing and care provider Mears Group under a Home Office contract, holds up to 330 people and no measures have been taken to ensure residents’ safety during the outbreak.

Diane Abbott, Labour’s shadow home secretary, said the conditions were “simply unacceptable”. She added: “Everyone needs to take social distancing measures seriously, and those in authority need to ensure social distancing is possible for everyone in their care.”

A spokesperson for Mears said it was “working closely with the Home Office and health colleagues to ensure the safety of its staff, residents and the communities in which they live”.

Donald Trump has activated the Defence Production Act to force General Motors to start producing ventilators to help areas struggling to cope with the coronavirus outbreak in the US.

The president made the move before signing a $2.2 trillion economic stabilisation bill, knows as the CARES Act, into law to mitigate an economic meltdown as a record 3.3 million Americans filed for unemployment in recent days.

The CARES Act, which dwarfs previous responses to crises including 9/11 and the 2008 financial crisis, amounts to half the entire $4 trillion (£3.2tn)-plus annual federal budget.

Before making the decision to force GM into action, Trump dismissed New York governor Andrew Cuomo’s claim his state needs 30,000 to 40,000 ventilators.

New York is currently at the epicentre of the US coronavirus outbreak and hospitals are battling to cope with the influx of patients requiring intensive treatment.

Several high-profile youth charities have written a series of letters to the justice secretary calling on ministers to consider early release for certain groups in youth custody.

With coronavirus measures in place, child prisons have cancelled all visits to youth offenders in custody, and education and offending behaviour interventions have stopped.

Young offenders are now spending majority of their time locked alone in their cells, with fears this time will likely increase over the coming weeks.

Campaigners said the combined effect of coronavirus on staff shortages and isolation would likely lead to an increased risk of self-harm.

Trish Regan, a Fox Business presenter who claimed coronavirus was an “impeachment scam”, has left the network to “focus on my family”.

The Fox journalist had already been removed from her prime-time slot after she said Democrats were engineering “mass hysteria to encourage a market sell-off” and were trying to impeach Donald Trump.

On Friday, Fox issued a statement confirming Regan had left the network.

Regan said: “I have enjoyed my time at Fox and now intend to focus on my family during these troubled times.

“I am grateful to my incredible team at Fox Business and for the many opportunities the network has provided me. I’m looking forward to this next chapter in my career.”

The Virunga National Park in Congo has barred visitors until 1 June, following advice from experts “indicating that primates, including mountain gorillas, are likely susceptible to complications arising from the Covid-19 virus”.

The park is home to about a third of the world’s mountain gorillas. Around 1,000 mountain gorillas live in protected areas in Congo, Uganda, and Rwanda.

In a letter published on Wednesday in the journal Nature, Thomas R Gillespie and Fabian H Leendertz of the Great Ape consortium said coronavirus could be dangerous and fatal for “our closest living relatives”.

“It is unknown whether the morbidity and mortality associated with SARS-CoV-2 in humans are similar in apes. However, transmission of even mild human pathogens to apes can lead to moderate-to-severe outcomes,” they wrote.

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