(Reuters) - China is battling its worst COVID-19 outbreak since March, while in the United States, President Joe Biden moved swiftly to coordinate a federal effort to fight the pandemic.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS * Eikon users, see COVID-19: MacroVitals https://apac1.apps.cp.thomsonreuters.com/cms/?navid=1592404098 for a case tracker and summary of news.
* Denmark has halted all flights arriving from the United Arab Emirates for five days due to potentially unreliable coronavirus tests in Dubai.
* Hungary has signed a deal to buy Russia's Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine, the first European Union country to do so.
* Poland could take legal action against Pfizer next month if the U.S. drugmaker does not deliver all scheduled doses of its COVID-19 vaccine.
* The British government has taken no decision on whether to pay 500 pounds ($683) to everyone in England who tests positive for COVID-19, environment minister George Eustice said.
* Beijing launched mass COVID-19 testing in some areas and Shanghai was testing all hospital staff as China battles its worst outbreak of the disease since March, with families fretting over Lunar New Year reunion plans amid new curbs.
* Prime Minister Narendra Modi said India was completely self-reliant on coronavirus vaccine supplies as the world's second-most populous country inoculated more than one million people within a week of starting a massive campaign.
* Japan stood firm on its commitment to host the Tokyo Olympics this year and denied a report of a possible cancellation but the pledge looks unlikely to ease public concern about holding the event during a pandemic.
* Mongolia's parliament has approved the resignation of Prime Minister Khurelsukh Ukhnaa after protests in the capital Ulaanbaatar over the government's handling of the pandemic, the state news agency, Montsame, said.
* U.S. President Joe Biden on Friday will sign two executive orders aimed at speeding pandemic stimulus checks to families who need it most and increasing food aid for children who normally rely on school meals as a main source for nutrition.
* Mexico's health ministry confirmed 1,803 new coronavirus deaths on Thursday, a daily record since the pandemic began last year in the country with the fourth-highest death toll.
* Even as President Joe Biden laments the nation's sluggish COVID-19 immunization launch for a pace he calls "dismal," West Virginia is touting its relative success in making the most of vaccine supplies it has received so far.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Mali plans to buy over 8.4 million doses of coronavirus vaccine and expects to start a vaccination campaign in April, the council of ministers said in a statement on Thursday.
* Amazon Inc said on Thursday it will open a pop-up clinic in its Seattle headquarters on Jan. 24 with an aim to vaccinate 2,000 eligible members of the public against COVID-19 on the first day.
* Pfizer and BioNTech have agreed to supply their COVID-19 vaccine to the World Health Organization co-led COVAX vaccine access scheme, two sources familiar with the deal said.
* Global shares slipped off record highs on Friday as gloomy data reminded investors of the struggles facing the economic recovery, curbing a rally fuelled by hopes of U.S. stimulus by newly inaugurated President Joe Biden.[MKTS/GLOB]
* Oil prices fell on Friday, retreating further from 11-month highs hit last week, weighed down by worries that new pandemic restrictions in China will curb fuel demand in the world's biggest oil importer.
* British retailers struggled to recover in December from a partial lockdown the previous month, marking a weak end to their worst year on record, while public debt has climbed to its highest since 1962, official data showed.
(Compiled by Linda Pasquini, Krishna Chandra Eluri, Devika Syamnath and Veronica Snoj; Editing by Giles Elgood, Sriraj Kalluvila and Arun Koyyur)