BBC:The Middle East has many reasons to fear the coronavirus pandemic, but it has one big advantage when it comes to resisting it. Most people in the region are young.
A rough average is that at least 60% are under the age of 30. That makes them less susceptible to developing Covid-19, the illness that has killed so many people in countries with older populations.
Most governments in the region saw what was happening elsewhere and had time to impose curfews and social distancing measures.
But that is where the Middle East’s advantages end. Years of strife in the world’s least stable region have left weaknesses that the pandemic is sure to deepen.
Medical capabilities vary widely. The best hospitals in Israel are as good as any in the world. The healthcare systems in Yemen, Syria and Libya – never strong – have been severely damaged, and in places destroyed, by years of war.
Yemen was already in the grip, the UN said, of the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Now it has cases of Covid-19, which could spread fast in impoverished, overcrowded communities.
Aden, in the south, is in political turmoil. Even after two Covid-19 deaths were announced last week local residents were reported to be ignoring a curfew, still flocking to markets and mosques.
Those same young people who have the best chance of resisting the virus were, before it hit, leading demonstrations against their governments.
Every country has its own grievances, but in the Arab Middle East the protests have centred on corruption, cronyism and reform. Corrupt elites are accused of siphoning off public money that should have gone into public services, not least hospitals.
Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša congratulates Donald Trump despite no election result
Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša has handed Donald Trump victory in the 2020 United States Presi..
Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša has handed Donald Trump victory in the 2020 United States Presidential election, despite no official result being declared.
“Its pretty clear that American people have elected Donald Trump and Mike Pence for four more years,” Janša tweeted on Wednesday.
Donald Trump declared a premature victory at the White House and described the election process as a “major fraud on our nation”.
The campaign for Democrat candidate Joe Biden has described the bid to stop vote counting as “outrageous, unprecedented and incorrect”, and say they are “ready to deploy” legal teams.
The Slovenian Prime Minister’s tweet generated an immediate response from several MEPs, including German Nicola Beer from Renew Europe Group.
“Donald Trump has his deeply undemocratic, unjustified playbook on elections EU Member States should not play along,” tweeted Beer.
“The European Union, with all Member States, has a duty to show respect for every single vote. Period.”
No other EU leader has issued congratulations or themselves announced a result in the US election.
“While we wait for the election result, the EU remains ready to continue building a strong transatlantic partnership, based on our shared values and history,” said EU Vice-President Josep Borrell.
The electoral college votes have not all been counted at time of writing.