Xinhua Asia-Pacific news summary at 1000 GMT, May 15

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JAKARTA -- The Indonesian government on Friday announced 490 new confirmed cases of the COVID-19, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 16,496.

At a press conference, the government's spokesperson for the COVID-19-related matters Achmad Yurianto said that there were also 33 new deaths, taking the total number of fatalities to 1,076. (Indonesia-COVID-19-Cases)

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HANOI -- The ASEAN Defense Senior Officials' Meeting (ADSOM) was held on Friday in video conference format to discuss regional defense cooperation in the fight against COVID-19 and post-epidemic directions.

Under the chair of Nguyen Chi Vinh, Vietnam's deputy minister of defense and Vietnam's ADSOM chief, delegates from ASEAN countries exchanged views on regional defense cooperation in dealing with COVID-19 including sharing experiences of the ASEAN defense forces in the prevention of the epidemic as well as future cooperation directions for disease response, the Vietnamese ministry said in a press release. (ASEAN-Defense-COVID-19)

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KUALA LUMPUR -- Malaysia reported another 36 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, bringing the national total to 6,855, the Health Ministry said.

Health Ministry Director-General Noor Hisham Abdullah said at a press briefing that 88 more patients have been discharged, bringing the total number to 5,439 or 79.3 percent of all cases. (Malaysia-COVID-19-Cases)

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NEW DELHI -- India is set to enter the fourth phase of lockdown from May 18 as the country's COVID-19 cases continue to rise, surpassing the 80,000 mark on Friday.

As of Friday, the number of COVID-19 cases stood at 81,970 and 2,649 people have lost their lives. Friday is the 52nd day of the national lockdown in India. (India-COVID-19-Lockdown)

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SYDNEY -- Sydney began to ease some COVID-19 restrictions from Friday, allowing people to go to some beaches, pubs and eateries for recreational activities, while authorities warned the infection rate could rise if people become complacent.

Australia's state of New South Wales (NSW), of which Sydney is the capital, announced easing on its public gathering rules from Friday allowing a maximum of 10 people to congregate together. (Australia-Restrictions-Ease) Enditem

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