Latest on the coronavirus: Global cases pass 2.1 million

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The number of confirmed coronavirus cases worldwide passed 2.15 million on April 17 as the pandemic swept across the globe.

Johns Hopkins University’s website showed over 145,000 people have died from the virus.

The total number of people recovered from COVID-19 reached passed 548,000 according to the data.

Americas

  • U.S. President Donald Trump plans to announce new guidelines to reopen the economy on April 16, despite concerns from health experts, governors and business leaders about a resurgence in cases without more testing and protocols in place.
  • Mexico’s government said its health experts have recommended the country extend its current measures until May 30.  Mexico could force the closure of companies in non-essential sectors if they refuse to suspend operations during a state of emergency.
  • A two-month-old baby born to Warao indigenous refugees from Venezuela has tested positive, the mayor’s office in the Brazilian city of Manaus said.

Europe

  • Spain’s national death toll exceeded 19,000, but figures from the region of Catalonia indicated the real total could be several thousand higher.
  • Britain’s outbreak is starting to peak but it is too early to lift the lockdown, its health minister said.
  • Hungary is extending lockdown measures by one week from Saturday.
  • The Swiss government will start a gradual relaxation of restrictions from April 27.
  • A study of Dutch blood donors found that around 3% have developed antibodies against the virus, an indication of what percentage of the population may have already had the disease.

Asia and the Pacific

  • China reported fewer imported cases on April 16, but said locally transmitted infections rose, with the capital Beijing seeing new local cases for the first time in more than three weeks.
  • Japan’s prime minister expanded a state of emergency to include the entire country and said the government was considering cash payouts for all.
  • South Korea’s ruling party won an absolute majority in parliamentary elections in a landslide victory propelled by successes in the country’s efforts to contain the virus.
  • India charged a Muslim leader with culpable homicide not amounting to murder for holding a gathering last month that authorities say led to a big jump in infections.
  • China said the WHO has said there is no evidence that the virus was made in a lab, after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Beijing “needs to come clean” on what they know.

Middle East and Africa

  • Iran’s official death toll reached 4,869 on April 16 but a parliamentary report said the actual number could be much higher.
  • The U.S. announced on April 16 that it will provide $5 million to the Palestinian Authority to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
  • Oman locked down a textile market in a town popular with tourists as the country reported more than 100 new infections to take its count above 1,000.
  • Six Gulf Arab states approved Kuwait’s proposal for a common network for food supply safety.
  • South Africa will allow mines to operate at a capacity of 50% during a nationwide lockdown.

Hurriyet Daily News

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