Lebanon Records 3,654 New Virus Cases and 40 Deaths

A highway is empty of cars during a lockdown aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus, in Beirut, Lebanon, Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. Lebanon's parliament has approved a draft law to allow the importing of vaccines into the tiny country to fight the spread of coronavirus. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

Lebanon recorded 3,654 new coronavirus cases over the past 24 hours, the Health Ministry said on Sunday, a drop from 5,872 cases registered on Saturday.

The country has typically reported lower tallies of coronavirus cases on weekends.

Forty more deaths were also registered on Sunday, taking the death toll to 1,865.

The new cases meanwhile raise the country’s overall tally since February 21 to 252,812 — among them 3,639 cases detected among arriving travelers and 153,038 recoveries.

Lebanon, a country of more than 6 million, including at least 1 million refugees, has seen a massive climb in infections since Christmas and New Year holidays. The surge has overwhelmed hospitals and the health care system.

During the holiday season, restrictions in place for months to combat the virus were eased to encourage spending by some 80,000 expatriates who returned home to celebrate.

As infections increased and ICU beds filled up, authorities imposed the strictest lockdown yet starting last Thursday, hoping that restrictions in place until February 1 could help contain the rise.

In recent weeks, between 4,000 and 5,000 infections were recorded a day and a rise in daily death tolls, up from numbers that hovered around 1,000 since November.



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