International Update: Global Covid-19 cases pass 6.6 million – Brazil death toll third highest world wide – Argentina extends lockdown

5 June 2020 (Last Updated June 5th, 2020 09:47)

5 June

Global: The number of known coronavirus infections has passed 6.6 million, with 6,601,349 currently confirmed, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker.

Brazil: Brazil’s death toll overtakes Italy’s to become third-highest worldwide. Brazil’s total Covid-19 death toll blew past that of Italy on Thursday, as the Health Ministry reported 1,437 deaths in the last 24 hours and 30,925 additional coronavirus cases.

India: India registered more than 9,800 new cases of the coronavirus in another biggest single-day spike.

South Africa: South Africa has recorded 3,267 coronavirus cases in 24 hours, the biggest increase since the pandemic hit the country. Africa’s biggest industrial power now has a total of 40,792 infections, the health ministry said. It saw a rise of 56 deaths, bring the total to 848.

Australia: Ebola drug remdesivir endorsed as a coronavirus treatment in Australia. The antiviral drug remdesivir has been recommended for the treatment of Covid-19 patients in Australia, by the national taskforce bringing together the country’s peak health groups.

US: New York governor, Andrew Cuomo, urged protestors to get tested for coronavirus, saying several days and nights of demonstrations in the state after the killing of George Floyd could accelerate the spread. He noted that an estimated 30,000 people have protested in the state.

New York City’s health department produced data on Thursday that showed no deaths of virus-carriers the previous day, giving officials cause to cautiously celebrate. Three deaths probably attributable to Covid-19 occurred in untested patients, the department reported. It was a far cry from a week in mid-April when the city recorded about 700 deaths a day.

UK: Covid-19 causing 10,000 dementia deaths beyond infections, UK research says. There were almost 10,000 unexplained extra deaths among people with dementia in April, according to official figures that have prompted alarm about the severe impact of social isolation on people with the condition.

Patients with high blood pressure admitted to hospital with coronavirus infections are twice as likely to die as those without the condition, researchers said on Friday.

Japan: A Tokyo 2020 executive board member said on Friday that organisers will need to monitor the coronavirus situation until next spring to decide whether to hold the Summer Olympics next year, Kyodo News reported.

Africa: Low Covid-19 figures for Africa are “broadly accurate”, the World Health Organization’s director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti, has said. There were concerns that low levels of testing, poor infrastructure and a lack of cooperation from some governments may be disguising the true extent of the disease’s spread.

South Korea: South Korea reported on Friday 39 new cases of the coronavirus over a 24-hour period, a continuation of an upward trend in new infections in the country.

China: China reported five new confirmed coronavirus cases, all of them brought by Chinese citizens from outside the country.

Spain: A second round of random testing in Spain shows only 5.2 percent of the population carry antibodies against the new coronavirus.

Fiji: Frank Bainimarama, the prime minister of Fiji, said all coronavirus patients in the Pacific island nation have now recovered.

Lockdown updates

Europe: The European Commission is urging member states to fully reopen all internal borders by the end of this month. European states should abolish border controls within the bloc in the coming weeks as the coronavirus situation has improved everywhere, EU Commissioner Ylva Johansson told Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper in an interview on Friday.

UK: Passengers on England’s buses, subways and trains will have to wear face coverings starting June 15 to help protect fellow passengers from the coronavirus.

Turkey: Turkey will impose a two-day weekend curfew in 15 cities as part of efforts to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, the interior ministry said.

Argentina: Argentina extended until June 28 a mandatory lockdown in capital Buenos Aires and other areas with high cases of coronavirus, President Alberto Fernandez announced, after the country surpassed 20,000 confirmed cases earlier in the day.

Economic updates

Africa: Antonio Guterres, the United Nations chief, said the coronavirus pandemic has compounded “the dire humanitarian and security situations” in Mali and Africa’s Sahel region.

US: US pandemic jobless claims passed 42 million after another 1.9 million people filed for unemployment benefits last week. The pace of layoffs has slowed dramatically from its peak of 6.6 million at the start of April as states begin to relax quarantines.