Covid-19 wrap: US records 598 deaths in 24 hours as Latin America, Caribbean cases breach a million

Keeping you up to date on the latest novel coronavirus (Covid-19) news from around the world.

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US records 598 coronavirus deaths in 24 hours - Johns Hopkins

Washington – The United States recorded 598 coronavirus deaths on Sunday, bringing its total to 104 356 since the global pandemic began, according to a tally kept by Johns Hopkins University.

The country has officially logged 1 788 762 cases of the virus, far more than any other nation, the tracker by the Baltimore-based university showed at 20:30 (00:30 GMT Monday).

 - AFP

More than a million Covid-19 cases in Latin America and Caribbean - AFP toll

Montevideo – More than one million cases of Covid-19 have been recorded in Latin America and the Caribbean, half of them in Brazil, according to an AFP toll on Sunday based on official data.

Since the start of the novel coronavirus pandemic, 1 016 828 people have been infected, with 514 849 cases recorded in Brazil, which currently has the world's fourth highest Covid-19 death toll after the United States, Britain and Italy.

 - AFP

Moscow eases lockdown despite high virus caseload

Moscow – Shopping malls and parks are set to reopen in Moscow on Monday as the Russian capital eases coronavirus restrictions despite having the world's third-largest caseload.

The relaxation of the confinement orders in Moscow, the epicentre of Russia's outbreak with a population of more than 12 million, comes after President Vladimir Putin announced the epidemic had passed its peak in the country.

Under lockdown since 30 March, residents of Europe's most populous city were until now only allowed to leave their homes for brief trips to shop, walk dogs or travel to essential jobs with a permit.

While Muscovites welcomed the opportunity to return to parks and malls after weeks of being cooped up at home, many ridiculed the Moscow mayor's "experiment" aimed at regulating people's walks and exercise.

 - AFP

Debates rage in Britain as some children go back to school

London – Britain partially reopened schools on Monday and allowed the most vulnerable to venture outdoors despite warnings that the world's second worst-hit country is moving too quickly out of its coronavirus lockdown.

A death toll that now officially stands at 38 489 has piled political pressure on Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who was elected in December with a big majority.

Johnson spent much of the past week stamping out a scandal sparked by his chief adviser's decision to drive to a picturesque castle with his family while everyone was under orders to limit outdoor exercise to an hour a day.

Dozens of members of Johnson's own party joined a failed effort by the opposition to get Dominic Cummings fired for undermining the government's public message on health.

The furore over Cummings appears to have abated but concern about Johnson's handling of the crisis remains.

 - AFP

100-year-old Indonesian woman beats coronavirus

Surabaya, Indonesia – A 100-year-old Indonesian woman has recovered from coronavirus, making her the country's oldest survivor of the deadly respiratory illness.

Kamtim, who like many Indonesians goes by one name, was discharged from hospital this week after a month of treatment in her hometown Surabaya, Indonesia's second-biggest city, officials said.

East Java Governor Khofifah Indar Parawansa said she hoped Kamtim's story would give a boost to at-risk residents – the illness is especially dangerous for older people and those with chronic conditions. "I hope her recovery can motivate elderly people during the pandemic," Parawansa added.

Siti Aminah, the woman's daughter-in-law, chalked up her recovery to "discipline and persistence".

"Every day I checked her condition with nurses and they always told me that she was very strong and diligent about taking her medicine," Aminah told AFP. "She was very motivated to get better."

 - AFP

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