International Covid-19 news: Nearly 396,000 deaths, France reboots tourism

Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis.

Brazil threatens WHO exit

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro threatens to follow in the footsteps of US President Donald Trump and pull out of the World Health Organization.

"I'm telling you right now, the United States left the WHO, and we're studying that, in the future. Either the WHO works without ideological bias, or we leave, too," he tells journalists outside the presidential palace.

Nearly 396,000 deaths

The pandemic has killed at least 395,977 people worldwide since it surfaced in China late last year, according to an AFP tally at 1100 GMT on Saturday, based on official sources.

The United States is the worst-hit country with 109,143 deaths, followed by Britain with 40,261, Brazil with 35,026, Italy with 33,774, and France with 29,111 fatalities.

Global rallies

Ignoring social distancing measures, a weekend of protests kick off against racism and police brutality in cities worldwide, from Sydney to London.

Tens of thousands of Australians defy Prime Minister Scott Morrison's call to "find a better way", while thousands in Britain ignore the health minister's warnings.

Events are also scheduled in Amsterdam, and in Madrid on Brussels on Sunday, as well as for the second weekend running across the US.

But in Paris, police ban a rally planned outside the US embassy compound and another near the Eiffel Tower.

Iran warns of long road

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani tells Iranians to prepare to live with the virus "for a long time", as the country that is battling the Middle East's deadliest outbreak gradually eases restrictions but also sees a rising trajectory of infection figures.

"We must end all gatherings, be it marriage, mourning, or family visits, until told otherwise by the health minister," Rouhani says during the weekly virus taskforce meeting broadcast on TV.

France reboots tourism

France's Palace of Versailles reopens, but without the American and Chinese tourists that usually make up a third of its visitors.

And its overseas territory French Polynesia says it will reopen to international travel next month.

Tokyo Olympics: 2021 or never

High-ranking Olympic official Pierre-Olivier Beckers confirms that the delayed Tokyo Olympics "will be held in 2021 or not at all", reiterating the stance put forward by Japan and International Olympic Committee that next year is the last chance to hold postponed Games.

And... act

California will allow film, television and music production to resume from June 12 if conditions permit, the governor's office says. The reopening will be subject to approval by local health officers.

It is not yet clear if major Hollywood studios will also be able to resume operations from next week because Los Angeles county is one of the main epicentres in California, recording about half the infections and deaths in the state.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
Voting Booth
Would you choose to continue working from home after the coronavirus lockdown if given the option?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Yes, it's much better for me
40% - 7279 votes
No ways! I can't wait to get back to the office
12% - 2125 votes
A mixture of both would suit me best
48% - 8776 votes
Brent Crude
All Share
Top 40
Financial 15
Industrial 25
Resource 10
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo