Global cases of coronavirus pass half a million

Global cases of coronavirus pass half a million

The global number of coronavirus cases topped half a million on Thursday, Euronews reports.

Italy reported 6,153 new coronavirus infections on Thursday, pushing the global total over half a million, AP reported, citing a count kept by Johns Hopkins University.

Italy also announced 662 more deaths, bringing the country's death toll to 8,165 - the highest in the world.

France noted an aggravation of its situation, reporting 365 new deaths in one day, including a 16-year-old girl. The French death toll has reached a total of 1,696 deaths. The country, which has been under lockdown for a week, has 29,155 confirmed cases.

Spain extended its state of emergency for two more weeks to allow the government to extend stringent lockdown measures in a desperate attempt to contain the coronavirus.

Spain reported 655 new deaths in one day on Thursday bringing the death toll to 4,089. There are over 56,000 confirmed cases of the virus in the country.

Spain has surpassed China, where the pandemic began, in the overall number of COVID-19 deaths. Spain and Italy have the highest fatality rates in the global pandemic.

And on Thursday the UK announced 115 new deaths, taking its total to 578. The day before the country had confirmed the death of the deputy to the British ambassador to Hungary, Steven Dick, 37, of COVID-19.

Over 225,000 people have been fined in France for violating lockdown rules, the French Interior minister said on Thursday.

The Moody's credit rating agency said it is forecasting an economic recession for all G20 countries in 2020, while United Nations director-general Antonio Guterres said coronavirus "threatens the whole of humanity."

South Africa, which is on the eve of a three-week lockdown, announced on Thursday its coronavirus cases are nearing 1,000, the most cases in Africa.

India on Tuesday started implementing the world's biggest lockdown of 1.3 billion people, following the example of a number of countries, especially in Europe, which remains the global coronavirus hotspot.

Finland, which has 880 confirmed cases of coronavirus and has reported three deaths, announced on Wednesday the lockdown of the capital Helsinki and its region, starting Friday until 19 April.

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