Latest on the coronavirus: Global death toll tops 34,000
ANKARA - Reuters
COVID-19 continues its relentless spread, as the daily number of infections worldwide continues to jump sharply. World Health Organization figures show the increase in new infections is now about 70,000 per day - up from about 50,000 just days ago.
More than 34,000 people have died worldwide.
The U.S. had over 139,000 infections and 2,400 deaths, a running tally by a prominent university showed on March 29 evening.
- Italy on March 29 said the death toll climbed by 756 to 10,779, the second successive fall in the daily rate.
- The country's government will "inevitably" extend beyond April 3 the containment measures it had approved to stem the outbreak, the regional affairs minister said on March 29.
- Ten more patients have died in Ireland to bring the total death toll to 46, the Department of Health said on March 29. It confirmed 200 new confirmed cases for a total of 2,615.
- France reported 292 new deaths on March 29, up 13 percent from the previous day and taking the total to 2,606 since March 1. The number of known cases rose to 40,174 from 37,575 a day earlier.
- Slovenia will further tighten its restrictions on citizens' movements, imposing restrictions on people moving outside their local municipalities from Monday. The country has so far confirmed 730 cases, with 11 deaths.
- The number of confirmed cases in Germany has risen to 57,298 and 455 people have died of the disease. Cases rose by 4,751, compared with the previous day, while the death toll climbed by 66.
- Spain prepared to enter its third week under near-total lockdown on March 29, as the government approved a strengthening of measures and the death toll rose to 6,528.
- Prime Minister Boris Johnson is warning Britons in a letter to 30 million households that things will get worse before they get better, as he himself self-isolates in Downing Street to recover from the coronavirus.
- Britain has reported 17,089 confirmed cases of the disease and 1,019 deaths and the peak of the epidemic in the country is expected to come in a few weeks.
- President Donald Trump said on March 28 that he would issue a travel warning for the hard-hit New York area to limit the spread of the coronavirus, backing off from an earlier suggestion that he might try to cut off the region entirely.
- The U.S. death count crossed 2,100 on March 28, more than double the level from two days ago. The United States has now recorded more than 123,000 cases, the most of any country in the world.
- The U.S. House of Representatives on March 27 approved a $2.2 trillion aid package and Trump quickly signed it into law.
- The number of deaths in New York state increased by 237 in the past day, reaching a total of 965 since the outbreak began, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on March 29. The state also reported 7,195 new confirmed coronavirus cases in the past day for a total of 59,513.
- Confirmed cases in Canada rose to 5,866 from 5,655 on March 28, and 63 deaths were reported, according to its chief medical officer.
- Uruguay and Bolivia have confirmed their first deaths.
- Costa Rica said on March 29 it has confirmed 19 new cases in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases in the Central American nation to 314.
- Panama on March 29 confirmed 7 new deaths, bringing the toll to 24 since the outbreak hit the Central American nation. There were 88 new infections, bringing the total number of cases to 989.
- Mexico on March 29 confirmed 145 new cases and four new deaths in the last 24 hours, for a total of 993 cases and 20 deaths.
- Argentina said on March 29 that the country would extend a mandatory nationwide quarantine period until the middle of April to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Asia and the Pacific
- Mainland China reported 31 new cases on March 29, including one locally transmitted infection, dropping from 45 cases a day earlier. Four new deaths were reported, putting the cumulative death toll in the mainland at 3,304 at the end on March 29. Total number of infections to date rose to 81,470.
- China's central bank unexpectedly cut the rate on reverse repurchase agreements by 20 basis points, the largest in nearly five years.
- South Korea reported 78 new cases, taking the national tally to 9,661. The death toll rose to 158, from 152 a day earlier. President Moon Jae-in said that the government will provide emergency cash payments to many families and draw up a second supplementary budget soon to ease the economic impact.
- Singapore's central bank aggressively eased its monetary policy, with the city-state's bellwether economy bracing for a deep recession.
- Thailand saw 136 new cases, raising the total number of infections to 1,524.
- Syria said on March 29 that a woman who died after being rushed to the hospital for emergency treatment was found to have been infected by coronavirus in the country's first officially reported death from the disease.
- A third person infected with the coronavirus has died in Taiwan, the government said late on March 29, as the number of cases on the island approached 300.
- Vietnam's prime minister asked major cities to prepare for possible lockdowns as the number of confirmed cases reached nearly 200.
- Authorities in the Russian capital announced a partial lockdown, ordering residents to stay at home from Monday in their toughest move yet to slow the spread of the coronavirus after the number of official cases in Moscow passed the 1,000-mark.
- Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked the nation's poor for forgiveness as the economic and human toll from his 21-day nationwide lockdown deepens and criticism mounts about a lack of adequate planning ahead of the decision.
- The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Japanese organizers are in the final stages of talks to set the opening date for the Tokyo Games in July next year, Japanese media said.[nL4N2BM012
Middle East and Africa
- South Africa's confirmed cases increased by 93 to 1,280 people on March 29 and the death toll doubled to two, as the country entered the third day of a national lockdown.
- Nigerian President on March 29 ordered the cessation of movement in Lagos and the capital Abuja for 14 days to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
- Zimbabwe legalized the use of foreign currencies in domestic transactions on March 29, less than a year after abandoning dollarisation, as the country readies for a 21-day lockdown.
- The United Arab Emirates on March 28 extended to April 5 a nightly curfew to sterilize public places to combat the spread of coronavirus as neighboring Qatar reported its first death from the disease.
- To stem the spread of the virus in crowded jails, Iran's judiciary on March 29 extended furloughs for 100,000 prisoners. On March 17, Iran said it had freed about 85,000 people from jail temporarily, including political prisoners.
- Asian shares slipped and oil prices took another tumble as fears mounted that the global shutdown for the coronavirus could last for months, doing untold harm to economies despite central banks' best efforts.
- Qatar Airways will have to seek government support eventually, Chief Executive Akbar al-Baker told Reuters on March 29, warning that the Middle East carrier could soon run out of the cash needed to continue flying.
- Egypt's central bank said it has instructed banks to put temporary limits on daily withdrawals and deposits amid concerns over the spread of the coronavirus.
- South Africa may approach the International Monetary Fund and World Bank for funding, Finance Minister Tito Mboweni said in the Sunday Times newspaper.
- Investors rushed into cash and out of bonds at a record pace over the past week, BofA's weekly fund flow data showed on March 27.