10:14 GMT04 April 2020
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    BERLIN (Sputnik) - Two people have died after contracting the coronavirus disease, officially called COVID-19, in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, a representative of the region’s Ministry of Health said on Monday.

    "We confirm two instances of deaths. We are talking about victims in Essen and Heinsberg," the representative said during a phone call, adding that no further information about the victims would be forthcoming and this would violate data privacy laws.

    Later in the day, officials from the city of Essen confirmed to Sputnik that an 89-year-old woman had died after contracting the disease in Germany.

    "We are talking about an 89-year-old resident of the city. She did not leave Germany and contracted the disease after contacting another infected person. She died as a result of pneumonia caused by coronavirus," officials from Essen’s city administration said.

    Officials in Heinsberg also confirmed the death of a person as a result of contracting COVID-19, although the victim's age or gender was not confirmed.

    "We confirm the death of one person from coronavirus. The details are yet to be announced," an official said.

    Earlier in the day, the German newspaper Bild reported that the first two COVID-19-related deaths in Germany. More than 1,110 cases of the disease have been confirmed so far in the European country, with over half of cases being registered in North Rhine-Westphalia.

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    2020 Coronavirus Outbreak (445)
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