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    Global COVID-19 Cases Spike to Highest Level Post-Lockdown (169)
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    The death toll from the coronavirus infection in the world has topped 619,000, over 15 million cases have been detected, according to Baltimore, Maryland's Johns Hopkins University, which tracks and compiles data from national and local authorities, the media and other sources.

    The United States still has the highest case count in the world, with over 3.9 million infections; at least 142,756 have died.

    WHO Executive Director Michael Ryan said on 17 July that the coronavirus curve had plateaued in Brazil and that the country, which is only surpassed by the US in terms of total cases and deaths, could now push the disease down.

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    • 03:21

      Germany Records 569 New COVID-19 Cases, Total Reaches 203,368 – Robert Koch Institute

      MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Germany has confirmed 569 new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours, with the total count reaching 203,368, the Robert Koch Institute said on Thursday.

      The death toll has grown by six to 9,101 people within the same period of time. Some 189,000 people have recovered since the start of the outbreak.

      A day earlier, the country confirmed 454 new coronavirus cases and five fatalities.

    • 00:11

      Australia's State of Victoria Registers 403 New Cases of COVID-19, Media Report

    • 00:10

      Mexico's Coronavirus Cases Rise to 362,274, Deaths Reach 41,190 - Health Ministry

      MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) – The number of people, who have died of COVID-19 in Mexico, has risen by 790 to 41,190 within the past 24 hours, Jose Luis Alomia, the director of epidemiology at the Health Ministry, said.

      He also said on late Wednesday that the number of confirmed coronavirus cases had increased by 6,019 to 362,274 within the same period of time.

      A day earlier, the Latin American nation recorded 6,859 new cases of the coronavirus, with 915 fatalities.

    • 23:49

      Number of COVID-19 Cases in Argentina Rises by 5,782 to 141,900 – Health Ministry

      BUENOS AIRES (Sputnik) – Argentina has confirmed 5,782 new cases of the coronavirus across the country within the past 24 hours, with the total number of people infected with COVID-19 having reached 141,900, the national Ministry of Health said.

      "Today, 5,782 new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed, bringing the total number of [COVID-19] positive tests in the country to 141,900", the ministry said in a daily bulletin on late Wednesday.

      The death toll has increased by 98 to 2,588 people within the same period of time.

    • 21:53

      Brazil's Coronavirus Tally Rises Above 2,2 Mln, Deaths Reach 82,771 - Health Ministry

      MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Brazil has increased by record 67,860 to 2,227,514 within the past 24 hours, the national Ministry of Health said on late Wednesday.

      The death toll has risen by 1,284 to 82,771 people within the same period of time.

      A day earlier, Brazil reported about 41,008 new cases of the coronavirus disease and 1,367 new fatalities.

      Brazil comes second on a global tally of coronavirus cases after the United States, which has recorded over 3.9 million COVID-19 patients.

    • 20:50

      Moscow's Death Toll From COVID-19 Rises by 14 to 4,364 Over Past Day – Response Centre

      Another 14 patients, who were diagnosed with pneumonia and tested positive for the coronavirus infection, died in Moscow", the centre said.

      In the previous day, 19 people infected with the coronavirus died in Moscow.

    • 20:02

      WHO Reports Over 202,000 New COVID-19 Cases Globally as Total Surpasses 14.7Mln

      MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The global cumulative toll of confirmed coronavirus cases has surpassed 14.7 million, with 202,726 cases recorded over the past day, the World Health Organisation said in its daily situation report on Wednesday.

      The daily increment in coronavirus-related deaths worldwide has for weeks been steadily around 4,000. Over the past 24 hours, 4,286 people died from COVID-19, taking the global death toll to 612,054 people, according to the report.

      The cumulative global toll of confirmed cases has now reached 14,765,256, as stated in the report.

      Most cases and deaths — 7.8 million and close to 314,000, respectively — remain concentrated in the Americas. The United States continues to be the country with the highest single count of cases and fatalities — 3.8 million and over 140,000, respectively.

    • 19:22

      Turkey's Daily Number of COVID Cases Drops to 902, Lowest in 1.5 Months - Health Ministry

      "Today, 902 new COVID-19 cases have been detected. In total, 222,402 have been infected. Nineteen have died, with the death toll totaling 5,545", Health Minister Fahrettin Koca wrote on Twitter.

      Another 1,203 patients have recovered over the past day, taking the total to 205,214.

    • 18:00

      France Records 998 New Confirmed Cases

    • 16:51

      California Surpasses New York as US State With Most COVID-19 Cases, Johns Hopkins Finds

      WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - California has overtaken New York as the US state with the most reported novel coronavirus cases, according to data compiled by the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center.

      The data shows that by midday Wednesday California has reported 409,382 novel coronavirus cases while New York has reported 408,181 cases.

      New York is leading US states in the number of virus-related deaths with 32,520 fatalities as of noon on Wednesday, while California has reported 7,890 deaths.

      California has a substantially larger population than New York, 39.5 million and 19.4 million, respectively.

      Overall, the United States has reported 3.91 million novel coronavirus cases and more than 142,000 virus-related deaths, according to the data.

    • 16:35

      Number of COVID-19 Cases Exceeds 15 Mln Globally, AFP Tally Finds

      AFP counted at least 15,007,291 cases of the new coronavirus, including 617,603 deaths.

      Meanwhile, the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Centre reported that as of 16:25 GMT, 15,000,424 cases of the coronavirus disease have been registered since the start of the outbreak. The global death toll, as reported by the resource, stands at 617,832.

    • 16:23

      WHO Says People Unlikely to Get Vaccinated Before First Part of 2021

      "Realistically it is going to be the first part of next year before we start seeing people getting vaccinated", Mike Ryan, executive director of WHO's emergencies programme, said.

    • 15:48

      EU’s Economic Recovery After COVID-19 Could Be Derailed by Massive Second Wave, Central Bank Chief Says

      MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The economic recovery of the European Union after the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic could be significantly hampered by a second wave of the coronavirus and a return of lockdown measures hit Europe, Christine Lagarde, the president of the European Central Bank, said on Wednesday.

      "What could actually derail this baseline [of 8.7 percent contraction in 2020] - which seems to be in the right place now - would be a massive second wave, a reconfinement of significant scope, would be any catastrophic development that you can think of in geopolitical terms. What could aggravate the baseline is a major second wave", Lagarde said at an online discussion hosted by the Washington Post newspaper.

      A mild scenario for economic recovery of the EU includes a downfall of 5 percent this year, while a severe scenario projects a contraction of 12 percent, the central bank president noted.

      Following heated four-day discussions, EU leaders on Tuesday agreed on a new seven-year budget, also called the multiannual financial framework (MFF), and a COVID-19 recovery fund worth a combined 1.8 trillion euros ($2.1 trillion). The agreement still requires the approval of the European Parliament. The parliament’s President David Sassoli have already said that he would like to see some revisions to the proposals.

      Earlier in the month, the European Commission forecast that the euro area economy would plunge by 8.7 percent in 2020, but would rebound next year by 6.1 percent. At the same time, the EU economy is projected to contract by 8.3 percent this year and experience growth of 5.8 percent in 2021.

    • 15:47

      Switzerland Expands COVID-19 Quarantine List to 42 Countries

      GENEVA (Sputnik) - Switzerland is broadening its list of countries with high risk of COVID-19 starting Thursday, bringing the total number to 42, country's health authority said on Wednesday.

      Earlier in the month, Switzerland instituted a ten-day quarantine for those coming from a country with an unfavourable epidemiological situation, including Russia.

      "The list of countries and areas concerned will be updated on 23 July 2020", the Federal Office of Public health said.

      The new additions include Bosnia and Herzegovina, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eswatini, Guatemala, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Luxembourg, Maldives, Mexico, Montenegro, Palestine, Surinam, and the United Arab Emirates.

      Meanwhile, Belarus and Sweden will be removed from the least as of Thursday.

      Switzerland has confirmed a total of 33,883 cases, with a death toll of 1,693.

    • 15:46

      WHO Launches Law Lab to Help Countries Establish Legal Frameworks Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

      MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The World Health Organisation (WHO) has announced the launch of the Law Lab initiative that will facilitate the sharing of resources and best practice methods to help countries establish legal frameworks amid the ongoing coronavirus disease pandemic, according to a press release on Wednesday.

      "Launching today, the COVID-19 Law Lab initiative gathers and shares legal documents from over 190 countries across the world to help states establish and implement strong legal frameworks to manage the pandemic. The goal is to ensure that laws protect the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities and that they adhere to international human rights standards", the WHO press release read.

      The new Law Lab is a joint initiative involving the WHO, United Nations Development Programme, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, and Georgetown University’s O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law.

      According to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the initiative seeks to integrate the medical and legal spheres, particularly when it comes to legislation guiding health care practices.

      "Laws that impact health often fall outside the health sector. As health is global, legal frameworks should be aligned with international commitments to respond to current and emerging public health risks. A strong foundation of law for health is more important now than ever before", the director-general said.

      The new initiative will consist of a database of laws that have been implemented amid the ongoing pandemic and contain research on different legal frameworks.

    • 09:51

      Tokyo Confirms Over 200 New COVID-19 Cases, Total Toll Surpasses 10,000

      Tokyo has recorded over 200 new cases of the coronavirus infection over the past 24 hours, bringing the capital's tally to more than 10,000, Governor Koike Yuriko said on Wednesday.

      The Japanese capital has been registering more than 100 cases per day for 14 days in a row, with the highest daily increment of 293 being confirmed last week.

      "There is no final number so far, but the toll exceeded 200. About 230-240 people," Yuriko told reporters.

      Meanwhile, the prefecture of Osaka has confirmed around 120 new infections on Wednesday, marking the highest daily increase, Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura said. The official added that nearly 70 percent of all cases in the prefecture have been detected in people in their 30s or younger.

    • 09:28

      South Korea May Join Global Efforts to Develop, Supply COVID Vaccine

      South Korea is considering joining the ongoing international efforts to develop and supply vaccines against the novel coronavirus, Vice Health Minister Kim Ganglip said on Wednesday.

      "Our government is considering participating in international efforts," Vice Health Minister Kim Ganglip said during a regular briefing, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency, adding that Seoul may also provide financial assistance.

      According to the official, South Korea's participation in the process can help ensure rapid and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

      As of now, several countries are involved in vaccine development. An adenoviral vaccine, jointly developed by the University of Oxford and the pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, is approaching the final stage of clinical evaluation. The company is now running Phase 3 trials in Brazil and South Africa, and plans to conduct them in the United States in several weeks as well.

      The pharmaceutical firm said in June that it would supply up to 2 billion doses of the vaccine worldwide. It has already struck deals with the UK government, France, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. The company has also signed a deal with Russian pharmaceutical company R-Pharm and South Korea's SK Bioscience.

      Major international organizations, including the World Health Organization and the Vaccine Alliance, are currently working on the development of the COVID-19 vaccines together to secure fair access to future supplies.

    • 08:54

      Australia's Victoria Sees Record 484 COVID-19 Cases Over Past 24 Hours

      Australia's Victoria state has registered a record 484 new cases of COVID-19 over the past 24 hours, more than the entire country's all-time high of 469 cases registered on March 28, the state's Premier Daniel Andrews said on Wednesday.

      "There are 6,739 cases of coronavirus in Victoria, that is 484 new cases. But the number might change tomorrow, as there is about 30 that will come off from the yesterday's total in that process that we go through each night," Andrews said at a briefing.

      According to the premier, two people died from the disease in the past 24 hours, bringing the total state's death toll to 44.

      At the same time, nine in ten symptomatic residents fail to self-isolate properly, the official said.

      "From 3,810 cases, which are the cases between July 7 and July 21, I am very unhappy and very sad to have to report that nearly nine in 10 – or 3,400 cases – did not isolate between when they first felt sick and when they went to get a test," the premier said.

      The Victorian authorities have previously reintroduced quarantine-related restrictions amid a surge in new cases of the infection.

    • 08:20

      Four of Russia's Vaccines Against Coronavirus Already Proven Safe - Russian Prime Minister Mishustin

      Four of Russia's coronavirus vaccines that are now under development have already proven safe, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin said on Wednesday.

      "As of now, 17 scientific organizations [are working on vaccines], there are over 26 vaccines, this is what we know today. According to [Russian public health watchdog], Rospotrebnadzor, four vaccines have proven safe. Clinical trials of two vaccines — those developed by the Gamaleya Institute and the Defense Ministry — are on the final stage. [State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology] Vector and the Vaccine and Serum Scientific Research Institute are preparing to start trials," Mishustin told the lower house of the Russian parliament.

      The prime minister expressed hope that Russia would have a reliable vaccine against COVID-19 already this fall.

    • 07:38

      Russia Records 5,862 COVID-19 Cases in Past 24 Hours

      Russia has registered 5,862 COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours (5,842 yesterday), bringing the cumulative total to 789,190, the country's coronavirus response center said on Wednesday.

      "Over the past 24 hours, Russia has confirmed 5,862 COVID-19 cases in 83 regions, of which 1,516 (25.9 percent) have been detected actively, with people showing no clinical symptoms," the response center said in a statement, adding that the total count has now reached 789,190, with the daily increase dropping to 0.7 percent.

      Moscow has registered 638 cases in the past 24 hours, which is more than any other region in Russia, followed by the Sverdlovsk Region with 234 cases and the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Region with 221 new cases (compared to 602, 227 and 228 yesterday, respectively).

      No new cases have been recorded in the Nenets Autonomous Region and the Chukotka Autonomous Region.

      As many as 165 COVID-19 patients died in Russia over the past 24 hours (153 on the previous day), which brings the death toll to 12,745.

      A total of 9,669 coronavirus patients have been discharged (compared to 8,782 on the previous day), bringing the total number of recoveries to 572,053.

      According to the Russian public health watchdog, Rospotrebnadzor, over 25.7 million tests to detect COVID-19 have been conducted in the country since the beginning of the outbreak, and 267,000 suspected virus carriers remain under medical monitoring.

    • 07:24

      Number of Confirmed COVID-19 Cases in India Approaching 1.2Mln

      The number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in India has reached 1,192,915 since the outbreak with about 37,700 infections being recorded over the past 24 hours, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said on Wednesday.

      On Tuesday, India's COVID-19 total has grown by over 37,100. The daily growth has been surpassing 30,000 since mid-July.

      Meanwhile, as many as 648 coronavirus patients died in India in the past 24 hours, up from 587 the day before, bringing the death toll to 28,732. Over the same period, the number of cured patients has reached 753,049 after growing by 28,472.

      The central state of Maharashtra remains the worst-hit area, with 327,031 confirmed infections, followed by the southern state of Tamil Nadu with 180,643 cases, and the National Capital Territory of Delhi with 125,096 cases.

      India's coronavirus case count is the third highest in the world, with the US ranking first and Brazil second. At the same time, according to the Indian authorities, the country has one of the lowest mortality rate per 1 million people.

    • 06:07

      Tokyo Olympics Organizers Ruling Out Games Behind Closed Doors

      The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Organizing Committee is not considering for now the option of holding the event without spectators, but if the audience is not allowed cancellation of the Games would probably be the only choice, president Yoshiro Mori said in an interview published on Wednesday.

      The official gave an interview to the NHK broadcaster ahead of Thursday, the day the Summer Olympic Games were initially meant to start. In late March, the International Olympic Committee, together with the organizing committee of the Tokyo Games, announced that the event would be postponed to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Games are now scheduled to be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021.

      "It is impossible to artificially reduce [the number of spectators]. If [we are to] conduct reductions, they must be justified by something, for example, the presence of only Japanese viewers," Mori said.

      At the same time, the committee president said that the option of holding the Olympics without spectators was not currently being considered.

      "If it happens to be the only choice [holding without spectators], then we have to think. In this case, the question of cancellation may arise," Mori added.

      Commenting on the situation with the pandemic in Japan and across the world, the official said that the holding of the Games would be impossible if the epidemiological situation was the same as now, and the event depended largely on the development of COVID-19 vaccine and treatment.

    • 05:49

      Global COVID-19 Cases Exceed 15 Million

      The number of COVID-19 infections worldwide has surged past 15 million, according to a Reuters tally.

    • 05:42

      China Not Yet Ready to Reopen Checkpoints on Russian Border Due to COVID-19

      China is ready neither to reopen checkpoints on the border with Russia nor agree to Moscow's proposal to organize temporary border corridors for passengers, due to continuing COVID-19 concerns, Russian Consul General in the city of Harbin Vladimir Oschepkov said on Wednesday.

      "The situation with the operation of border crossing points on the Russian-Chinese border in terms of passenger traffic remains the same. Although we regularly address the Chinese side with the initiative to organize temporary corridors on the border, they are not ready for this yet," the diplomat said.

      Oschepkov noted that China was closely monitoring the epidemiological situation in the Russian border regions, which continue registering new infections. Thus, according to the Russian COVID-19 response center, 25 new cases of COVID-19 were detected on Tuesday in the Zabaykalsky Territory.

      "Of course, this causes concerns among Chinese partners, who have already faced the second wave of the epidemic in April and fear its repetition. Truth be told, the local authorities then did not manage to cope with the large number of infected people arriving from abroad," Oschepkov stated.

      At the same time, the diplomat expressed hope that Russian-Chinese border crossings would soon reopen for passengers and pledged that the Russian side would make every effort for that.

    • 05:27

      China Records 14 COVID-19 Cases, 22 Asymptomatic Carriers in Past Day

      China has recorded 14 cases of the coronavirus infection over the past 24 hours and another 22 asymptomatic COVID-19 carriers, the National Health Commission said on Wednesday, adding that 23 people recovered over the given period.

      According to the commission, out of the 14 new cases, nine are local, while the rest are imported.

      The country’s total number of confirmed coronavirus cases now stands at 83,707, with 4,634 deaths and 78,840 recoveries. Meanwhile, the total number of imported cases is 2,020, of which 1,940 have recovered.

      The number of confirmed cases in Hong Kong stands at 2,018, with 14 patients having died and 1,324 more having been discharged from hospitals. Forty-six people have been infected with the disease in Macao, all of them already released from medical facilities. Taiwan counts 455 patients, with seven of them having died and 440 others recovered.

      Since early April, Chinese health authorities began counting asymptomatic cases among their overall tally. Over the past day, seven people were released from under medical observation with suspected asymptomatic infection, while 164 people remain under observation.

    • 05:12

      Germany Records 454 New COVID-19 Cases, Total Reaches 202,799

      Germany has confirmed 454 new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours, down from 522 the day before, with the total count reaching 202,799, the Robert Koch Institute said on Wednesday.

      The death toll has grown by five to 9,095 people within the same period of time. Meanwhile, nearly 190,000 people have recovered since the start of the outbreak.

    • 04:59

      Kazakhstan Reports Nearly 1,700 New COVID-19 Cases Over Past Day

      Health authorities in Kazakhstan have detected 1,685 new coronavirus cases over the past day, bringing the overall total to 75,153 the country's interdepartmental commission on coronavirus said on Wednesday.

      Over the past week, the number of daily detected new cases was in the 1,600-1,800 range, dropping slightly to 1,499 on Monday.

      "We have registered 1,685 new cases of the coronavirus infection, including 942 people with symptoms and 743 without symptoms," the commission said on its Telegram channel.

      The death toll from COVID-19 in Kazakhstan has reached 610.

      The plurality of newly detected cases were registered in Almaty (241), East Kazakhstan Region (238) and Nur-Sultan (213).

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