Global corona toll climbs to 360,419

30 May, 2020 12:00 AM printer

PARIS: The novel coronavirus has killed at least 360,419 people since the outbreak first emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT on Friday, reports AFP.

At least 5,826,680 cases of coronavirus have been registered in 196 countries and territories. Of these, at least 2,370,400 are now considered recovered.

The tallies, using data collected by AFP from national authorities and information from the World Health Organization (WHO), probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections. 

Many countries are testing only symptomatic cases or the most serious ones.

The United States is the worst-hit country with 101,621 deaths from 1,721,926 cases. At least 399,991 people have been declared recovered.

After the US, the hardest-hit countries are Britain with 37,837 deaths from 269,127 cases, Italy with 33,142 deaths from 231,732 cases, France at 28,662 deaths and 186,238 cases and Spain with 27,119 deaths and 237,906 cases.

China — excluding Hong Kong and Macau — has to date declared 4,634 deaths and 82,995 cases. It has 78,291 recovered cases.

Europe overall has 176,117 deaths from 2,106,715 cases, the United States and Canada have 108,584 deaths from 1,810,438 infections, Latin America and the Caribbean 47,238 deaths from 887,605 cases, Asia 15,348 deaths from 505,458 cases, the Middle East 9,213 deaths from 378,407 cases, Africa 3,787 deaths from 129,527 cases, and Oceania 132 deaths from 8,533 cases.

Meanwhile, Russia reported a record increase of 232 coronavirus deaths on Friday as Moscow authorities released mortality figures to dispel allegations they were being manipulated.

Health officials reported a total of 4,374 deaths and 387,623 cases, the third-highest number of infections in the world after the United States and Brazil.

New infections were below 9,000 for the sixth day in a row at 8,572 cases, while a total of 159,257 people have recovered, according to an official tally.

Authorities have predicted a higher death toll in May compared to last month, attributing this to deaths among patients who were hospitalised during the peak of the epidemic several weeks ago.

Moscow — the worst-hit city in Russia — reported 2,332 new cases.

Officials in the capital on Thursday released details of mortality statistics for April in an effort to quash claims they have been under-reporting deaths to play down the scale of the crisis.

A total of 636 people died due to the coronavirus in Moscow last month, down from the previously reported toll of 639, health officials said.

Moscow’s health department also reported that 756 people had tested positive for the coronavirus but “died due to other reasons”.

In 360 of those cases, the virus exacerbated a patient’s underlying health complications, officials said.

On top of that, 169 cases were confirmed through autopsies, even though patients tested negative.

Officials said that based on those figures a total of 1,561 people died in the Russian capital in connection with the coronavirus in April, adding the toll was “undoubtedly lower” than the number of fatalities in New York and London.

Russia says its low virus death figures are also down to mass testing which has identified many cases with mild or no symptoms.

On the other hand, Iran on Friday announced its highest number of new coronavirus infections in nearly two months and warned the Middle East’s deadliest outbreak was worsening in some regions.

The government has largely lifted the closures it imposed after Iran’s first cases were confirmed in February but has been watching out for any resurgence in the number of infections.

Health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said 2,819 new cases were confirmed across the country in the past 24 hours, bringing the overall total to 146,668.

That figure is the highest Iran has announced for a single day since April 2.

New infections have been on a rising trajectory ever since hitting a near two-month low on May 2.

Jahanpour said that the virus had claimed another 50 lives over the same period, raising the overall toll to 7,677.

So far the government has reimposed a lockdown on just one province, Khuzestan on the border with Iraq in the southwest.

The province remains “red” — the highest level on Iran’s colour-coded risk scale.

“The provinces of Khorasan Razavi, east and west Azerbaijan, Lorestan, Kurdistan, Kermanshah, Hormozgan and Mazandaran are also in a critical situation,” Jahanpour said.