Italy is second with 86,498 cases and China is third with 81,340 confirmed cases. Here's the latest for March 27:

Felix Guzman, right, waves wears protective gloves and masks due to Covid-19 concerns as he waves goodbye after handing out disposable gloves and sanitizing wipes to people who are homeless on 34th Street, Saturday, March 21, 2020, in New York.
Felix Guzman, right, waves wears protective gloves and masks due to Covid-19 concerns as he waves goodbye after handing out disposable gloves and sanitizing wipes to people who are homeless on 34th Street, Saturday, March 21, 2020, in New York. (AP)

Friday, March 27, 2020

Confirmed coronavirus cases in US reach 100,000 - Reuters tally

Confirmed coronavirus cases in the United States reached 100,040, the highest number in the world, a Reuters tally showed.

The US on Thursday surpassed Italy and China to become the country with the largest number of coronavirus infections. The countries have 86,498 and 81,897 number of cases, respectively. 

Ireland to impose coronavirus lockdown

Ireland is to impose a lockdown in a bid to stem the spread of the coronavirus, Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said on Friday.

"Everybody must stay at home, in all circumstances," he said of the new measures to come into force at midnight (0000 GMT) on Saturday and last until 12 April.

Exceptions will be made for essential workers, medical appointments, exercise and the purchase of food.

Jordan reports first coronavirus death -state news agency

Jordan reported the first death from coronavirus, a woman in her 80s, state news agency announced on Twitter early on Saturday.

Jordan registered 23 new cases on Friday, bringing the total in the country to 235, the health minister announced. 

South Africa reports first virus death as lockdown starts

South Africa recorded its first death from coronavirus on Friday as its infection tally breached the 1,000 mark just hours after a three-week nationwide lockdown took effect.

The news came as World Health Organization director for Africa warned of a "dramatic evolution" of the disease which has, according to AFP tally, killed 94 out of nearly 3,500 infected people across the world's poorest continent.

South Africa, which has the highest number of confirmed cases at 1,170, recorded its first death on Friday.

Italy coronavirus deaths rise by 919, highest daily tally since start of outbreak

The death toll from an outbreak of coronavirus in Italy has surged by 919 to 9,134, the Civil Protection Agency said on Friday, easily the highest daily tally since the epidemic emerged on Feb. 21.

Prior to Friday's figure, the largest daily toll was registered on March 21, when 793 people died.

The 919 people who died over the last 24 hours compares with 712 deaths on Thursday, 683 on Wednesday, 743 on Tuesday and 602 on Monday.

The total number of confirmed cases rose to 86,498 from a previous 80,539, taking Italy's total past that of China, where the coronavirus epidemic emerged at the end of last year.

In Italy, of those originally infected nationwide, 10,950 had fully recovered on Friday, compared to 10,361 the day before. There were 3,732 people in intensive care against a previous 3,612.

The hardest-hit northern region of Lombardy reported a steep rise in fatalities compared with the day before and remains in a critical situation, with a total of 5,402 deaths and 37,298 cases.

That compared with 4,861 deaths and 34,889 cases reported up to Thursday.

Friday's cumulative death tally included 50 fatalities that actually occurred on Thursday in the northern Piedmont region, but whose notification arrived too late to be included in the official figures for March 26, the Civil Protection Agency said.

This has led to some confusion and means that some media outlets are reporting the Friday daily tally at 969, rather than 919. 

US sees 345 virus deaths, 18,000 new cases in 24 hours: tracker

The United States has seen a record 18,000 new confirmed coronavirus cases and 345 deaths over the past 24 hours, according to a Johns Hopkins University tracker.

There are now 97,028 declared virus cases in the country and there have been 1,475 deaths, Johns Hopkins said.

France reports 299 deaths

French health authorities  reported 299 new deaths from coronavirus on Thursday, taking the total to 1,995, as the government has decided to extend by two weeks the national lockdown, now due to end on April 15 at the earliest.

The climb in the number of deaths represents a daily rise of 18 percent, a less-marked increase from the previous day.

During a press conference, health agency director Jerome Salomon added that the number of cases had risen to 32,964, arise of 13 percent in 24 hours.

Covid-19 death toll hits 92 in Turkey

Seventeen more people died from novel coronavirus in Turkey in the past 24 hours, the Turkish health minister said Friday, bringing the death toll to 92.

Speaking at a press conference, Fahrettin Koca said 2,069 new patients have been diagnosed with Covid-19 as the total number of confirmed cases rose to 5,698.

He said 42 patients have been discharged from hospitals after recovering from the deadly virus as 344 others were treated at intense care units.

Koca said 7,533 tests have been done in the past 24 hours and the number of overall tests carried so far stood at over 47,000.

80 percent of life stopped in Turkey - interior minister

Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said Turkey banned walks at seashores, beaches, fishing, forests and parks on the weekends.

Soylu said around 80 percent of life has stopped in Turkey as 211,670 workplaces are now closed over coronavirus.

Turkey has relocated at least 5,800 refugees from its border with Greece as part of coronavirus prevention measures, said Soylu.

He added that Turkey to impose restrictions on inter-city bus travel from tonight.

US House passes $2.2T rescue package

Acting swiftly in an extraordinary time, the House rushed President Donald Trump a $2.2 trillion rescue package Friday, tossing a life preserver to a US economy and health care system left flailing by the coronavirus pandemic.

The House approved the sweeping measure by a voice vote, as strong majorities of both parties lined up behind the most colossal economic relief bill in the nation's history. 

It will ship payments of up to $1,200 to millions of Americans, bolster unemployment benefits, offer loans, grants and tax breaks to businesses large and small and flush billions more to states, local governments and the nation's all but overwhelmed health care system.

Trump said he would sign the measure immediately.

Belgium extends lockdown 

Belgium has extended its lockdown over the coronavirus crisis by two weeks until April 18, Belgian broadcaster RTBF said on Friday.

Belgium's government and key economic and medical experts were meeting on Friday to determine the country's next steps in the crisis, after the number of confirmed coronavirus cases passed 7,000. 

Canada reports 39 deaths 

Canada's Deputy Chief Medical Officer Howard Njoo said the country reported 4,043 coronavirus cases, 39 deaths as of Friday.

Over 300,000 coronavirus cases in Europe

More than 300,000 cases of the new coronavirus were recorded in Europe, with more than half registered in Italy (86,498) and Spain (64,059), according to an AFP tally at 1640 GMT on Friday.

There were a total of 305,851 cases in Europe, including 18,289 deaths making it the worst-hit continent. Asia was at second place with 102,043 cases of which 3,683 were fatal.

The tally, based on official figures, reflects only a fraction of the total cases worldwide.

WHO warns of 'dramatic evolution' of virus in Africa

The World Health Organization's regional director for Africa on Friday warned the continent faced a "dramatic evolution" of the coronavirus pandemic.

Of the 47 countries in the WHO Africa region — which includes sub-Saharan Africa and Algeria — 39 nations are now affected, compared with only one a month ago, Matshidiso Rebecca Moeti told French television channel France24.

Moeti said there have been about 300 cases per day in recent days, and called for "intensified action by African countries".

"The situation is very worrying, with a dramatic evolution: an increase geographically in the number of countries and also an increase in the number of infections," Moeti said.

France extends virus lockdown

France is extending by two weeks until at least April 15 its stay-at-home order for all people to curtail the coronavirus outbreak, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said Friday.

President Emmanuel Macron had ordered people in France to stay at home from March 17 for two weeks for all but essential tasks. But the scale of the epidemic in the country had made it inevitable that the lockdown would be extended.

As virus toll mounts in NY, more hospitals sought

Coronavirus cases in New York has risen to 44,635, up from 37,258 a day earlier, said Governor Andrew Cuomo.

There are more than 6,000 hospitalised Covid-19 patients in New York, with almost 1,600 in intensive care. 

New York has logged a nation-high of 519 deaths.

German Cup semi-finals suspended

The German Cup semi-finals, scheduled for the end of April, are to be suspended until further notice due to ongoing uncertainty over the coronavirus crisis, the German football association (DFB) announced Friday.

"It is expected that the current situation will be the same and football will not be able to take place on the scheduled cup dates," said the DFB said in a statement.

"Planning and preparation from a sporting perspective will not be possible for the clubs."

US navy hospital ship reaches virus-struck Los Angeles

A giant US naval hospital ship arrived in Los Angeles Friday, where it will be used to ease the strain on the city's coronavirus-swamped emergency rooms.

The USNS Mercy, which docked in the Port of Los Angeles, will quickly become the city's largest hospital with 1,000 beds.

It will not receive coronavirus patients, but will instead take patients with a wide range of other conditions or injuries, in order to free up facilities on land.

The ship will help "ease the burden on our emergency rooms and ICUs when the cases of Covid-19 grow in the weeks ahead," tweeted Mayor Eric Garcetti on Friday.

Germany deploys 15K soldiers 

The German army (Bundeswehr) will mobilise 15,000 soldiers to help support federal states and local authorities in the fight against the worsening coronavirus crisis, dpa news agency quoted Lieutenant General Martin Schelleis as saying in Berlin on Friday.

Speaking at a telephone news conference, Schelleis said the soldiers were not assigned to ongoing foreign missions and are now ready "on a step-by-step basis" to aid in the fight against the virus, known as Covid-19.

South Sudan suspends training of unified forces

South Sudan on Friday suspended the trainings of its unified forces due to coronavirus.

Thousands of troops from the government and opposition groups were undergoing trainings at a number of camps in South Sudan.

Trainings have been put on hold as part of me asures against the coronavirus pandemic, South Sudan Army spokesman Lul Ruai Koang said.

“We had to do that because of coronavirus, to prevent our forces from catching the virus,” he said.

AU Commission chairman under quarantine

African Union Commission Chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat announced Friday he is under quarantine after one of his staff members tested positive for the new coronavirus.

“I can confirm that one of my collaborators in my Office at the African Union Commission has tested positive for Covid-19. The staff member is in a stable condition.

“As a precautionary measure, I am under quarantine as are some other collaborators in my Office,” Mahamat tweeted.

IMF says world already in recession

The coronavirus has already plunged the global economy into recession, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said on Friday, adding immense pressure on emerging markets suffering from lost commerce, reduced exports and massive capital outflows.

Georgieva told a news conference that emerging market countries need at least $2.5 trillion in financial resources to get through the pandemic. Internal reserves and borrowing in local markets will be insufficient to cover these needs, so substantial funding from the IMF, other institutions and bilateral creditors will be necessary.

Over 11,000 people in Iran recover 

More than 11,000 people who were treated for the novel coronavirus infection in Iran have been discharged from hospitals since the first case was confirmed in the country's Qom province on February 19, according to health sources.

Over 32,000 people were confirmed to have contracted the virus, while a total of 11,133 people, or 35% of the total infections, have recovered from Covid-19 so far, according to data released by Iran’s Health Ministry.

The ministry announced that the average age of people who died from coronavirus is 67, and for those who are infected is 54.

Israel: Coronavirus cases surpass 3,000

The number of coronavirus cases in Israel has risen to 3,035 after 342 new cases were confirmed over the past 24 hours, the Health Ministry said on Friday.

A ministry statement cited by the Israeli Broadcasting Authority said 49 patients are in critical condition.

It added that four more Covid-19 patients died on Friday, raising Israel’s death toll to 12.

On Friday, the Israeli army announced that 500 soldiers will start helping police from Sunday in implementing the government’s measures to stem the spread of the virus.

Global virus death toll tops 25,000, most in Europe

The coronavirus pandemic has killed 25,066 people, with Europe accounting for most of the deaths, according to an AFP tally at 1430 GMT on Friday based on official statistics.

Europe was the worst-hit continent with 17,314 fatalities. Italy had the highest numbers of deaths in the world at 8,165, followed by Spain (4,858) and China (3,292).

At least 547,034 coronavirus cases have been registered around the world since December.

Coronavirus death toll rises to 759 in UK

Britain said 759 people had died after testing positive for coronavirus by 1700 GMT on Thursday, a jump of 181 people in 24 hours.

The toll, up 31 percent in a day, is the seventh highest in the world after Italy, Spain, China, Iran, France and the United States, according to a Reuters tally.

In England, patients were aged between 29 and 98 years old and all but four patients, aged between 82 and 91 years old, had underlying health conditions, health officials said.

The Department of Health also said 14,579 had tested positive for the virus in Britain. Earlier on Friday Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the country's Health Minister Matt Hancock said they had tested positive after experiencing mild symptoms.

They are now both self isolating and working from home.

Latin America coronavirus cases pass 10,000

Coronavirus cases in Latin America surpassed 10,000 on Friday, according to an AFP count based on official government and World Health Organization figures.

The first case in Latin America was reported on February 26 in Brazil, which has become the regional epicentre of the pandemic with almost 3,000 cases and 77 deaths.

Overall, there have been 182 deaths from Covid-19 in Latin America and almost 10,500 cases.

The worst affected countries after Brazil are Chile with more than 1,600 cases and Ecuador with over 1,400. However, while Chile has suffered five deaths, there have been 34 in Ecuador.

Netherlands reports 112 new deaths

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the Netherlands rose by 1,172, or 16 percent, to 8,603, health authorities said on Friday, with 112 new deaths.

The country's death total is now 546.

The Netherlands National Institute for Health (RIVM) said in its daily update that the increase in rate of spread of the virus appears to be slowing.

It said it hoped to be able to say "within several days" whether social distancing and other measures taken mid-month were working to slow the outbreak's spread.

Spain sees 769 new fatalities in 24 hours

The death toll in Spain soared over 4,800 after 769 people died in 24 hours, in what was a record one-day figure for fatalities, the government said.

Health ministry figures showed the number of deaths reached 4,858, while cases jumped to 64,059, although the rate of new infections appeared to be slowing, registering a 14 percent increase compared with 18 percent a day earlier.

Iran's death toll soars to 2,378

Iran is battling the worst coronavirus outbreak in the Middle East region. 

Ali Reza Vahabzadeh, an adviser to the Health Ministry, said in a tweet that the virus has killed another 144 people in the country, pushing the death toll to 2,378 amid 32,332 confirmed cases.

Authorities have urged people to stay home but have not imposed the sweeping lockdowns seen elsewhere in the region.

Iranian officials have repeatedly insisted they have the outbreak under control despite concerns it could overwhelm the country's health facilities.

Malaysia reports 130 new coronavirus cases

Malaysia reported 130 new coronavirus cases on and a total of 2,161 infections, the highest total in Southeast Asia.

The number of deaths from the virus outbreak rose to 26, the health ministry said.

Earlier on Friday, Malaysia announced a stimulus package worth $58.28 billion (250 billion ringgit) to help cushion the economic blow from the coronavirus pandemic.

Hong Kong reports the biggest daily rise in infections

Hong Kong reported 65 new coronavirus infections, its biggest daily rise so far, taking the total number of cases in the Chinese-ruled city to 518, health officials said.

Of the latest cases, 41 had recently returned from travelling abroad.

First two Covid-19 deaths in South Africa 

South Africa reported its first two deaths from the outbreak as the number of confirmed cases breached the 1,000 mark, the government said.

"This morning we wake South Africans up with sad news that we now have our first deaths resulting from Covid-19," the health ministry said in a statement.

Kazakhstan to shut down businesses in major cities for a week

Kazakhstan ordered most companies in its capital Nur-Sultan and biggest city Almaty to suspend work between March 30 and April 5, the government said, as part of measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Only state bodies, healthcare organisations, media, food retailers, pharmacies and other essential service providers will be allowed to continue work, it said in a statement. 

Russia to close restaurants, cafes from Saturday

The Russian government has ordered all cafes and restaurants to close for a week from Saturday to stem the spread of the coronavirus infection.

Russian regions are to "halt the activities of public food service organisations," except for delivery services, a government decree said.

Uzbekistan widens lockdowns

Uzbekistan locked down more cities and districts, and announced large bonus payments for medical workers, in its effort to slow the spread of a coronavirus, as it reported the country's first death and the number of cases climbed to 83.

A 72-year old man in the city of Namangan died on Friday morning, having suffered from a host of other diseases in addition to the coronavirus, the healthcare ministry said.

Municipal authorities in the province of Navoi, home to large gold- and uranium-mining companies and chemical plants, said they were locking down the cities of Navoi and Zarafshan, as well as several districts.

Authorities in the major tourism hub of Bukhara also said the city would close its borders.

The central Asian nation has already locked down some of its biggest cities, including the capital, Tashkent.

Australia strengthens self-isolation rules for returning citizens 

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison tightened enforcement on self-isolation for thousands of citizens returning from overseas, saying states and territories would quarantine all arrivals in hotels.

The Australian Defence Force would also be deployed to help enforce the self-isolation rules, Morrison said.

The number of coronavirus cases in Australia surpassed 3,000 on Friday from less than 100 at the start of March, according to health authorities, raising fears about a wider spread in the community. 

The country has reported 13 deaths from the pandemic so far.

Thailand reports 91 new cases, one death

Thailand reported 91 new coronavirus cases and 1 fatality, bringing the total to 1,136 cases and 5 deaths, a health official said.

The latest death was of a patient in Narathiwat province bordering Malaysia, he said.

The new infections consist of 30 patients linked to previous cases and 19 cases including imported ones, said Anupong Sujariyakul, a senior expert in preventive medicine at the Disease Control Department. 

The balance 42 people, who tested positive, are awaiting a probe to determine how they contracted the disease, he said.

So far, 97 patients have recovered and gone home since the outbreak.

South Korea reports 91 new coronavirus cases, total 9,332 

South Korea reported 91 new coronavirus cases, taking the national tally to 9,332, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. 

South Korea's boy band BTS will postpone its North America tour by two months to June due to concerns over the coronavirus pandemic, its management said.

Mexico case tally rises to 585, reports 2 more deaths

Mexico has registered 585 cases of coronavirus in the country, up from 475 the previous day, as well as two more deaths, a health ministry official said.

A total of eight people have died from the virus in Mexico.

Nicaragua reports first death

Nicaragua has registered the Central American country's first death from coronavirus, an HIV-positive person with multiple health conditions, the health ministry said on Thursday.

The country has registered one other instance of the virus.

China reports first local transmission in 3 days

Mainland China reported its first locally transmitted coronavirus infection in three days, although cases involving travellers from overseas continued to dominate the total number of new cases.

China's National Health Commission said on Friday that 55 new coronavirus cases were reported on the mainland on Thursday, with all but 1 case involving so-called imported cases. There were 67 new cases a day earlier.

The one locally transmitted case was in Zhejiang province, the health commission said. The total number of infections for mainland China now stands at 81,340, with the death toll rising by five to 3,292, it said.

Panama reports 116 new cases, 9 total deaths

Panama registered 116 new cases of coronavirus, health officials said, bringing the Central American country's total number of cases to 674.

Officials also said one more person has died, leading to nine deaths overall from the virus, and that 83 people are hospitalised.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies