The total number of coronavirus cases around the world passed the 7.2 million mark. Here are pandemic-related updates for June 9:

A woman visits the
A woman visits the "Quai Branly Jacques-Chirac" museum on June 9, 2020 in Paris. (AFP)

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

French coronavirus deaths remain under 100

France's coronavirus death toll rose by 87 or 0.3 percent to 29,296, the highest daily toll since June 2, but remained under 100 for the seventh day in a row, Health Ministry data showed.

The number of daily confirmed infections increased by 403 or 0.3 percent to 154,591, up on the 211 seen on Monday and 343 on Sunday, but remained below the more than 500 seen on Thursday through Saturday.

Daily recoveries triple new cases in Turkey

Turkey confirmed a record 3,218 daily recoveries from the virus as the country continues easing measures against the pandemic, according to its health minister.

The total number of recoveries from the disease hit 144,598 as 3,218 more patients were discharged from hospitals over the past day, Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter, citing Health Ministry data.

"In the last 24 hours, the number of new registries are one-third of the number of recovered patients. Due to new diagnoses, the need for intensive care and ventilator support increased," he said.

The country's death toll from the virus rose to 4,729, as it reported 18 new fatalities over the last 24 hours.

Ethiopia records first cases in refugee camps

Ethiopia has recorded the first coronavirus cases among its vast refugee population, prompting fears of rapid spread among a "very high-risk" group, a regional health official said.

The first refugee case is a 16-year-old Eritrean girl from the northern Adi Harush camp who travelled to an Orthodox Christian monastery in late May and fell ill shortly after her return, said Samuel Aregay, a public health emergency response officer in the Tigray region.

The girl's positive test results came back Friday, while two more refugees tested positive on Tuesday, Samuel said.

Italy reports 79 new deaths

Deaths from the epidemic in Italy climbed by 79 against 65 the day before, the Civil Protection Agency said, while the daily tally of new cases was broadly stable at 283 against 280 on Monday.

The total death toll now stands at 34,043, the agency said, the fourth highest in the world after those of the United States, Britain and Brazil.

The Civil Protection Agency said that of the 79 newly recorded deaths, 32 had actually occurred in previous days in the central region of Abruzzo, but had not previously been reported by Abruzzo's authorities.

The total number of confirmed cases in Italy since the start of its outbreak now amounts to 235,561, the seventh-highest global tally behind those of the United States, Russia, Brazil, Spain, Britain and India.

People registered as currently carrying the illness fell to 32,872 from 34,730 the day before.

WHO expert clarifies remarks on virus spread

A top World Health Organization expert has tried to clear up “misunderstandings” about comments she made that were widely understood to suggest that people without Covid-19 symptoms rarely transmit the coronavirus.

Maria Van Kerkhove, the UN health agency's technical lead on the virus pandemic, insisted that she was referring only to a few studies, not a complete picture, in the comments she made on Monday. 

Van Kerkhove's remarks on Monday raised confusion and questions among outside experts and health officials who have recommended and in some places required that people wear masks to try to prevent the virus from spreading.

UK death toll rises to 40,883

The United Kingdom's death toll from confirmed cases of Covid-19 rose by 286 to 40,883, according to government data.

UK is the second hardest-hit country after US in terms of virus deaths.

Eiffel tower to reopen on June 25

The Eiffel Tower, one of the most visited sites in Paris, will reopen to the public on June 25 more than three months after shuttering in France's lockdown, its operators said.

The landmark will emerge from its longest closure since World War II with limited visitor numbers at first, and face masks mandatory for all over the age of 11, said the Eiffel Tower website.

Mexico's Covid-19 peak still weeks away

New coronavirus cases in Mexico will keep rising for weeks to come, Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell said, after the number of confirmed cases exceeded several expected peaks for the country in recent weeks.

"We still haven't reached the maximum point," Lopez-Gatell said at a regular news conference. "For several more weeks, we will keep announcing there are more cases today than yesterday."

Emirates lays off thousands of pilots, cabin crew, plans more job cuts

Emirates, one of the world's biggest long-haul airlines, laid off hundreds of pilots and thousands of cabin crew as it manages a cash crunch caused by the pandemic, and more job cuts are planned, five company sources said.

More redundancies were expected at Emirates this week including both Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 pilots, the sources said on the condition of anonymity.

The workforce of 4,300 pilots and nearly 22,000 cabin crew could shrink by almost a third from its pre-coronavirus levels, three of the sources said.

Airlines headed for $84 billion net loss in 2020

International airlines are in line to make a combined net loss of more than $84 billion this year in the wake of the pandemic which has decimated air travel, the International Air Transport Association said.

"After $84 billion net losses this year we forecast supplementary losses of $15 billion in 2021," the IATA said at a news conference, revealing the extent to which its 290 member carriers have been affected by the virus and the ensuing global lockdown designed to limit its spread.

Masks to be compulsory in Spain until vaccine found

Wearing face masks will be compulsory in Spain until a coronavirus vaccine is found, with police empowered to hand out fines for non-compliance, the government said.

Health Minister Salvador Illa said the measure would continue after the country's state of emergency ends on June 21 and will "remain in place until we permanently defeat the virus, which is when we have an effective treatment or vaccine against it".

Since May 21, it has been compulsory for everyone aged six and over to wear a mask in public where it is not possible to maintain a two-metre (6.5 feet) distance from other people.

But when the lockdown formally ends, the measure will remain in place with the government introducing a fine of up to $113 (100 euros) for non-compliance – although the security distance will be slightly reduced to 1.5 metres.

The new regulations will come into force some 10 days before the country reopens its borders to international tourists on July 1.

UK drops plan to get children in school by summer

The British government backed away from plans to have all primary school children return to school in England before the summer holidays, following concerns by principals that they could not meet coronavirus social distancing requirements if everyone returned.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson admitted that the goal for England's approximately 5 million primary school children from age 4 to 11 was not possible, given constraints related to classroom sizes, the need for social distancing and inadequate numbers of teachers.

Some 145,000 people could die of Covid in US by August

University of Washington researchers estimated that 145,728 people could die of the virus in the United States by August, raising their grim forecast by more than 5,000 fatalities in a matter of days.

On Friday, the widely cited Institute for Health Metrics and evaluation at the university projected 140,496 virus deaths by August, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus. Researchers did not give a reason for the abrupt revision.

The new estimate came on the same day that Texas reported its highest number of hospitalisations so far in the pandemic and 22 US states showed at least a small uptick in the number of new confirmed cases, according to a count kept by Johns Hopkins University.

Moscow’s lockdown ends as cases in Russia pass 485,000

Residents of Moscow began to resume their normal routines as a lockdown designed to curb the spread was lifted after more than two months despite the Russian capital still reporting over a thousand daily cases.

Moscow's nearly 13 million residents are now free to go outside when they want, use public transport, and travel across the city in their own vehicles without any restrictions or digital passes.

Authorities said they had recorded 8,595 new nationwide cases in the last 24 hours, pushing Russia's tally to 485,253, the third-highest in the world. The country has recorded 6,142 deaths from the virus.

Moscow itself reported 1,572 new virus cases on Tuesday.

India's capital could soon see half a million cases

Delhi authorities warned that they expect cases in the Indian capital to shoot up almost 20 times to more than half a million in the coming weeks.

India is easing its national lockdown to ease the devastating economic blow dealt by the virus, but the disease is still raging across the world's second-most populous nation with around 270,000 reported infections, the fifth-highest caseload in the world.

It has reported almost 10,000 new infections in the past 24 hours with crowded megacities like Mumbai and Delhi the worst hit.

Manish Sisodia, Delhi's deputy chief minister, said after a crisis meeting that authorities expected infections to soar to 550,000 by the end of July, up from almost 30,000 at present.

Romania's president aims to extend 'state of alert'

Romania's current state of alert enforced on May 15 to fight the pandemic, must be extended by another 30 days until the middle of July, President Klaus Iohannis said.

Iohannis ordered a strict lockdown in early March to rein in the outbreak and but replaced the state of emergency with a softer state of alert mode last month. The move must be approved by the parliament to take full effect.

Romania has so far recorded 20,749 cases of whom 14,910 recovered and 1,345 died. 

Over the past 24 hours, it recorded 145 new cases.

Nepali police clash with lockdown demonstrators

Police fired water cannon at about 500 people who staged a demonstration in Kathmandu against the Nepali government's handling of the crisis.

Protesters, carrying banners reading "enough is enough", demanded better testing and quarantine facilities for returning migrant workers and greater transparency in government spending. 

Ten demonstrators who gathered near the prime minister's residence were arrested, police said.

Nepal imposed a nationwide lockdown on March 24 when the country had two confirmed coronavirus infections. The number of cases currently stands at 3,762 with 14 deaths. 

Bangladesh records highest daily deaths, cases

Bangladesh recorded the highest single-day fatality and case numbers, according to the official figures.

The South Asian country of 165 million recorded 45 deaths from the virus in the last 24 hours, the daily record since the first reported death on March 18, according to the Directorate General of Health Services.

The total live casualties stand at 975 with the new ones while the country on Tuesday also detected the highest one-day infections with 3,171 new cases, surging the total figure to 71,675.

So far 15,337 Covid-19 patients in Bangladesh, however, recovered from the disease.

Malaysia reports seven new cases

Malaysian health officials reported seven new cases, taking the cumulative total to 8,336.

The health ministry also reported no new deaths, leaving the toll at 117.

Hong Kong to let some students from China return 

Hong Kong will let some students from mainland China return to classes from June 15, the government said in a selective easing of border restrictions.

School buses will be arranged and students will be subject to health checks, including temperature screening and submission of health declaration forms in Hong Kong and bordering Shenzhenas, as they commute to school, the statement said.

Hong Kong has reported 1,108 coronavirus cases and four deaths.

Philippines reports six more deaths, 518 infections

The Philippine health ministry recorded six new deaths and 518 additional infections.

In a bulletin, the ministry said total deaths have increased to 1,071 while confirmed cases have reached 22,992.

UK records around 64,000 excess deaths during pandemic

About 64,000 more people than usual have died in the United Kingdom during this year's coronavirus pandemic, an expert from the Office for National Statistics said on.

Epidemiologists say excess mortality - deaths from all causes that exceed the five-year average for the time of year -is the best way of gauging the number to have died from a disease outbreak because it is internationally comparable. 

Indonesia reports biggest daily rise

Indonesia's health ministry reported 1,043 new infections, its biggest daily rise in cases, taking the total number of infections to 33,076.

There were also 40 new deaths, bringing total fatalities to 1,923, said Achmad Yurianto, a ministry official.

The Southeast Asian country has tested more than 281,650 for the virus as of Tuesday, data by its Covid-19 task force showed. 

Australian state lets sports fans back in stadiums

As Australia moves ahead with relaxing a lockdown to curb the spread, a state government gave the all-clear for more than 2,000 fans to attend an Australian Rules Football game at a stadium in Adelaide this weekend.

The professional sport was allowed to resume in Australia last month after a two-month hiatus, but it will become one of the first nations to admit spectators to stadiums as lockdowns begin to be relaxed in many countries.

Pakistan sees more than 100 virus deaths in a day

Pakistan recorded more than 100 deaths in a single day from for the first time since keeping statistics in mid-March, when the country first imposed a lockdown that has never been total.

As of Tuesday, Pakistan recorded 108,316 infections, with 4,646 new cases and a death toll that has climbed to 2,172 amid warnings from Prime Minister Imran Khan that Pakistan is not likely to see a peak in infections before August.

Despite criticism from medical professionals and opposition politicians, Khan has continued to ease lockdown restrictions saying the country’s ailing economy would collapse and the poorest among the country’s 220 million would suffer the most for prolonged lockdowns.

UAE capital extends lockdown another week

The capital of the United Arab Emirates has extended an emirate-wide lockdown for another week over the pandemic.

Government officials announced the extension of the lockdown, which has prevented people from leaving their area in Abu Dhabi.

The lockdown comes as the rest of the UAE is trying to reopen its non-oil economy after the pandemic devastated its tourism and airline industry.

South Korea cases grow

South Korea has reported 38 new cases and one more death, bringing national totals to 11,852 infections and 274 virus-related fatalities.

Figures from South Korea’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed 35 of the new cases came from the densely populated Seoul metropolitan area, where officials have struggled to trace transmissions linked to entertainment venues, church gatherings and low-income workers who couldn't afford to stay home.

WHO finds pandemic worsening

The head of the World Health Organization warned that the coronavirus pandemic is worsening. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted that about 75 percent of cases reported to the UN health agency on Sunday came from 10 countries in the Americas and South Asia. Daily case reports have topped 100,000 on nine of the past 10 days.

Tedros noted that several countries were seeing positive signs but added: “In these countries, the biggest threat now is complacency.”

UNGA will not meet in New York

The president of the UN General Assembly says world leaders will not be coming to New York for their annual gathering in late September for the first time in the 75-year history of the UN because of the pandemic.

But Tijjani Muhammad-Bande hopes to announce an alternative for leaders to deliver their usual speeches during the assembly’s so-called General Debate.

Virus forces cancellation of Asian peace prize

The Ramon Magsaysay Awards, regarded as Asia’s version of the Nobel Prize, have been cancelled this year due to the global pandemic, the only third time the annual awards were disrupted in six decades.

The Manila-based foundation that hands out the awards said it has no choice but to cancel the awards this year “with the Covid-19 pandemic practically immobilising the world”.

The awards were also cancelled due to a financial crisis in 1970 and a disastrous earthquake that hit the Philippines in 1990.

Brazil's fatalities rise to 37,134

Brazil reported a total of 37,134 deaths and 707,412 confirmed cases, according to the Council of State Health Secretaries (Conass), which brings together the heads of health departments of all of the country's states.

Conass, which is separate to the federal health ministry, began publishing its own coronavirus figures over the weekend after the ministry removed data from its website and stopped releasing cumulative totals for deaths and cases.

Mexico sees nearly 3,000 fresh cases

The Mexican government reported 2,999 new cases, while confirmed total infections stand at 120,102, according to data from the health ministry. 

The country's official coronavirus death toll rose to14,053.

Honduras begins reopening economy 

Honduras has gradually begun reopening its economy after almost three months of paralysis during the pandemic, even as some doctors warned the healthcare system may be overloaded.

The Central American nation imposed a nationwide curfew in mid-March, closing shops, industries and public offices. So far Honduras has registered 258 deaths caused by the virus.

President Juan Orlando Hernandez lamented "thousands" of businesses already shuttered in a pre-recorded television address.

"The economy could not stay closed any longer," said Hernandez, adding evening-to-morning curfew will be maintained.

Mexican president says in good health

Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has insisted that he was in good health and had no symptoms after a top official in his government tested positive for the virus.

"I don't get tested because I don't have symptoms. Fortunately, I'm fine and I look after myself," the president told reporters at his daily press conference in Mexico City.

The country's social security chief Zoe Robledo said Sunday he had tested positive and was self-isolating with his family. 

Robledo regularly appears at Lopez Obrador's daily press conferences.

Hungary launches virus questionnaire

Hungary’s government has published a new questionnaire with 13 topics centering on the pandemic. The "national consultation" will be mailed to citizens in the coming weeks. 

Prime Minister Viktor Orban has carried out several similar propaganda campaigns since returning to power in 2010. 

Nominally meant to get voters' opinions on issues ranging from a new constitution to immigration, the "national consultations" have been criticised for their politically-charged questions, as well as the limited options allowed as answers.

Denmark to allow public gatherings

Denmark plans to lift the limit on public gatherings from 50 to 100 people in July and to 200 in August as it eases measures to curb the spread, the government said. 

Earlier on Monday, the government raised the limit on public gatherings from 10 to 50 and allowed fitness centres and public swimming pools to reopen. 

The government said its plan to allow groups of 100 and 200 to gather from July 8 and August 8 respectively could be changed depending on a possible second wave of coronavirus in the country. 

Source: TRTWorld and agencies