Cyprus Mail

Friday, April 10: Coronavirus global update

As of 18.00 today more than 1,633,390 people have been infected across the world and over 99,493 have died but at the same time 366,710 people have recovered.

The USA is now the country with the most infected cases (476,397) ahead of Spain (157,053) who overtook Italy (147,577) earlier this week. Germany and France follow with 119,624 and 117,749 cases respectively

Confirmed deaths by country:
Italy: 18,849
USA: 17,838
Spain: 15,970
France: 12,210
UK: 8,931




All the latest news in brief as it happens

20:26 Moscow to introduce movement permit 

Moscow’s mayor Sergei Sobyanin said on Friday that the city would begin to gradually introduce a system of passes next week to monitor and regulate residents’ movements during a partial lockdown aimed at stopping the spread of the coronavirus.

Speaking on a state television channel, Sobyanin said that the passes would be introduced in stages. The first would focus on creating permits for those travelling to work.

19:55 UK’s death toll up by 980

The UK death toll from COVID-19 has risen by 980 to 8,958, health minister Matt Hancock said on Friday, its biggest daily rise to date.

The toll exceeded the deadliest day reported by Italy on March 28, the country worst hit by the coronavirus.

19:51 Bolsonaro hits the streets in latest social distancing snub

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro took to the streets of Brasilia on Friday, drawing crowds and greeting followers in his latest public attack on social isolation measures to fight the coronavirus outbreak.

19.03  Italy’s daily coronavirus death toll and new cases decline slightly

Deaths from the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy rose by 570 on Friday, down from 610 the day before, and the number of new cases also slowed modestly to 3,951 from a previous 4,204.

The latest tallies broadly confirm what experts describe as a plateau of new cases and deaths, which are no longer accelerating but are still not falling steeply.

The total death toll since the outbreak came to light on Feb. 21 rose to 18,849, the Civil Protection Agency said, the highest in the world. The number of officially confirmed cases climbed to 147,577, the third highest global tally behind those of the United States and Spain.

19.00 WHO warns about dangers of premature lifting of COVID-19 restrictions

The World Health Organization (WHO) warned countries on Friday to be cautious about lifting restrictions introduced to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.

The WHO would like to see an easing, but at the same time “lifting restrictions could lead to a deadly resurgence,” Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a press conference.

18.26 U.S. coronavirus deaths top 17,000 

U.S. deaths due to the coronavirus topped 17,000 on Friday, according to a Reuters tally, although there are signs that Americans staying home was curbing new infections.

U.S. officials warned Americans to expect alarming numbers of coronavirus deaths this week, even as there was evidence that the number of new infections was flattening in New York state, the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak.

18.25 Ireland extends coronavirus lockdown until May 5

Ireland on Friday extended stay-at-home restrictions designed to slow the spread of coronavirus until May 5, Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said.

“The restrictions we introduced two weeks ago were due to expire on Sunday. Today the expert recommendation is to extend them for a further three weeks,” he said in a televised address.

Ireland has shut bars, restaurants and non-essential retail and told people not to travel more than two kilometres (1.2 miles) from their home or visit friends and family.

18.22 Finland’s emergency supply agency head quits over face mask scandal

Finland’s government said on Friday it accepted the resignation of the head of the country’s emergency supply agency, over the multi-million euro purchase of Chinese face masks that proved unsuitable for hospital use.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin earlier said she had lost confidence in the official, Tomi Lounema.

18:15 Vending machines selling face masks appear on Warsaw streets

Vending machines selling face masks, gloves and sanitisers appeared on the streets of Poland’s two biggest cities this week, as the country stepped up social distancing rules to curtail the spread of the coronavirus.

So far two vending machines have been installed in Warsaw and five in Krakow and there are plans to install several dozen or maybe even several hundred more in the next two weeks, according to the Polish Vending Association, which launched the initiative.

18:02 In epicentre of French virus outbreak, medical workers believe peak has passed

As head of the urgent cases team in the Mulhouse ambulance service, Marc Noizet has been at the eye of the coronavirus storm that swept through this eastern French city. In the past few days, he has noticed a change.

“Things are getting better,” he said of the region around Mulhouse, the epicentre of France’s deadliest outbreak. His crews are being called out to fewer coronavirus-related cases. “That allows the staff to rest a bit, to take a breath.”

17:53 Russia to block ‘fake news’ criticism of coronavirus measures

Russia’s Prosecutor General’s Office said it would start blocking from Friday access to “fake news” social media posts criticising quarantine measures taken by the city of Moscow to curb the new coronavirus.

Moscow officials have unveiled a tracking app and also plan to roll out a QR-code system to show codes to police monitoring compliance with the lockdown in Russia, where there have been 94 deaths and nearly 12,000 cases.

17:04 Portugal set to extend coronavirus lockdown till May 1

Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said on Friday he would propose next week extending a national lockdown till May 1 as the number of coronavirus cases in the country rose above 15,000.

Parliament is likely to approve his request. Portugal declared a 15-day state of emergency on March 18 and last week approved its extension by a further 15 days till April 17.

16:23 England’s coronavirus hospital death toll rises by 866 to 8,114

The coronavirus death toll in English hospitals rose over the past 24 hours by 866 to a total of 8,114 on Friday, health officials reported.

Those who died were aged between 27 and 100, and 56 of them had no known underlying health condition, it said.

15:52 Norway says it may cut oil output if OPEC+ deal implemented

Norway, Western Europe’s largest oil producer, signalled on Friday it could cut its output if the deal negotiated by the so-called OPEC+ nations was implemented as planned.

Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy Tina Bru is taking part in Friday’s G20 video conference to discuss the situation in the energy market after demand and prices were hammered by the coronavirus crisis.

15:32 Moscow’s coronavirus crisis still in ‘foothills’ far from peak, warns mayor

The mayor of Moscow warned the coronavirus outbreak was only in the “foothills” of its development in the Russian capital and that a serious test lay ahead as new infections nationwide shot up by a record daily amount on Friday.

Russia reported 1,786 new cases, bringing its tally to 11,917, even as Moscow and many other regions neared the end of their second week in a state of lockdown aimed at halting the contagion. Ninety-four people have died, authorities say.

14:42 Spain’s coronavirus death toll curve flattening at last

The coronavirus death toll curve in Spain flattened further on Friday as the government discussed different strategies to start phasing out one of the world’s strictest lockdowns.

Spaniards have been off the streets since mid-March, but a slowdown of the COVID-19 disease’s spread and its death toll has enabled officials to start discussing a gradual easing.

14:30 France reports 50 Covid-19 cases aboard aircraft carrier

Fifty crew members aboard France’s sole aircraft carrier, the Charles de Gaulle, have tested positive for the new coronavirus and parts of the ship have been put in lockdown, the armed forces ministry said on Friday.

A ministry statement said that three sailors had been evacuated by air to a military hospital in Toulon, southern France, home port of the carrier.

14.25 US health expert Fauci: now is no time to back off

The top US infectious disease expert warned on Friday that even though hard-hit spots like New York are showing positive results in the battle against coronavirus, it is too early to relax restrictions on Americans.

“What we’re seeing right now is favorable signs,” Fauci said in an interview on CNN. “We would want to see a clear indication that you were very, very clearly and strongly going in the right direction, because the one thing you don’t want to do is you don’t want to get out there prematurely and then wind up back in the same situation.

13.57 EU gives green light to 115 mln euro Polish virus measures

The European Union has approved a 527 million zloty (€115m) scheme by the Polish government to support its economy during the coronavirus pandemic.

The scheme is intended to partially cover interest on business loans and will take the form of direct grants, the European Commission said in a statement on Friday.

“(The) scheme will allow Poland to relieve companies of part of the interest they have to pay on loans, thus alleviating their financial burden in the current crisis,” said Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President in charge of competition policy.

13.57 Swiss coronavirus death toll passes 800, positive tests top 24,000

The Swiss death toll from coronavirus has reached 805, the country’s public health ministry said on Friday, rising from 756 people on Thursday.

The number of positive tests also increased to 24,308, up from 23,574 on Thursday, it said.

13.37 Air Zimbabwe to put workers on unpaid leave over coronavirus

Zimbabwe’s state-owned airline will put workers on indefinite unpaid leave after revenue dried up with the new coronavirus outbreak virtually grounding global air travel, an internal notice to employees seen by Reuters said.

With $300 million of debt, Air Zimbabwe was already facing financial trouble before the outbreak of the virus.

The perennially loss-making national carrier said it would retain skeleton staff for adhoc operations and airworthiness compliance, adding that wages remained its biggest cost. Employees would, however, receive their April salaries.

13.33 Spain’s coronavirus death toll curve flattening at last

The coronavirus death toll curve in Spain flattened further on Friday as the government discussed different strategies to start phasing out one of the world’s strictest lockdowns.

Spaniards have been off the streets since mid-March, but a slowdown of the COVID-19 disease’s spread and its death toll has enabled officials to start discussing a gradual easing.

“Any step towards de-escalation of such an intense lockdown must be done with extreme caution,” Deputy Prime Minister Pablo Iglesias told local TV channel TVE.

13.29 Dutch report 2,000 extra deaths in early April, likely due to coronavirus

There were around 2,000 more deaths in the Netherlands in the first week of April than would normally be expected, its statistics office said on Friday, likely the result of the coronavirus outbreak.

Figures released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) showed around 5,100 deaths registered in the country in the week ended April 5, compared to around 3,200 a week in the same period a year ago, and 3,100 a week in early 2020 before the country registered its first COVID-19 case in late February.

13.07 Iran’s death toll from coronavirus outbreak rises to 4,232

Iran’s total death toll from the new coronavirus outbreak rose to 4,232 on Friday with 122 lives lost in the past 24 hours, according to a health ministry spokesman. The total number of people diagnosed with the disease increased by 1,972 in the past 24 hours to a total of 68,192, the spokesman, Kianoush Jahanpur, said on state TV, adding that 3,969 people were in critical condition.

12.40 Spain’s daily coronavirus death toll increase eases again

The number of people dying of coronavirus in Spain each day fell again on Friday as the country registered 605 fatalities over the past 24 hours, the health ministry said.

The overall death toll rose to 15,843 on Friday from 15,238 the previous day, it said in a statement. The total number of coronavirus cases rose to 157,022 on Friday from 152,446 on Thursday.

11.48 Indonesia reports 219 new coronavirus cases, total 3,512

Indonesia reported 219 new coronavirus cases and 26 new deaths, a health ministry official Achmad Yurianto told reporters on Friday.

This brings the total number of cases and deaths to 3,512 and 306, respectively.

11.41 Kazakhstan to extend coronavirus emergency to end April -Interfax

Kazakhstan will extend the state of emergency declared over the coronavirus outbreak until the end of April, Interfax news agency reported on Friday, citing parliamentary deputy Vladimir Bozhko who is on its emergency commission.

The state of emergency ,which has allowed the government to lock down all provinces and major cities and shut down many businesses, was originally due to end on April 15.

11.31 Malaysia extends movement curbs until April 28 to contain coronavirus outbreak

Malaysia on Friday extended movement and travel restrictions that have been put in place to contain a coronavirus outbreak for two more weeks, until April 28.

The curbs, first imposed on March 18, were originally set to end on April 14. Malaysia has the highest number of coronavirus infections in Southeast Asia with more than 4,200 reported, including 118 new cases on Friday.

11.24 Hungary’s ‘real test’ yet to come, PM warns as coronavirus cases jump

Hungary’s restrictive steps have managed to slow the spread of coronavirus but the “real test” is yet to come, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Friday as the government reported the single biggest daily increase in infections.

Orban said that at the peak of the crisis, Hungary would need about 8,000 ventilators and intensive-care hospital beds, of which around 2,000 would be available in “normal times”.

11.18 Philippines records 18 more coronavirus deaths, 119 new cases

The Philippines’ health ministry on Friday reported 18 more coronavirus deaths and 119 new infections.

The death toll in the Southeast Asian country has reached 221, while confirmed cases totalled 4,195.

Sixteen more patients have recovered, bringing total recoveries to 140, the ministry said in a bulletin.

10.40 Russia reports new record daily rise of coronavirus cases

Russia reported 1,786 more coronavirus cases on Friday, its largest daily rise so far, which took the national tally of confirmed infections to 11,917.

The number of coronavirus-related deaths rose by 18 to 94, the Russian coronavirus crisis response center said in a statement.

10.27 Shanghai stocks record best week in five on stimulus hopes

Shanghai stocks slid on Friday on bleak factory gate data that pointed to a prolonged recovery, but ended the week with their biggest gains in five on hopes of more economic stimulus to shore up the world’s second-largest economy.

* The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.6%, to 3,769.18, while the Shanghai Composite Index shed 1% to 2,796.63 points.

** For the week, CSI300 gained 1.5%, while SSEC advanced 1.2%, its biggest weekly gain since the week of March 6.

** China’s factory gate prices fell the most in five months in March, with deflation deepening and set to worsen in coming months as the economic damage wrought by the coroanvirus shuts down many countries.

** Analysts expect a deep first-quarter economic contraction in China and have grown increasingly pessimistic about the country’s prospects for 2020 due to the pandemic’s sweeping global impact.

9.42 Poland may reach peak of coronavirus infections in coming days -govt spokesman

Poland may see the peak of infections from the coronavirus in the coming days, government spokesman Piotr Muller said on Friday.

“It seems that if we will maintain our discipline, there is a chance that this infection rise may reach its maximum in coming days, to gradually slow down later,” Muller told public broadcaster TVP Info.

Earlier, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said Poland may see a peak of infections in May or June.

9.32 China says its trade faces unprecedented challenges due to coronavirus

China’s foreign trade faces unprecedented challenges due to the coronavirus epidemic that has spread to more than 200 countries, China’s assistant commerce minister said on Friday, amid growing fears of a deep global recession triggered by the virus.

Ren Hongbin told reporters during a briefing that a survey conducted by the ministry shows that trade firms across the board face difficulties from order cancellations or delays, and that new orders are also at risk.

9.20 Taiwan reports 6th death from coronavirus, 382 cases

A sixth person infected with the coronavirus has died in Taiwan, Health Minister Chen Shih-chung said on Friday.

The island also recorded two new infections, bringing the total to 382 cases, he told a news conference.

09.18 Hungary reports biggest daily rise in coronavirus cases

Hungary’s confirmed coronavirus cases have increased by 210 to 1,190, the single largest daily increase since the outbreak of the virus, government data showed on Friday.

09.07 Cambodia adopts law to allow for emergency powers to tackle coronavirus

Cambodia’s parliament passed a law on Friday to prepare the way for a state of emergency, which Prime Minister Hun Sen has said he might have to declare to reinforce the campaign against the coronavirus.

Human rights groups say an emergency would give sweeping powers to Hun Sen, who Western countries have long condemned for crackdowns on opponents, civil rights groups and the media.

The law allows the government under an emergency to monitor communications, control media and social media, prohibit or restrict distribution of information that could generate public fear or unrest, or that could damage national security.

08.24 East Timor reports second case of coronavirus

East Timor has confirmed another case of coronavirus, health authorities said on Friday, bringing the total number of cases to two.

The infected person had travelled from Indonesia’s West Timor region, Integrated Crisis Management Center spokesman, Sergio Lobo, told a news conference.

The tiny Southeast Asian nation with a population of less than 1.3 million reported its first case on March 21. This patient has now recovered, Lobo said.

08.01 Thailand reports 50 new coronavirus cases, 1 new death

Thailand reported 50 new coronavirus cases and the death of a 43-year-old woman on Friday.

Of the new cases, 27 are linked to previous cases and eight who are waiting for investigation into how they caught the disease, said Taweesin Wisanuyothin, a spokesman of the government’s Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration

Three of the new cases were imported, Wisanuyothin said.

07.44 Yemen confirms first coronavirus case – supreme national emergency committee

Yemen has reported its first coronavirus case in Hadhramaut Governorate, supreme national emergency committee tweeted early on Friday.

The committee added that the patient was stable and receiving health care, without elaborating.

The United Nations and Western allies had pointed to the threat of coronavirus outbreak in the war-battered country.

07.30 Helicopters, fines in Australia’s Easter travel crackdown 

Australia will deploy helicopters, set up police checkpoints and hand out hefty fines to deter people from breaking an Easter travel ban, officials warned on Friday, in their toughest crackdown against the coronavirus, even as its spread slows.

More than half of Australians identify themselves as Christians, with many in past years attending church services or going on trips to visit family and friends during Easter public holidays that run until Monday.

07.26 Germany’s coronavirus cases rise by 5,323, deaths by 266 – RKI

he number of confirmed coronavirus infections in Germany rose by 5,323 in the past 24 hours to 113,525 on Friday, climbing for a fourth straight day after four previous days of declines, data from the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases showed.

The reported death toll rose by 266 to 2,373.

05.58 Boeing considers potential 10% cut to workforce – WSJ

Boeing Co is considering a plan to cut its workforce by about 10%, which could involve buyouts, early retirements and involuntary layoffs, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

The potential job cuts are expected to largely target Boeing’s commercial arm, the report added.

04.16 Mexico reports first deaths of pregnant women from coronavirus

Mexico has recorded its first two deaths of pregnant women from the coronavirus as the overall number of fatalities in the country reached 194, the health ministry said on Thursday.

One of the two women gave birth to a son before passing away, deputy health minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell told a news conference, noting that pregnant women are highly susceptible to infection caused by the virus. For a short time the baby boy had respiratory problems and is still delicate, he added.

03.08 Mexico registers 3,441 cases of coronavirus and 194 deaths

Mexico has registered 260 new cases of the coronavirus, bringing the country’s total to 3,441 cases and 194 deaths, the health ministry said on Thursday.

02.54 Mainland China reports 42 new coronavirus cases vs 63 day earlier

Mainland China reported on Friday 42 new coronavirus cases, including 38 cases involving travellers from overseas, down from 63 cases a day earlier.

China’s National Health Commission said in a statement that 47 new asymptomatic coronavirus cases were also reported in the mainland, down from 61 new cases a day earlier.

The total number of infections in mainland China now stands at 81,907, while the death toll rose by one to 3,336.

02.36 Panama reports 224 new coronavirus cases, bringing total to 2,752

Panama registered 224 new cases of the coronavirus, bringing the country’s total to 2,752 cases, the health ministry said on Thursday.

The death toll rose to 66.

00.20 Universal Studios extends theme park closures to at least May 31

Universal Studios said on Thursday it was extending the closure of its theme parks in Florida and California until at least May 31 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We are extending the closure of Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood through at least May 31. This includes our theme parks and Universal CityWalk at both destinations,” the company said in a statement.

00.02 UK urges citizens to stay at home over Easter

Britain urged its citizens to stay at home over the coming Easter holidays, amid fears that the pull of wanting to see family and friends over the Christian holy day could undermine efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Britain is enduring its third week of the most stringent peacetime restrictions on daily life in its history, during which people have been ordered to stay at home and police given powers to punish those who break the rules.

“Everyone has a role to play in this, and the best way we can protect our loved ones is by staying away this Easter,” a government spokeswoman said.

00.01 EU’s 1 trillion euro coronavirus plan most important in its history -France’s Le Maire

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said European Union member states had agreed to mobilise 1 trillion euros to shore up the economy in response to the coronavirus crisis, in the most important economic plan in the EU’s history.

Le Maire said on a call with reporters that the European Stability Mechanism will be activated with light conditionality. He also said the agreement will make 500 billion euros available immediately and that a recovery fund will follow.


What happened on Thursday


  • Spain’s prime minister warned that nationwide confinement would likely last until May even though he said the worst should soon be over and the death toll slowed.
  • The Italian government is planning to extend its lockdown until May 3, two trade union sources told Reuters on Thursday after meeting ministers.
  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson left intensive care on Thursday evening as he continues to recover from COVID-19, but he remains under close observation in hospital.
  • The British government defended its early handling of the outbreak after a Reuters investigation found its scientific advisers were too slow to communicate their growing concerns.
  • Social distancing measures have helped Germany to slightly slow the spread of the coronavirus, Chancellor Angela Merkel said.
  • Russia reported a record one-day rise in cases, pushing its tally to more than 10,000.
  • The Czech Republic plans to roll out a system of quickly tracking and isolating contacts of people with the virus to eventually allow the lifting of blanket restrictions.
  • Slovakia closed off several Roma settlements in the eastern part of the country after reports of virus clusters in five of them.
  • Bulgaria’s prime minister said the country’s Orthodox churches and temples will be open for traditional Palm Sunday and Easter services despite the outbreak


  • Americans must persevere with social distancing, U.S. medical and state officials said, as New York hospitalizations ebbed but the state’s death toll spiked again. Meanwhile, total cases in the country crossed 427,000, with the death toll nearing 32,500.
  • U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the American economy could start to reopen for business in May, despite experts’ emphasis on prolonged social distancing measures.
  • Canada’s death toll is set to soar from the current 435 to as high as 22,000 by the end of the pandemic, while the economy lost a record 1 million jobs last month.
  • Lockdowns in Brazil’s largest cities are beginning to slip, according to new data this week seen and analyzed by Reuters, with more people leaving their homes as President Jair Bolsonaro continues to criticize the measures.
  • Chile will start handing out certificates to people who have recovered from the coronavirus that will exempt them from adhering to quarantines or other restrictions.


  • China will allocate more resources to prevent the spread of the virus from its land borders, as the country still faces risks of a comeback after new clusters are identified in some regions.
  • The total number of infections in Japan hit more than 5,300 on Thursday, showing no signs of slowing despite a state of emergency being imposed on Tokyo and six other areas.
  • India claimed initial success in its fight against the epidemic, saying it would have been hit with 820,000 cases by next week had it not imposed a nationwide lockdown.
  • Vietnam said more than 1,000 healthcare workers and 14,400 others linked to an outbreak at a Hanoi hospital have tested negative. * Singapore confirmed 287 new infections on Thursday, its biggest daily increase yet, with more than 200 of them linked to outbreaks in dormitories for foreign workers.
  • Indonesia reported its biggest daily jump in deaths on Thursday, while neighbouring Malaysia had its second-lowest daily increase since a partial lockdown was imposed on March 18.
  • Australian police said they have taken the “black box” of a cruise ship which disembarked hundreds of infected passengers in Sydney, as part of a homicide investigation into the country’s deadliest infection source.


  •  South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa extended a lockdown by two weeks to the end of April.
  • A South African public sector union withdrew a court case against the government over shortages of protective gear for frontline health workers.
  • All Botswana’s parliamentarians including the president will be quarantined for two weeks and tested, after a health worker screening lawmakers for the virus tested positive.
  • Lebanon extended its almost month-long shutdown by another two weeks until April 26.
  • Political and physical divisions in the West Bank and Gaza have induced two very different responses, with a strict lockdown in the first and crowds milling about freely in the second.


  • Global stocks moved higher on Thursday following signs of some success by governments and central banks which have taken additional steps to bolster their economies during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The pandemic will turn global economic growth “sharply negative” in 2020, triggering the worst fallout since the 1930s Great Depression, with only a partial recovery seen in 2021, the head of the International Monetary Fund said.
  • A partisan skirmish in the U.S. Senate cut short a Republican effort to speed $250 billion in new small business assistance.
  • The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits in the last three weeks has blown past 15 million, with weekly new claims topping 6 million for the second straight time.
  • The U.S. Federal Reserve rolled out a broad, $2.3 trillion effort to bolster local governments and small and mid-sized businesses.
  • The White House is expected to announce soon formation of a second coronavirus task force, this one devoted to getting the economy going again when the time is right.
  • Prospects for a European Union deal on a package to support its coronavirus-battered economies brightened as Germany put its foot down to end opposition from the Netherlands and to reassure Italy that the EU would show it solidarity.
  • The Bank of England has agreed temporarily to finance government borrowing if funds cannot immediately be raised from debt markets.
  • The French government more than doubled the expected cost of its coronavirus crisis measures, pushing the budget deficit and national debt to record levels.

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