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Global coronavirus cases pass 6 million

World

More than 6.07 million people have been reported infected with the coronavirus globally and 368,539 have died, according to a Reuters tally.

 

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Infections have been reported in more than 210 countries and territories since the first cases were identified in China in December 2019.

South Korea reported 27 new cases of coronavirus, including 21 in the Seoul area where officials are scrambling to stem transmissions linked to club-goers and warehouse workers.

The figures announced by South Korea’s Centres for Disease Control and Prevention on Sunday brought the country’s totals to 11,468 cases and 270 deaths. Twelve of the new cases were international arrivals.

Chinese authorities have reported two new cases of COVID-19, bringing the country’s total to 83,001.

Both cases were imported and in the Shandong province south of Beijing, bringing the number of cases from abroad to 1740.

Meanwhile a German engineer who flew to China on a special charter flight on Saturday has tested positive. About 200 people arrived on the chartered Lufthansa A340 from Frankfurt. A second flight is scheduled to depart on Wednesday for Shanghai.

China has banned most foreigners from entering the country to prevent the introduction of new infections but agreed to allow the two German flights to bring back workers as it tries to revive economic growth after the coronavirus shutdowns.

No new domestic cases have been reported in China for a week. The country’s official death toll stands at 4634.

In Saudi Arabia, about 90,000 mosques reopened on Sunday for the first time in more than two months but worshippers have been ordered to follow strict guidelines and Islam’s holiest site in Mecca remains closed to the public.

The Ministry of Islamic Affairs said millions of text messages were sent to people in multiple languages to inform them about the new rules for public prayer, which include keeping two metres apart, wearing face masks at all times and abstaining from greeting one another with handshakes or hugs.

Children under 15 are not allowed inside mosques, while the elderly and those with chronic conditions are being told to pray at home.

In India, more than 8000 new cases have been reported in a single day, another record high that topped the deadliest week in the country.

The health ministry said on Sunday that confirmed infections have risen to 182,143, with 5164 fatalities – including 193 in the last 24 hours.

More than 60 per cent of the overall virus fatalities have been reported from only two states – Maharashtra, the financial hub, and Gujarat, the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The new cases are largely concentrated in six Indian states, including the capital New Delhi.

Authorities in the German city of Goettingen say 160 people have been placed under quarantine after several large events caused a new coronavirus outbreak.

Thirty-five people tested positive for COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the virus, after attending a series of private events banned under coronavirus-related restrictions. Of those, one person is in serious condition.

Sweden has not reported any coronavirus deaths in the last 24 hours, for the first time since March 11, the country’s health authority said on Sunday.

Italy registered 355 new coronavirus cases and 75 deaths, some of the lowest such numbers since the country’s lockdown against the pandemic began in early March.

The figures were released three days before authorities were due to lift restrictions banning travel for tourism between Italy’s regions.

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