Coronavirus: Latest on COVID-19 from around the world - Monday, June 1

Coronavirus: Latest on COVID-19 from around the world - Monday, June 1
Photo credit: Getty

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

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


United States

Protests in New York have sparked fears of a potential COVID-19 spike, just as the city begins to see declining case numbers. 

Dr Theodore Long, who is leading New York City's contact tracing efforts with its public hospitals agency, urged anyone who had been involved in the demonstrations to get tested for the virus.

As reported by the New York Times, Dr Ashish Jha, a professor of global health at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, has encouraged protesters to take safety precautions, including wearing face masks and practicing social distancing.

Speaking to CNN, Atlanta's mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, expressed concern that the protests could increase infection rates in communities of colour - already disproportionately hit by the disease. Death rates among African-Americans are double those of Caucasians, with the economic toll of the lockdown measures also inflicting disproportionate economic pain.

"I'm extremely concerned we are seeing mass gatherings," Bottoms told the news agency. 


Brazil registered a record 33,274 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, its health ministry said, raising its total to 498,440. The country has one of the world's worst outbreaks of the virus, second only to the United States and followed by Russia.

Brazil's virus-related death toll has increased to 28,834, with 956 new deaths being recorded in the last 24 hours, the ministry said.

These figures remain the same as of Sunday afternoon (local time), according to Johns Hopkins University's live COVID-19 case tracker.


South Korea

South Korea has 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 (local time), 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 shutdowns.

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


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.

Middle East

Saudi Arabia

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.


Abu Dhabi, the largest member of the United Arab Emirates federation, has announced a one-week ban on traffic to and between its main cities starting on June 2, the local government media office says.

The restrictions, which aim to check the spread of the coronavirus, include a ban on entering and exiting the emirate of Abu Dhabi as a whole, it said on Twitter.


United Kingdom

British foreign minister Dominic Raab has defended the government's loosening of lockdown measures, saying it is the "right step to be taking" at this time.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has faced backlash for easing lockdown restrictions implemented 10 weeks ago, with several saying the move is premature and risky in the absence of a fully-functioning system to track new outbreaks.

Despite Britain having one of the world's highest death rates from COVID-19, the government says it is easing the stringent shutdowns cautiously to restart the economy, while also trying to prevent another increase in infections.

"We are confident that this is the right step to be taking at this moment in time," Raab told Sky News. "We are taking those steps very carefully, based on the science but also based on our ability now to monitor the virus."

From Monday (local time), up to six people will be able to meet outside in England. Some school classes will restart, elite competitive sport will resume without spectators and more than 2 million people who have been "shielding" will be allowed to spend time outdoors.

England's deputy chief medical officer, Jenny Harries, emphasised the need for people to remain on their guard.

"This is a really, really critical time. So where we are seeing (that) government is easing measures, the public really, really need to stick to those measures," she told a news conference.


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.

The agency said that outbreaks of the virus in care homes are one reason that Sweden, a country of 10.3 million, has recorded so many deaths.

It remains unclear why the infection spread to so many care homes for the elderly, especially in Stockholm and the surrounding areas.


Italy has registered 355 new cases and 75 deaths, some of its lowest 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.

The Leaning Tower of Pisa, one of Italy's most popular tourist sights, has also reopened after three months of lockdown. A flash mob was held to commemorate those who have died of the virus and to  attract visitors to the site.

The Colosseum and Vatican Museums are due to reopen their doors on Monday, while in Florence, the Uffizi museum and Galleria dell'Accademia, home to Michaelangelo's David, are likewise set to welcome visitors again.


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. 

City authorities said that everyone who had come into contact with the 35 would be tested for COVID-19, irrespective of whether or not they are showing symptoms. They said that they were now looking for 140 to 200 people who had contact in the first degree with those infected.


COVID-19 cases in France are continuing to decline, health officials say, with 14,322 patients currently in hospital - down from 14,380 a day earlier.

The number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care fell to 1319 from 1361, although the hospital death toll from the virus rose by 31 to 18,475 - the 11th consecutive daily increase below 100.


Greece has announced an aggressive reopening plan to bolster its tourism sector. After originally declaring it would allow flights from 29 countries with largely controlled outbreaks, officials have now said flights from around the world will be permitted to enter.

On Saturday (local time), the Greek foreign ministry said flights will go to its two largest airports from June 15 to June 30, with passengers from the initial 29-nation list being subject to random testing. Those flying in from countries deemed by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency to have a high risk of virus transmission will be tested.

All Greek airports will reopen to international flights as of July 1, with random screening for all passengers. 

Reuters / Newshub.