BFF-52 Italy reports 651 new virus death, toll nears 5,500

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HEALTH-VIRUS-ITALY-TOLL

Italy reports 651 new virus death, toll nears 5,500

ROME, March 22, 2020 (BSS/AFP) – Italy’s world-topping toll from the
coronavirus pandemic approached 5,500 on Sunday after the Mediterranean
country reported another 651 deaths.

The latest daily toll was smaller than Saturday’s record 793 fatalities but
still the second-highest registered during Italy’s month-long crisis.

The number of new infections rose by 10.4 percent to 59,138.

Italy’s death toll now stands at 5,476.

“The figures announced today are lower than those for yesterday,” Italian
civil protection service chief Angelo Borrelli told reporters.

“I hope and we all hope that these figures can be borne out in the coming
days. But do not let your guard down.”

Sunday’s figures suggest that strict containment measures imposed around
the northern epicentre of the crisis near Milan on March 8 might be starting
to bear fruit.

Milan’s Lombardy region reported just 30.4 percent of the new infections on
Sunday.

It had been reporting about two-thirds of Italy’s coronavirus deaths
throughout the month-long crisis.

The region of 10 million officially registered 55.5 percent of Sunday’s
COVID-19 deaths.

BSS/AFP/FI/ 1140 hrs