BFF-50 Coronavirus: latest global developments

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BFF-50

HEALTH-VIRUS-WORLD FACTS

Coronavirus: latest global developments

PARIS, June 16, 2020 (BSS/AFP) – Here are the latest developments in
the coronavirus crisis.

– Bad news from Beijing –

China reports 27 new infections in Beijing where a new cluster
linked to a wholesale food market has sparked fears of a second wave
and led to mass testing and neighbourhood lockdowns.

“The epidemic situation in the capital is extremely severe,” says
Beijing city spokesman Xu Hejian, with the number of confirmed
infections from the new outbreak hitting 106.

– Setback in New Zealand –

The South Pacific nation reports its first new cases in almost a
month when two recent arrivals from Britain test positive after being
released early from quarantine to visit a dying relative.

– ‘Major breakthrough’ –

But British researchers offer some better news, hailing a potential
“major breakthrough” with the steroid dexamethasone, which has been
found to save the lives of one-third of seriously ill patients in
clinical trials.

– More than 436,000 deaths –

The pandemic has killed at least 436,813 people worldwide since it
surfaced in China late last year, according to an AFP tally at 1100
GMT Tuesday, based on official sources.

The United States has the most deaths with 116,127, followed by
Brazil with 43,959, Britain with 41,736, Italy with 34,371 and France
with 29,436 fatalities.

– Hungary to end emergency powers –

Hungarian MPs vote to revoke anti-coronavirus emergency powers that
had triggered international criticism amid fears of a power grab by
Prime Minister Viktor Orban.

But several prominent government-critical NGOs warn in a joint
statement that the revocation is an “optical illusion” leaving the
authorities with enhanced powers.

– Premier League to return –

The English top flight football Premier League returns on Wednesday
after 100 days in the deep freeze.

Aston Villa will kick off against Sheffield United for the first
match, to be followed later in the day by Manchester City v Arsenal.

– Hard-hit service-dependent economies –

Countries that rely on services like tourism are suffering the
worst economic damage in the pandemic, IMF chief economist Gita
Gopinath says.

BSS/AFP/MRU/2135hrs