More than 3.11 million people have been reported to be infected by the novel coronavirus globally and 216,667 have died, according to a Reuters tally as of 0200 GMT on Wednesday.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
* For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread, opentmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7in an external browser.
* For a U.S.-focused tracker with state-by-state and county map, opentmsnrt.rs/2w7hX9Tin an external browser.
* Britain’s death toll is probably above 27,241, making it one of the worst-hit countries in Europe, the opposition Labour Party leader said.
* Spain recorded 325 deaths overnight, against 301 the previous day, but health officials said the epidemic was evolving favourably ahead of a gradual easing of its lockdown next week.
* Germany warned foreign travel would not be risk-free even if restrictions were lifted, and it hopes to discuss a coordinated solution with European Union partners.
* German health minister announced measures, including ramped-up purchases of flu vaccines, to bolster the healthcare system.
* Russia’s confirmed cases neared 100,000 on Wednesday after 5,841 new cases were registered overnight along with a record daily rise in the death toll.
* The total confirmed cases in Sweden topped 20,000 on Wednesday.
* Polish hotels and shopping malls will reopen on May 4 and pre-schools can open on May 6.
* Several hundred businessmen, many wearing face masks, staged a protest called for an easing of Ukraine’s lockdown.
* Greece hopes to welcome back tourists from July, but hoteliers expect a bleak season.
* More than 1.01 million people have been infected in the United States and 58,605 have died, according to a Reuters tally as of 0200 GMT on Wednesday.
* President Donald Trump ordered meat-processing plants to stay open to protect the food supply, and said the country was considering testing passengers on international flights from hot spots.
* At least five of Mexico City’s largest private hospitals have filled up with COVID-19 patients and have no room for more.
* China said its parliament will open a key annual session on May 22, signalling that Beijing sees the country returning to normal.
* Mainland China reported 22 new cases for April 28, against 6 a day earlier, bringing total infections to 82,858.
* Japan’s prime minister said the Tokyo Olympics could not take place next year unless the pandemic is contained, as the city governor requested an extension of Japan’s state of emergency.
* Indonesia confirmed 260 new infections on Wednesday, taking its total to 9,771, while deaths rose by 11 to 784.
* The Philippines’ tally of confirmed cases rose to more than 8,000.
* Australia’s prime minister said bans on international travel and large gatherings would continue even as the government eases lockdowns and moves towards a “COVID-safe” economy and society.
* Azerbaijan will keep borders closed until May 31.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Tunisia starts relaxing its lockdown next week, reopening parts of the food and construction sectors and allowing half of government employees to return to work.
* Turkey extended the closure of schools until the end of May.
* Iran’s death toll rose by 80 in the past 24 hours to 5,957.
* Rioting broke out at the central prison in Sierra Leone’s capital Freetown following confirmation of a coronavirus case there.
* Uganda stepped up restrictions on trucks transiting its territory, limiting them to one driver and banning them from stopping over in hotels.
* World shares made slim gains on Wednesday, with optimism over economies easing lockdowns and rebounding oil prices leavened by a mixed picture on corporate earnings. [MKTS/GLOB]
* The Federal Reserve, which has pumped trillions in emergency funding into U.S. financial markets, is expected on Wednesday to reiterate its promise to do whatever it takes to support the world’s largest economy.
* Eurozone economic sentiment suffered its steepest ever decline in April as lockdowns halted much economic activity.
* Germany slashed its economic growth forecast for this year, predicting the pandemic would plunge Europe’s largest economy into its deepest recession since World War Two.
* China will roll out measures including tax, credit and foreign trade policies to support economic development in Hubei province.