The death toll from the Covid-19 continues its rise in the world. Here are the latest updates.
The coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the world, as Italy announced Sunday 651 dead, bringing its total number of victims to 5,476. The country's prime minister took new measures to step up his response to the outbreak, including the suspension of all production activities.
In South America, as the number of confirmed cases is on the rise, Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro continues to downplay the emergency, accusing the other countries' governments of "exaggerating" and endangering the economy.
Here are the latest updates:
Update 08:18 pm
El Salvador's President presents economic measures amid coronavirus crisis
President of El Salvador Nayib Bukele announced Sunday a series of economic measures to help the country's people cope with the crisis sparked by the coronavirus pandemic.
The measures include payments for public services and utilities, consumer credits, credit card payments, mortgages, and rent suspended for three months.
Those three months will be divided without interest in a minimum of two years up to the amount of time of the credit.
Update 04:00 pm
Death toll in France reaches 674
Victims of coronavirus pandemic in France now number 674 people, top French health official said Sunday.
"The virus kills and it is continuing to kill," said Jerome Salomon as he announced the new numbers at a daily briefing.
Syrian Ministry of health confirms first coronavirus case
Syria's health ministry confirmed the country's first coronavirus case, adding the "necessary measures" had been taken, state media reported.
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte halts production activities
Italy’s Giuseppe Conte decreed Sunday new measures in an effort to tackle the ever-growing number of coronavirus cases, including the suspension of all Industrial and commercial activities starting tomorrow until April 3.
Germany's Merkel in quarantine
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will go into quarantine after she received Friday a vaccine shot against pneumococcus, a pneumonia-causing bacteria, from a doctor who then tested positive for the coronavirus.
Merkel will continue to work from home and will undergo tests over the next days, her spokesman said.
Brazil's Bolsonaro continue to minimize the pandemic as coronavirus cases passes 1,500
Contradicting his minister of health, Brazil's far-right President Jair Bolsonaro denied the country's healthcare system will collapse next month, while the number of confirmed cases reached 1,546.
Bolsonaro said the health minister Luiz Henrique Mandetta "was exaggerating," when the latter warned Thursday that the country’s weak healthcare system faces a collapse before the end of April.
The president said "collapse" was the wrong word. "What we're doing is lengthening the infection curve. I don't believe in a collapse," he said in an interview with CNN.
Saudi Arabia reports more than 500 coronavirus cases
Saudi health ministry said Sunday the country recorded 119 new cases bringing the total number of infected people in the kingdom to 511.
Update 01:05 pm
United States senator Rand Paul tested positive for COVID-19
Republican senator of Kentucky Rand Paul became Sunday the first senator in the United States to be tested positive for the coronavirus.
Paul posted on Twitter that he had no symptoms and was unaware of direct contact with any infected person.
Senator Rand Paul has tested positive for COVID-19. He is feeling fine and is in quarantine. He is asymptomatic and was tested out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events. He was not aware of any direct contact with any infected person.— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) March 22, 2020
Update 12:23 pm
651 deaths in Italy bring the death toll to 5,476 people
The coronavirus outbreak claimed Sunday 651 more lives in Italy, the figure representing an increase of 13.5 percent, according to officials.
The total number of cases in the second most affected country in the world rose by 10.4 percent, bringing the number of those infected by the virus to 59,138, the country’s Protection Agency said. The figure is, however, the lowest rise in percentage since Feb. 21 when the contagion appeared.