As of Friday, South Africa has recorded a total number of 712,412 positive cases of Covid-19, with 1,897 new cases reported since the last report, the health department has announced.
The country has recorded 48 new Covid-19 deaths, bringing the total number to 18,891. Of the 48 deaths reported today, 7 occurred in the past 48 hours.
“We extend our condolences to the loved ones of the departed and thank the healthcare workers who treated the deceased patients,” said the department.
Coronavirus: latest global developments
Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:
– ‘Serious concern’ over Europe –
The European Union’s disease control agency warns that transmission caplevels of Covid-19 in 23 member countries and the United Kingdom are now of “serious concern”.
All EU countries except Cyprus, Estonia, Finland and Greece fall into that category, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control’s (ECDC) latest assessment, up from only seven countries a month ago.
US vote battleground –
With 12 days to go to the tense US election, President Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger Joe Biden showdown over the coronavirus response in their second and final debate.
Biden says that in presiding over the nation as 220,000 Americans died from the coronavirus Trump “should not remain as president of the United States of America.”
Trump, who has just had his own brush with the virus, defends his push to reopen the United States as soon as possible, saying “It’s going away”.
– Spain: three million ‘real’ cases –
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez says the “real number” of coronavirus cases in Spain is more than three million.
Earlier this week, Spain became the first in Europe to officially surpass one million confirmed Covid-19 infections but Sanchez said the actual figure was much higher because the number of cases detected at the start of the pandemic was very low.
– France faces ‘worse’ second wave –
As France expands a 9:00 pm to 06:00 am curfew to cover more than two-thirds of its population, the boss of Paris public hospital group AP-HP Martin Hirsch says its second wave of coronavirus could be “worse than the first”.
As France meets soaring infection and hospital admission rates with curfews, Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire also warns its recession-bruised economy could shrink again in the final three months of 2020.
– More than 1.1 million dead –
The virus has claimed at least 1,139,406 lives worldwide since it first emerged in China late last year, according to an AFP tally at 1100 GMT on Friday, based on official sources.
At least 41,767,540 cases have been registered across the globe.
The United States is the worst-affected country with 223,059 deaths, followed by Brazil with 155,900, India with 117,306, Mexico with 87,894 and Britain with 44,347.
– UK in lockdown –
Ten million people head into coronavirus lockdowns in the United Kingdom.
The government imposes its most stringent measures on the northwestern city of Manchester and its surrounding region. The English county of South Yorkshire will also face the same “very high” alert from Saturday.
– PLO stricken –
Two more senior Palestinian officials test positive for the novel coronavirus as veteran chief negotiator Saeb Erekat fights for his life in an Israeli hospital.
Palestine Liberation Organization central committee member Azzam al-Ahmad tells AFP he and social development minister Ahmed Majdalani have both joined the growing list of Palestinian officials who have contracted the virus.
– Czech health minister in trouble –
Czech health minister Roman Prymula comes under fire from social media users after being photographed leaving a restaurant that should have been closed under his own anti-virus restrictions.
An epidemiologist who has been in office since September, Prymula also failed to wear a face mask when he got in his car with a driver, the Blesk daily tabloid reports.
– Eiffel tower visitor numbers plunge –
The Eiffel Tower, one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions, has seen vistor numbers fall by 80 percent compared to 2019, according to the operator, SETE.
As foreign tourists stay away and tight coronavirus measures, including a curfew, take their toll, its revenues have also fallen by 70 percent.
For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.