Key developments in the global coronavirus outbreak today include:
At least 4.3m known to have been infected
Researchers say at least 4,308,055 cases have been confirmed worldwide, while at least 293,514 people have died. The figures collected by Johns Hopkins University are likely to be a great underestimate of the true scale of the epidemic.
Every African country now affected
Lesotho, the last country in Africa left unaffected by the pandemic, announced its first case. The virus was detected in one of 81 people tested after arriving last week from Saudi Arabia and neighbouring South Africa, Lesotho’s health ministry said.
The country went into lockdown on 29 March to protect itself from the potential spread of the virus from South Africa, which entirely surrounds the kingdom and has the highest number of confirmed cases on the continent.
98-year-old woman recovers from coronavirus in Lagos
A 98-year-old has recovered from coronavirus after receiving treatment at one of Lagos state’s isolation centres, authorities there say.
State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu announced on Wednesday that the woman was discharged along with 25 others who had previously tested positive to the virus.
Afghanistan reaches 5,000 confirmed cases
The number of confirmed cases in Afghanistan passed 5,000 as the country’s health ministry warned that easing lockdowns would bring a “catastrophe”.
Out of 619 suspected patients tested in the last 24 hours, 259 came back positive, pushing the total number of infections to 5,226. The death toll reached 132, after five more patients died overnight. The number of recoveries stood at 648.
Sweden seeks thousands more care workers
Sweden’s public health authority reported 147 more deaths, as the government announced plans to hire up to 10,000 more nursing assistants and care workers to address shortcomings in elderly care exposed by the pandemic.
About half of the 3,460 coronavirus-related deaths reported in Sweden have been among nursing home residents, and another quarter among those receiving care at home.
Mexico to reopen parts of economy
Some Mexican townships will be allowed to resume business and school activities if they have no recorded cases, the country’s economy secretary, Graciela Márquez, has said.
The move, which comes after 51 days of lockdown, is being undertaken despite the country reporting its highest number of daily deaths so far. Mexico has confirmed 1,992 new cases and 353 deaths, bringing the total death toll to 3,926 and the total number of cases to 38,324.
Europe’s hotels asked to enforce social distancing
Hotels and restaurants across Europe have been asked to enforce social-distancing between guests to allow Europeans to take their annual summer holiday.
Announcing a set of measures intended to rescue Europe’s crisis-hit tourism industry, the European Union executive called for a “gradual and careful easing of lockdown restrictions across the continent”, while issuing advice to hotels, resort managers, restaurant owners and travel companies.
Ford factories to resume production
The car manufacturer Ford announced plans to restart production, including at two factories in the UK.
Work will resume on 18 May at the company’s engine plants in Dagenham in Essex and Bridgend in South Wales. The move, along with the reopening of the Valencia engine plant in Spain, will mean that all of Ford’s European manufacturing facilities will be back in operation.