On Thursday the number of confirmed coronavirus cases across the globe reached one million, according to tracking by Johns Hopkins University. There have been 51,485 reported deaths from the virus so far, including thousands in the United States, China, Iran and large numbers in such European countries as Italy, Spain, France and the United Kingdom. Roughly half of the world’s population has been in some kind of lockdown or settle-in-place order to limit movement and the spread of the pandemic, including all of India’s 1.3 billion people.
Germany’s coronavirus infections have risen to 79,696, with 1,017 deaths, statistics from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Friday. Cases rose 6,174 from the previous day, while the death toll climbed by 145, the tally showed.
– A University of Calgary researcher earlier identified Russia as the main source of disinformation about the COVID-19 virus aimed at undermining faith in Western governments. On this, Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said: “We stand united against a common enemy which is invisible and knows no borders. And we need to also stand ready to respond to the disinformation campaigns that we’re seeing around the world.”
– Louisiana is poised to become the next epicenter of the coronavirus crisis, White House officials said Thursday, citing new data that shows that 26 per cent of the tests for COVID-19 in that state in recent days have come back positive.
That is the second-highest rate of infection in the United States, behind New York and New Jersey, where 35 percent of coronavirus tests have been positive.
– On the heels of a memo from House Democrats warning that it could be five months before some Americans receive their stimulus check, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters in a press briefing that it will be available in two weeks. “Quickly, as a matter of weeks and not months,” Mnuchin said. The Treasury Department, in an interview with USA Today, echoed his statement saying that an estimated 50 million to 70 million Americans would get the money — up to $1200 — directly into their bank accounts by April 15.