June 16, 2020
The global struggle to contain the Covid-19 pandemic appeared to be far from over as the number of casualties continues to surge in South America and several other parts of the world.
The death toll in Latin America and the Caribbean has now passed 80,000, with the majority being in Brazil, which now is the second worst hit after the United States.
The grim statistics have been accompanied by bleak economic news such as Peru reporting that its economy had shrank by more than 40 per cent year-on-year in April.
The situation appeared to be equally worrying in Iran, India and Saudi Arabia which continued to report increasing Covid-19 deaths and infections.
Iran yesterday warned that it may have to reimpose tough measures to ensure social distancing after reporting more than 100 deaths for a second straight day.
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia reported that its death toll has topped 1,000 amid a new rise in cases, which dose not bode well for the coming annual hajj pilgrimage which was supposed to start a few weeks from now.
In India, authorities has reimposed lockdown on 15 million people in Chennai as the number of Covid-19 cases surged there.
It was reported that morgues in the capital, Delhi are overflowing as the rise in infections in the country of 1.2 billion people highlighted its poor healthcare system.
Fears of a second wave of the pandemic was also fueled by news that China, which is the first country to be hit by Covid-19 is again battling a new outbreak with parts of Beijing already being put under lockdown.
Chinese authorities today reported another 27 domestically transmitted cases in the capital, bringing the number of infections over the last five days to 106.
The situation in United States was mixed as it recorded 385 deaths yesterday, its lowest daily death toll since March.
It was the second consecutive day the US toll came in below 400 but some states have reported new flare-ups of cases.
Cases have also declined recently in most European countries prompting several such as Spain, Belgium, France, Germany and Greece to lift border restrictions among themselves yesterday.
The reopening of borders was crucial for the governments as they struggled to repair the extensive economic damage wrought by the movement restrictions imposed to contain the pandemic.
In Britain, many shops and outdoor establishments yesterday welcomed their first customers since March.
The country, which is the worst hit in Europe had its economy shrank by one-fifth in April due to the pandemic.