COVID-19 | Top 10 global developments this Friday morning

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With the total number of global cases breaching the 51 lakh mark and the death toll beyond the 3.3 lakh mark, the world has witnessed some fast-paced changes in relation to COVID-19.

Here are the top 10 global developments this Friday morning-

1. The total number confirmed COVID-19 cases across the world now stands at 5,101,967 while the death toll stands at 332,900 according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker. On a more positive note, 1,948,686 people have already recovered from the deadly virus.

2. The United States reported 1,255 COVID-19 deaths in the last 24 hours. The death toll now stands at 94,702 with the total confirmed cases at 1,577,147.

3. US President Donald Trump announced on Thursday (local time) that American flags on all the federal buildings will be lowered to half-staff over the next three days in memory of the citizens who lost their lives due to COVID-19.

4. US Senator Ted Cruz introduces 3 bills to punish China over censorship amid pandemic. He announced that he introduced three bills to counter Chinese propaganda and hold China accountable for what he described as medical and political censorship that helped fuel the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

One legislation, if adopted, will sanction Chinese officials involved in the suppression of medical experts, journalists, and political dissidents.
The second one calls to cut off Hollywood studios from the federal government assistance if they censor films for screening in China.
The third bill seeks to prevent the Chinese Communist Party from exploiting loopholes ‘to propagandize to Americans from radio stations in Mexico or Canada.’

5. The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits in the two months since the coronavirus created havoc in the US has risen to nearly 39 million, as per the US government, even as states from coast to coast gradually reopen their economies and let people go back to work.

6. UK signs contracts for 10 million antibody tests; Britain is set to buy 10 million coronavirus antibody tests from Roche and Abbott and will roll them out to health workers from next week, health minister Matt Hancock has said.

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7. Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro will sign off a $10.72 billion federal aid programme for states and cities hit by coronavirus, but he asked governors for support freezing public sector pay increases.

8. The number of coronavirus deaths registered in France over the last 24 hours dipped to 83, as a top doctor said he was not seeing a second wave of infections despite the country easing its lockdown.

9. Spain’s daily death toll from the coronavirus has fallen below 50 for the first time since a lockdown was imposed in mid-March, but the figure excludes deaths in the northeastern region of Catalonia.

10. Facebook Inc will permanently embrace remote work even after coronavirus lockdowns ease, Mark Zuckerberg told employees, accelerating the tech sector’s geographic diversification away from its home in Silicon Valley.

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