Pandemic “far from over”, warns WHO

The COVID-19 pandemic, which has just crossed two symbolic thresholds – – more than half a million dead and ten million cases – “is far from over” and even “accelerates”, warned on Monday the World Health Organization, calling on the world to mobilize without waiting for a vaccine.

“We all want it all to end. We all want to take back our lives. But the harsh reality is that it is far from over, “warned WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. The pandemic is “accelerating” now, he noted.

The virus continues to wreak havoc in the United States and appears to be restarting in China, and in a “divided world” and facing “a lack of national unity and global solidarity […] The worse is yet to come “.

WHO will send a team “next week” to China, where the coronavirus appeared in December, to determine its origin. “We hope this will help us understand how the virus started and what we can do in the future to prepare for it,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

He called on governments and citizens to put in place “simple solutions” in order to “save lives now”: “test, trace, isolate, and quarantine cases”.

In data | Our interactive content on COVID-19

Deconfinement on pause

According to a count by the AFP from official sources, but which experts believe largely underestimated, 502,599 deaths and 10,208,540 cases were officially listed on Monday at 7:00 p.m. GMT.

The number of deaths worldwide has doubled in just under two months (250,000 on May 5) and an additional 50,000 have been recorded in the past ten days.

Europe is the continent with the most deaths (196,428 for 2,660,794 cases), followed by the United States / Canada zone (134,538, 2,667,981), Latin America and the Caribbean (112,321, 2,491,030), Asia (33,689, 1,251,153), the Middle East (15,819, 743,172), Africa (9,671, 385,166) and Oceania (133, 9,244).

The United States is the country most affected, both in number of deaths (126,123) and cases (2,587,154). Although the number of daily deaths decreased slightly in June compared to the previous month, contagion is increasing in 30 of the 50 states, particularly in the largest and most populous (California, Texas, Florida).

Some had to take a break from the deconfinement process. The governor of California, for example, on Sunday ordered bars in Los Angeles and six other counties closed after a rebound in cases. This measure potentially affects 13.5 million inhabitants.

Los Angeles County, the main source of COVID-19 in California, announced on Monday that it will temporarily close its beaches next weekend, a statutory holiday in the United States, to stem a spate of contamination.

More and more voices, especially among Republicans and in particular the powerful Senate leader Mitch McConnell, are rising so that President Donald Trump, who has never appeared masked in public, does so in order to set an example .

Uncertainty hangs over the economy a few months before the presidential election: US Central Bank chief Jerome Powell deemed the pace of the current recovery “extremely uncertain” because of the virus.

Rooseveltian Plan

In the United Kingdom, the government announced on Monday evening the tightening of containment in Leicester due to an outbreak in this city in central England, the first to be subject to local restrictions.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson to announce five billion pounds (5.4 billion euros) of investment in infrastructure projects on Tuesday, drawing inspiration from US President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “New Deal” in the 1930s .

“We are going to build, build, build. Rebuild better, rebuild greener, rebuild faster, “he said to Dudley (center), according to extracts from his speech broadcast by his services.

The return to normal in many countries does not offset the impact of the pandemic on economic activities.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron urged European countries, particularly the “frugal”, on Monday to reach an agreement on the revival of the European Union at the July European summit.

“We are facing economic challenges that we have never known in decades, and probably in all history,” launched the Chancellor, at the dawn of a German presidency of the EU which decisive announcement.

“We hope that we will find a solution” from the European Council of 17 and 18 July, which will concern the adoption of the recovery plan of 750 billion euros proposed by the European Commission, “even if there is still a long way to go “, She argued.

“I’m wearing a mask”

Cradle of the pandemic in Wuhan, in the center of the country, China believed to be finished with the virus but it reappeared in mid-June in Beijing, to the point that the authorities closed schools and placed in containment several thousand of people.

According to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, his country is preparing for a second wave “which could strike very hard”. Quebec has more than half of the 103,000 cases of coronavirus and 8,600 deaths in the country.

In contrast, South Korea continues to return to normal. She managed to control the situation thanks to a very advanced strategy of testing and tracing the contacts of infected people, without even imposing confinement.

Elsewhere in the world, the situation is mixed.

Mandatory mask in certain public places and green light to reinstate restrictive measures: the Iranian government has decreed the remobilization. He announced 162 more deaths in 24 hours on Monday, the highest daily toll since the outbreak began in February.

“I wear a mask”: despite a public health campaign to encourage Iranians to go out covered, only “50% of metro passengers wear masks” and “even less on the buses,” deplored the mayor of Tehran Pirouz Hanachi.

In Latin America, the most heavily affected country is Brazil, which on Monday recorded 58,314 deaths out of 1,368,195 confirmed cases, according to the authorities.

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