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Coronavirus latest: Bolsonaro’s health under spotlight

  • July 07, 2020
  • Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has been tested for COVID-19
  • UN chief warns that extremist groups could benefit from the pandemic
  • Israel reimposes several coronavirus restrictions after cases spiked
  • Over 11.5 million people have contracted the virus worldwide, with over 535,000 deaths

All updates in Universal Coordinated Time (UTC/GMT)

04:55 Germany’s public health agency, the Robert Koch Institute, has reported 390 new coronavirus cases over the past 24 hours, bringing the country’s total to 196,944 since the pandemic began. 

The reported death toll rose by 8 to 9,024, the figures showed.

03:35 Achieving nationwide “herd immunity” to coronavirus in Spain is a long way off, according to a large-scale medical study published on Monday.

Just 5% of the over 61,000 participants developed antibodies that would be able to fight the disease, found the study that was published in the Lancet Journal.

“At present, herd immunity is difficult to achieve without accepting the collateral damage of many deaths in the susceptible population and overburdening of health systems,” researchers said.

Herd immunity occurs when a large proportion of a community becomes infected then builds up resistance to the disease. This means the virus is unable to spread easily within the group.

Spain was “very far” from achieving a 60% rate of infection within the community — the percentage that some experts think is needed to stop COVID-19 spreading, reported news agency dpa citing study author Marina Pollan.

The study also found that around one-third of participants who had contracted the virus remained asymptomatic, which the authors say has “important public health implications.”

The researchers advised that social distancing remained the best way to combat the pandemic.

00:48 The annual fall meetings for the World Bank and International Monetary Fund will be held online this year due to the pandemic, World Bank President David Malpass has announced. The meetings are scheduled for October. 

Both finance institutions held their spring meetings online this year and are looking to move more interactions to virtual platforms rather than in person in Washington DC, where both headquarters are located.

00:10 Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has been tested for COVID-19 after having a lung X-ray on Monday.

Bolsonaro, while addressing supporters outside the presidential palace on Monday, said he was feeling well. The results of the COVID-19 test are expected on Tuesday, according to Bolsonaro in an interview with CNN Brazil. 

The Brazilian president has repeatedly downplayed the virus and often refused to wear face masks, despite the country suffering one of the worst outbreaks worldwide, with over 1,623,200 COVID-19 cases and more than 65,000 deaths. 

Bolsonaro previously tested negative for the coronavirus earlier this year after several aides were diagnosed following a visit to US President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in March.

00:01 The coronavirus pandemic could provide new opportunities for the “Islamic State” (IS) militant group, al-Qaida and their affiliates, United Nations chief Antonio Guterres has warned. Neo-Nazis, white supremacists and hate groups could also benefit from the pandemic, he said. 

While it was too early to assess the full implications of the pandemic on terrorism, all these groups were seeking to exploit divisions, local conflicts, failures in governing, and other grievances to advance their aims, said the UN secretary-general.

Guterres said IS was trying to reassert itself in both Syria and Iraq, where it once held large amounts of territory.

00:00 Catch up on yesterday’s coronavirus news here: Coronavirus latest: Louvre reopens, Swiss make masks mandatory on public transport

In reporting on the coronavirus pandemic, unless otherwise specified, DW uses figures provided by the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) Coronavirus Resource Center in the United States. JHU updates figures in real-time, collating data from world health organizations, state and national governments, and other public official sources, all of whom have their own systems for compiling information.

Germany’s national statistics are compiled by its public health agency, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). These figures depend on data transmission from state and local levels and are updated around once a day, which can lead to deviation from JHU.

kmm/ stb (Reuters, AP, AFP, dpa)


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