Global COVID-19 updates in summary


The number of officially confirmed cases of coronavirus around the world has passed 6.3 million. According to researchers from Johns Hopkins University, 6,309,107 people are known to have been infected, while 376,445 are known to have died since the outbreak began.

Hopes were raised of the possible availability of a vaccine. A senior US army researcher said it was reasonable to expect that some sort of vaccine could be available to some parts of the US population by the end of the year.

France’s death toll rose by more than a 100 in a 24-hour period for the first time in 13 days. It came as the country enacts a new easing of lockdown measures.

Iran confirmed its second highest number of new cases in a 24-hour period since its outbreak began, with the health ministry saying 3,117 people tested positive. The number of new daily infections in Iran has now returned to levels previously seen at the peak of its outbreak in late March.

Germany’s travel warning for Europe will be lifted on Wednesday, its foreign minister, Heiko Maas, announced. The worldwide travel warning still applies. But, for the countries of the EU and associated states, the warning will be replaced by travel advice that will give travellers detailed information about the situation in each state.

The pandemic is exposing “endemic inequalities” that must be addressed, according to the UN human rights chief, Michelle Bachelet, who highlighted the protests triggered by the killing of George Floyd and data showing the crisis has had a worse impact on ethnic minority groups.

The UK’s official death toll passed 50,000, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics. The total differs from the government’s daily counts, which only include deaths in hospitals and care homes where the person had tested positive.

The UK statistics watchdog criticised the government’s testing data. Whitehall’s use of testing data appears to be aimed more at making it look like a lot is being done than actually painting a clear picture, the chairman of the UK Statistics Authority warned the health secretary, Matt Hancock.

A Wuhan doctor who worked with the whistleblower Li Wenliang died of the virus last week, Chinese state media reported. Hu Weifeng, a urologist at Wuhan central hospital, reportedly became China’s first Covid-19 fatality in weeks when he died on Friday after being treated for more than four months.

Meanwhile, Chinese officials sat on releasing the genetic map of the coronavirus for more than a week after multiple government labs had fully decoded it, according to an Associated Press report.

The rise in unemployment slowed in Spain. The number of new jobseekers was close to 27,000 in May, about 10 times lower than in March and April during the country’s lockdown, the labour ministry said.