See the most important recent developments in the coronavirus pandemic


Below are the most important recent developments in the coronavirus pandemic.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases globally has passed 1.2 million, according to Johns Hopkins University figures. Just over one in four of these is in the US, which has 312,237 cases. There have been 64,784 coronavirus-related deaths worldwide.

Mainland China reported 30 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, up from 19 a day earlier as the number of cases involving travellers from abroad as well as local transmissions increased. It also reported 47 new asymptomatic cases.

Donald Trump has warned that the next two weeks will be the “toughest” in the US’s efforts to tackle coronavirus, and said he would be deploying thousands of military personnel to states to support them.

Trump also touted hydroxychloroquine as a cure for Covid-19. The anti-malaria drug could be ‘one of the biggest game-changers in the history of medicine’, Trump claimed during the briefing but there is no magic cure.

Trump’s pick for a new watchdog to oversee the $2 trillion support package, issued to combat the economic fallout of coronavirus, is not independent enough, congressional Democrats have said.

New York’s death toll has exceeded 3,000, almost a quarter of the US total, and Andrew Cuomo thanks China for ventilators as the state prepares for its coronavirus peak. The New York governor announced the state obtained 1,000 ventilators from billionaires Joseph and Clara Tsai and Alibaba founder Jack Ma.

Greece has quarantined a second migrant facility this week after a 53-year-old man at the Malakasa camp tested positive for coronavirus.

In Australia, there will be a criminal investigation into the Ruby Princess debacle. On 19 March, 2,700 passengers were allowed to disembark the Ruby Princess cruise ship in Sydney and make their own way home, despite, according to reports, authorities knowing about the widespread respiratory sickness on board.

New Zealand passed 1,000 cases. The country has 89 new coronavirus cases as of Sunday, according to Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield, bringing the total to 1039.

Spain’s number of infections has overtaken those in Italy, making the country the second-worst affected after the US. Spain has 124,870 confirmed cases and Italy 124,632.

Deaths in Italy have passed 15,000. The country has lost 15,362 people to the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University figures.

Australia’s home affairs minister, Peter Dutton, urged people to be wary of dodgy ‘home’ Covid-19 test kits that could pose a serious risk to public health, AAP reports.

Ecuador’s government has begun storing the bodies of victims of the coronavirus in giant refrigerated containers as hundreds of deaths in the city of Guayaquil, the centre of the country’s outbreak, have already filled morgues and hospitals.

Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox church has decided to suspend prayers preceding Easter celebrations later this month as part of efforts to stem the spread of coronavirus, AFP reports.

A senior health official in Iran has warned that the Iranian capital could see a resurgence of coronavirus cases, after residents in Tehran flouted restrictions.