Coronavirus updates: Lowest death toll for weeks in UK, Italy, and Spain

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Edited by Saira Asher

All times stated are UK

  1. Sex dolls cheer South Korea’s football league

    The K-League is one of the few football arenas where playing has resumed, albeit, in empty stadiums. To remedy that lack of a proper crowd, FC Seoul decided to put plastic fans into the stands for their clash against Gwangju FC on Sunday.

    But eagle-eyed social media users said the mannequins looked more like sex dolls.

    The club has since apologised in a statement but said the order it placed with its supplier was for “products for fashion companies”, i.e. not an “adult product”.

  2. New Zealand leader (briefly) turned away from cafe

    PM Jacinda Ardern and her partner, Clarke Gayford, went to a cafe in Wellington on Saturday, two days after her government lifted a nationwide lockdown.

    But the venue was at capacity due to distancing limits – a fact that
    was made public by a Twitter user, who wrote they had been “omg… rejected”.

    New Zealand restaurants can now seat a maximum of 100 customers, if groups are separated by at least a metre.

    The wait for Ms Ardern and Mr Gayford was only brief, local media reported.

    Mr Gayford later tweeted: “I have to take responsibility for this, I didn’t get organized
    and book anywhere. Was very nice of them to chase us down st when a spot
    freed up. A+ service.”

    Jacinda Ardern and Clarke Gayford

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Image caption: New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern with partner Clarke Gayford
  3. South Africa’s ban on cigarettes and alcohol

    South Africa implemented one of the world’s toughest lockdowns, even banning cigarettes and alcohol.

    But what’s the impact of such strict measures and how do people feel about it?

    Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus: South Africa’s alcohol and cigarette lockdown
  4. India’s ‘lockdown 4.0’

    India has extended its lockdown for another two weeks as it attempts to curb the spread of coronavirus.

    The government’s disaster response authority said that new guidelines would be issued, “keeping in view the need to open up economic activities”.

    The country went into lockdown on 24 March and schools, public transport and most businesses have been shut since.

    India has recorded 2,896 deaths. It has more than 90,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and 53,946 active infections.

    It is the fourth time the federal government has extended the world’s largest lockdown, covering 1.3 billion people. India media dubbed the extension “lockdown 4.0”.

    Read more here.

  5. Hospitals in Brazil’s São Paulo ‘near collapse’

    Doctors at a hospital bed

    Copyright: afp

    The mayor of Brazil’s largest city, São Paulo, has said its health system could collapse as demand grows for emergency beds to deal with coronavirus cases.

    Bruno Covas said the city’s public hospitals had reached 90% and could run out of space in about two weeks.

    On Sunday, Brazil’s health ministry reported 7,938 new cases in the past 24 hours, taking the total above 241,000. Only the US, Russia and the UK have higher numbers. With more than 16,000 deaths, the country has the sixth-highest death toll.

    Brazil is deeply divided over how to respond to the crisis.

    While governors have implemented lockdown measures, President Jair Bolsonaro continues to speak out against such measures, arguing the harm from a collapsing economy will be worse than that from the virus.

  6. Buyers line up for Virgin Australia

    Coronavirus updates: Lowest death toll for weeks in UK, Italy, and Spain 5

    Simon Atkinson

    BBC News, Sydney

    Despite being in financial
    trouble even before the Covid-19 pandemic, Virgin Australia – Australia’s second-biggest airline – has had no shortage of potential buyers.

    Administrators
    Deloitte have shortlisted “a small number” of bidders to go through to the next
    stage of the sale process.

    They have not
    been named officially but are all described as “well
    funded and possessing deep aviation experience”. Binding
    offers must be made in the next four weeks or so.

    Whoever takes
    over Virgin Australia is expected to cut back the business – including axing
    unprofitable routes.

    But the fact there has been so much interest is a relief
    for those who feared that Qantas would have a domestic monopoly
    in this vast land, where air travel is an essential mode of transport.

    A Virgin Australia plane on the tarmac

    Copyright: Getty Images

  7. Crowds flock to beaches as lockdowns ease

    As some countries are easing their lockdowns, people are heading back to the beaches wherever they are allowed to.

    Social distancing measures are meant to remain in place though – which in some places means ticketed entires and temperature check before you can hit the waves.

    Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus: Beach crowds as countries ease lockdowns
  8. Europe sees low death toll as lockdown eases

    A glimmer of hope coming out of Europe this morning. The death toll in several countries have now hit a new low for the first time in weeks.

    Italy reported 145 new deaths on Sunday, its lowest toll since 9 March. It comes as the country is set to further ease its lockdown measures – most businesses in Italy will be free to reopen in just a matter of hours, after more than two months in lockdown.

    Over in Spain, the death toll stood at 87 – the first time the death toll has fallen below 100 since it imposed its lockdown restrictions. Spain is set to relax its restrictions outside of Madrid and Barcelona, with groups of up to 10 people free to meet.

    And the trend continues in the UK which saw 170 deaths, the lowest since 24 March – the day after lockdown was introduced. However it is not uncommon for the number of deaths to be lower at the weekend than those reported during the week.

    Read more about what restrictions are being eased in Europe here.

  9. Japan falls into recession for first time in years

    Japan has fallen into a recession for the first time since
    2015, as the virus outbreak continues to take a heavy toll on businesses and
    consumer spending.

    GDP shrank an annualised 3.4% in the first quarter of the
    year from the previous quarter, as private consumption, capital expenditure and exports fell.

    And experts say the future isn’t looking good either.

    “It’s near certainty the economy suffered an even deeper
    decline in the current quarter,” Yuichi Kodama, chief economist at the Meiji
    Yasuda Research Institute told Reuters.

    Analysts polled by Reuters said they expect Japan’s economy to shrink an annualised 22% in the current quarter – which if it happens, would be the biggest decline on record.

    A man walks past mostly closed shops in Dotonbori,

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Image caption: The once busy streets of Japan are now almost empty
  10. Welcome to our coverage

    Welcome back to our rolling coverage of all things coronavirus. Our teams across the globe will be keeping you posted on all the developments on the pandemic.

    Here’s what you need to know as the Asian morning kicks off this new week.

    • Several European countries have recorded their lowest daily death tolls in weeks. The falling numbers come as some countries are set to ease lockdown restrictions further
    • In the US, there were 820 new deaths linked to the virus in the past 24 hour, taking the country’s toll close to 90,000
    • Brazil now has the fourth-highest number of infections after the US, Russia and the UK. The mayor of Sao Paulo has warned the health system is close to collapse while Presiden Jair Bolsonaro continues to argue against the lockdown implemented by regional governors
    • Japan has entered its first recession since 2015. The world’s third largest economy is on course for its worst economic slump since World War Two as a result of the coronavirus crisis
    • India has extended its nationwide lockdown until 31 May, although there are considerable relaxations

Read More

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