More than 6 million people have been formally infected with the emerging coronavirus in the world, two thirds of them in Europe and the United States, while lifting closures are continuing from Paris to New Delhi.
At least 6,000,867 cases of the virus have been recorded worldwide, including 366,848 deaths, according to a survey compiled by AFP according to official sources Saturday at 20:15 GMT.
Europe, the continent most affected by the virus, recorded 2,135,170 infections (177,595 deaths).
The United States, for its part, recorded 1,760,740 injuries and 103,472 deaths.
However, the virus is now progressing faster in Latin America, with an increase of more than 45,000 infections in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 944,695 infections and 49,230 deaths.
This comes at a time when the European Union called on Washington Saturday to reconsider the decision to cut its relationship with the World Health Organization, which US President Donald Trump accuses of co-operating with China in the Covid-19 crisis.
“International cooperation and solidarity through multilateral efforts are the only effective way to win this battle that the world is waging,” said European Commission President Ursula von der Laine and European Union Foreign Minister Josep Borrell.
On Friday, Trump, who has suspended his country’s financial contribution to the World Health Organization, carried out his threat to cut ties with the United Nations.
He declared “ending the relationship” between his country and the health organization he accuses of since the beginning of the outbreak of the epidemic that it is very tolerant with China where the virus appeared before it spread throughout the world.
The United States is the first contributor to the organization.
But Trump assured reporters, “We are redirecting this money to other urgent public health needs in the world”.
Richard Horton, editor of the prestigious British medical journal The Lancet, described the decision as “crazy and terrifying”, accusing the US government of “acting like a rabble in the midst of a humanitarian emergency”.
Professor Lawrence Justin, professor at the O’Neill Institute for National and International Health Law at Georgetown University and collaborator with the World Health Organization, said that the US President’s decision was “illegal” for two reasons: that the United States signed and ratified the Treaty of Accession to the World Health Organization and that the funds were approved by the US Congress.
Meanwhile, isolation measures continued to rise on Saturday, especially in Europe, with Italy opening the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa to visitors, while the Ukrainian capital is reopening its commercial centers and hotels.
In France, the famous “Galeries Lafayette” shop reopened its doors on Saturday, with the imposition of masks and the rules of social divergence.
The French authorities allowed the reopening of museums, gardens, cafes and restaurants from Tuesday, but it will only open its external patios in Paris.
The population will be able to move more than a hundred kilometers inside the country.
In Vienna, the public attended Friday evening the reopening of the Admiral Kino cinema, one of the oldest cinemas in Austria and one of the first to be reopened under the government’s decision as of May 29, with attendance limited to 100 spectators.
Likewise, India announced the easing of the closing procedures as of June 8, to include religious monuments, hotels, restaurants and malls, despite a record number of injuries in this country, which amounted to 85 thousand, including five thousand deaths.
On the other hand, the situation in Brazil, which has become the fourth country in the world, is exacerbated by the number of deaths after the United States, Britain and Italy.
Brazil recorded 28,834 deaths from the virus. Scientists believe that the real numbers in Brazil are much greater than the announced figures.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has refused to personally attend the Group of Seven summit in the United States in June, as proposed by the US president, a government spokesman confirmed to AFP on Saturday.
“Until now, given the general situation of the pandemic, she cannot accept participation in person and travel to Washington,” he said.
The US President wants to make this direct meeting a symbol of normalizing the situation while the epidemic continues to plunge the world economy into a crisis.
In the United States, where anxiety prevails due to the worsening economic situation, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Friday that he intends to start a partial lifting of isolation measures in New York City from the week beginning June 8, provided that public health indicators are satisfactory.
Initially, the decision includes only part of the economic activities, mainly the construction and industrial sectors.
New York is the city most affected in the world by the virus, with more than 21,000 deaths.
Restaurants and barbershops in Los Angeles, the main focus of Covid-19 in California, were allowed to reopen on Friday, on the condition that precautions are applied.
In California, the world’s fifth economic power, unemployment was virtually nonexistent before the outbreak. Now it affects 24% of the population of 40 million.
In Italy, GDP fell by 5.3% in the first quarter of the year compared to the previous quarter, as well as in France, which is entering a recession.
In Austria, the GDP decreased by 2.9%.
The Canadian economy recorded a contraction of 8.2 percent at the annual pace in the first quarter of this year, its biggest decline since the beginning of 2019.
In India, the economy recorded the lowest growth rate in the first quarter in twenty years, while the Brazilian economy witnessed a contraction of 1.5% compared to the previous quarter.
In Spain, the crisis exacerbated poverty and requests for food aid, prompting the government to agree on Friday to adopt a minimum vital income.
On the medical level, the Anakinra drug originally used to treat arthritis gives “encouraging” results for people with serious cases of Covid-19 by reducing the risk of death and the need to use respirators in resuscitation departments, according to a French study.