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Global coronavirus deaths pass 200,000

  • The coronavirus global death toll exceeded the 200,000 threshold, according to a tally by the Johns Hopkins University.

  • The World Health Organization (WHO) warned against countries issuing so-called "immunity passports" to those recovered from COVID-19, saying there is no evidence yet the previously infected cannot be reinfected.

  • In the United Kingdom, an additional 813 people died in hospital after testing positive for the disease caused by the new coronavirus, bringing the country's total to 20,319.

  • India allowed a limited reopening of shops in neighbourhoods and residential areas, a month after the country of some 1.3 billion people went into lockdown.

  • Worldwide, the number of confirmed infections stood at more than 2.85 million people, with some 810,000 recoveries.

Easing Restrictions

Plans are under way to restart the economies of Canadian provinces. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Saturday that cititizen should not depend on presuming people who become infected with coronavirus develop immunity to it,

The World Health Organization said earlier that there was "no evidence" that people who have recovered from COVID-19 and have antibodies are protected from a second infection.

The Pakistani government has extended the nationwide lockdown till May 9.

However, it is switching to a so-called "smart lockdown" from Saturday under which it will implement targeted tracking and tracing of cases while allowing some industrial and commercial activities to begin under safety guidelines.

"Isolating these cases and their contacts will improve our ability to contain the disease alongside allowing the economy to function and people to get employment," said Asad Umar, Pakistan's planning minister, who also oversees the coronavirus national response body.

"This upcoming month of Ramadan will be decisive," he said, emphasising that adhering to the government's virus containment measures will allow other parts of the economy to restart.

Prayer congregations for Ramadan have also been allowed in Pakistan with the exception of the southern province of Sindh, where doctors have warned the virus could spread rapidly.

Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said in an address to the nation that people will be allowed out to exercise from May 2 if the number of new coronavirus cases continues to fall.

Sanchez said people would be allowed outside for sport or to go for a walk with a person with whom they live if the evolution of the pandemic "remains favourable".

Spaniards have been living under one of Europe's strictest lockdowns since March 14. They are allowed out for food, medicine and essential work but not to exercise.

Germans protest against lockdown in Berlin

German police wearing riot gear and face masks tussled with dozens of protesters demonstrating in central Berlin against the coronavirus lockdown on public life.

Protesters shouted "I want my life back" and held up signs with slogans such as "Protect constitutional rights", "Freedom isn't everything but without freedom, everything is nothing", and "Daddy, what is a kiss?"

Police said on Twitter they had arrested more than 100 people.

Source: Aljazeera

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