Hello and welcome to today’s live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic with me, Helen Sullivan.
A military plane on Friday brought the first US emergency coronavirus supplies to help India battle its devastating surge in the pandemic.
Meanwhile the United Kingdom said Thursday it is temporarily reducing its international aid from £14.5bn (about $20bn) last year to £10bn this year ($14bn) because of the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, and two UN agencies announced huge funding cuts of more than 80%.
Here are the other key recent developments:
- Brazil’s death toll passes 400,000. Brazil on Thursday registered a further 3,001 Covid-19 fatalities, taking its official death toll since the start of the pandemic past 400,000, the health ministry said, second only to the death toll of the United States.
- The World Health Organization has warned European governments that relaxing Covid restrictions too soon could cause cases to spiral again, potentially triggering a wave of new infections as seen in India.
- The French president, Emmanuel Macron, unveiled a roadmap on Thursday for a progressive unwinding of France’s lockdown over the next two months.
- Thailand has added more measures to contain its biggest Covid outbreak yet, including a nationwide requirement to wear masks in public and a ban on dining at restaurants in and around its capital, Bangkok.
- Italy has extended Covid restrictions already in place on travellers from other European countries for 15 days, the health ministry said.
- Romania has reported its first case of a Covid variant first identified in India, according to its health ministry.
- Ireland will press ahead with plans to reopen all retail stores, personal services and non-residential construction in May with hotels, the foreign minister said.