- President Jair Bolsonaro said nearly everyone will probably end up catching the new coronavirus, saying there was nothing to fear.
- Mexico’s confirmed coronavirus deaths rose to 46 688, placing the country’s death toll from the pandemic at third highest in the world.
- China reported 45 cases of the new coronavirus in the mainland for 31 July, down sharply from 127 cases a day earlier.
Mexico’s coronavirus death toll becomes third highest worldwide
Mexico’s confirmed coronavirus deaths rose to 46 688 on Friday, health ministry data showed, placing the country’s death toll from the pandemic at third highest in the world, overtaking Britain, according to a Reuters tally.
The health ministry registered 8 458 new cases, a record for a single day, as well as 688 additional deaths, bringing the total to 424 637 cases and 46 688 fatalities.
The government has said the real number of infected people is likely significantly higher than the confirmed cases.
Recovered from virus, Bolsonaro says nothing to fear
Fresh off a bout of Covid-19, President Jair Bolsonaro said on Friday nearly everyone will probably end up catching the new coronavirus, urging Brazilians to “face up to it” and saying there was nothing to fear.
The far-right leader’s latest bid to downplay the pandemic came as Brazil closed in on the grim milestone of 100 000 people killed by the virus, the second-highest death toll in the world, after the United States.
Bolsonaro, who is just coming off three weeks in quarantine with a case of the virus, pointed to his own case as an example.
“I’m in the high-risk group,” the 65-year-old president told journalists during a visit to the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul.
“I knew I was going to catch it someday, as I think unfortunately nearly everyone here is going to catch it eventually. What are you afraid of? Face up to it,” he said.
“I regret the deaths. But people die every day, from lots of things. That’s life.”
US records over 25 000 coronavirus deaths in July
US coronavirus deaths rose by over 25,000 in July and cases doubled in 19 states during the month, according to a Reuters tally, dealing a crushing blow to hopes of quickly reopening the economy.
The United States recorded 1.87 million new cases in July, bringing total infections to 4.5 million, for an increase of 69%. Deaths in July rose 20% to nearly 154 000 total.
The biggest increases in July were in Florida, with over 310 000 new cases, followed by California and Texas with about 260 000 each. All three states saw cases double in June.
Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York had the lowest increases, with cases rising 8% or less.
South Korean sect leader arrested for hindering virus efforts
The elderly leader of a secretive South Korean sect at the centre of the country’s early coronavirus outbreak was arrested on Saturday for allegedly hindering the government’s effort to contain the epidemic.
Lee Man-hee, 88, is the head of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, which is often condemned as a cult.
People linked to the church accounted for more than half of the South’s 4 000-plus coronavirus cases in February when the country was enduring one of the worst early outbreaks in the world.
Lee is accused of giving inaccurate records of church gatherings and false lists of its members to health authorities.
He was taken into custody early Saturday “after the Suwon District Court granted an arrest warrant at 1:20 am”, a court spokesperson told AFP.
Mainland China reports 45 new coronavirus cases
China reported 45 cases of the new coronavirus in the mainland for 31 July, down sharply from 127 cases a day earlier, the health commission said on Saturday.
Of the new infections, 31 were in the far western region of Xinjiang, according to a statement by the National Health Commission. Eight were in the northeastern province of Liaoning, and the remaining six were imported cases.
China reported 23 new asymptomatic cases, up from 11 a day earlier.
As of the end of Friday, mainland China had 84 337 confirmed coronavirus cases, the health authority said. The Covid-19 death toll remained at 4 634.