As the number of Covid-19 infections globally raced towards the 40 million mark, the US saw its tally of coronavirus cases surpass 8 million. In another grim milestone, global cases went up by more than 400,000 for the first time late on Friday, making it a record single-day spike.
In Europe, Germany to Italy to Portugal reported record cases as the pandemic’s accelerating resurgence forced fresh lockdowns. Londoners will be banned from mixing with other households indoors, while residents of Paris and eight other major French cities will be confined to their homes between 9pm and 6am for four weeks.
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The UK saw its credit rating cut by Moody’s. The pandemic has blown a hole in the public finances, with the credit assessor lowering the grade by a notch to Aa3, its fourth highest ranking.
Spain reported 6,591 cases and Italy posted a record 10,010 cases; while Belgium will close restaurants from Monday for four weeks.
Eight French senators have tested positive for Covid-19, the French Senate’s press office said on Friday. One of the senators has been hospitalised, France Info reported earlier. The cases were detected in a testing campaign among 125 of the nation’s 348 senators. The country reported 25,086 new coronavirus cases Friday.
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UN chief Antonio Guterres rued on Saturday that a divided world has “failed” to rise to the challenge of fighting the pandemic, and called for concerted action to prevent millions of people being pushed into poverty.