Compulsory testing for people arriving in Germany from coronavirus risk areas came into force on Saturday, with the list of risk areas updated every day by the disease control agency the Robert Koch Institute. Daily infections of COVID-19 in Germany rose by over 1,000 for the third day in a row, reflecting a trend not seen since May.
French Health Ministry chief Jerome Salomon issued a warning Friday about a clear uptick in COVID-19 cases. “The virus continues to circulate very actively worldwide. There is an upward trend in France and Europe,” Salomon told a news conference.
Here are the latest developments regarding the novel coronavirus around the world:
In Belgium, which has register about 70,000 cases and 9,800 deaths, the city of Brussels has warned that it is prepared to require people to wear masks in public spaces and in private spaces accessible to the public, if infections continue to rise.
Germany's Foreign Ministry said that tourist trips to the Belgian province of Antwerp were unadvisable, citing “renewed high infection numbers.”
Poland is also set to re-impose compulsory face masks in all public spaces in nine of its districts, in response to a rise in infections. The restrictions be in effect on Saturday and will also affect sports and cultural events in those areas, mainly in the south and east.
Greece, which had thus far fared better in the pandemic, declared a “wake-up week” on COVID-19, tightening restrictions after the steady rise in mostly domestic infections, which officials have blamed on overcrowding in clubs and social events.
Read more: Are Berliners packing up and leaving the city to flee the coronavirus?
Ireland, which had one of the lowest infection rates in Europe, has also seen a spike over the last week, with the average infection rate more than doubling to around 50 infections per day.
The first localized reimposition of some coronavirus restrictions was announced for three of the country's 26 counties. Restaurants, cafes and pubs in Kildare, Laois and Offaly can only serve food in outdoor areas to small groups for the next two weeks and residents will only be allowed to leave their county in limited circumstances.
Germany with lift travel restrictions that prevented unmarried couples from different, non-EU countries from seeing each other. Couples will still have to provide proof of their long relationship, either with a previous joint residence abroad or a documented previous in-person meeting in Germany. Additionally, the partner living in Germany will have to provide a formal visit invitation and the couple must sign a joint declaration, affirming the existence of their relationship.
Additionally, compulsory testing was introduced for those arriving in Germany from risk areas.
Read more: Is Germany ready for the second coronavirus wave?
Latin America and the Caribbean have surpassed Europe to become the hardest-hit region by coronavirus deaths. The region reported 213,120 fatalities, 460 more than Europe. Brazil alone has reported a COVID-19 death toll of almost 100,000, nearly half of the region's total.
With more than 2.9 million infections since the pandemic began, Brazil has the world's worst coronavirus outbreak after the US. Mexico came close behind, with a death toll that has surged past 50,000. The country has nearly 470,000 registered infections.
As the infections remain high in the US, negotiations for another economic relief package between the White House and Congress broke down. The Trump administration is now considering using executive orders over the weekend to resume enhanced unemployment benefits and reinstate a moratorium on evictions, among other benefits.
ed,jcg/dr (Reuters, AP, AFP, dpa)