Amid COVID-19 outbreak, countries tighten restrictions as death toll continues to mount

Updated: Mar 16, 2020, 09:59 IST | Agencies | Barcelona

In Italy, authorities accuse people of irresponsible behaviour for still socialising despite the nationwide lockdown

Passengers wearing facemasks wait to board a train in Surabaya, Indonesia on Sunday. Pic/AFP
Passengers wearing facemasks wait to board a train in Surabaya, Indonesia on Sunday. Pic/AFP

Authorities around the world turned to increasingly drastic measures to try to slow the spread of the new Coronavirus (COVID-19) on Sunday, with lockdowns, curfews and travel restrictions spreading. Soldiers and police sealed the densely populated Philippine capital from most domestic travellers in one of Southeast Asia's most drastic containment moves. The move mirrored a lockdown Spain announced just hours earlier for its 46 million citizens.

In Italy, the worst-hit European country, the number of deaths climbed past 1,400 and infections surged roughly 20 per cent overnight to more than 21,000 because of what authorities characterised as irresponsible behaviour by people still socialising despite the nationwide lockdown. In Britain, the death toll nearly doubled from the day before to 21, and the number of people infected rose to over 1,100. Ireland had 90 confirmed cases and one death as of Friday. Greece's infection total approached 230 with three deaths.

The US has seen 60 deaths and more than 2,100 cases. In hard-hit Washington state, where 40 have died and more than 550 have been infected, officials said the disease is straining the supply of protective gear available to medical providers despite shipments from the federal government.

Trump tests negative
US President Donald Trump has tested negative for the Coronavirus, the White House physician said. Trump, 73, had taken the test on Friday night. The results came out in less than 24 hours. "Last night, after an in-depth discussion with the President regarding the COVID-19 test, he elected to proceed. This evening, I received confirmation that the test is negative," Dr Sean Conley, the presidential physician, said on Saturday.

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

Queen shifted out of Palace
Queen Elizabeth II has been shifted out of Buckingham Palace in London to Windsor Castle as the UK plans for isolation measures for people over 70 amid the country's death toll from COVID-19 hitting 21, nearly doubling from 11 within a day. The 93-year-old monarch and her 98-year-old husband, Prince Philip, are likely to be placed in quarantine at the Royal Sandringham Estate in Norfolk as tougher measures are put in place to fight the coronavirus outbreak in the UK affecting over 1,140 people.

Total no. of deaths recorded in Italy

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