US COVID-19 deaths toll surpasses American fatalities in Vietnam War

Updated: Apr 30, 2020, 08:53 IST | Agencies | Washington

It accounts for nearly one-third of the 3.1 million cases globally on Tuesday, while the fatalities spiked to over 58,300, exceeding the number of American soldiers who lost their lives in the two-decade-long Vietnam War

The Staten Island Ferry passes in front of the Statue of Liberty at sunset amid the pandemic in New York City. The US becomes the first country in the world to have more than one million cases of COVID-19. Pic/AFP
The Staten Island Ferry passes in front of the Statue of Liberty at sunset amid the pandemic in New York City. The US becomes the first country in the world to have more than one million cases of COVID-19. Pic/AFP

The US became the first country in the world to have more than one million cases of the novel Coronavirus. It accounts for nearly one-third of the 3.1 million cases globally on Tuesday, while the fatalities spiked to over 58,300, exceeding the number of American soldiers who lost their lives in the two-decade-long Vietnam War.

'We're coming back strong'
According to the US National Archives, 58,220 American soldiers died in the Vietnam conflict, which began in 1955 and ended in 1975. With 58,355 deaths so far, the US also accounts for one-fourth of the over 2,13,000 global fatalities.

"We continue to pray for the victims as well as for those Americans who are grieving their lost ones and their loved ones. There's never been anything like this. We suffer with one heart but we will prevail. We are coming back, and we're coming back strong," US President Donald Trump said at the White House during his remarks on the Paycheck Protection Programme.

"Now that our experts believe the worst days of the pandemic are behind us, Americans are looking forward to the safe and rapid reopening of our country," he said. "Throughout this ordeal, millions of hard-working Americans have been asked to really make tremendous, tremendous sacrifices. It is sacrifices like nobody thought would even be possible; nobody thought we would ever be talking about something like this," Trump said. Meanwhile, several states have initiated the process to reopen their economies.

Some states reopen
In California, Governor Gavin Newsom outlined the phased reopening of his state.
"We are not going back to the way things were until we get to immunity or a vaccine. We will base reopening plans on facts and data, not on ideology. Not what we want. Not what we hope," he told reporters. More than 1,800 people have died due to the coronavirus in California so far. Schools and colleges, he said, could start in July-August.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has also announced first phase reopening of the state. Tennessee on Monday allowed reopening of restaurants and later this week retail outlets could resume their businesses. Pennsylvania has announced three-phase reopening of the state beginning May 3. The US, Trump said, is opening up again.

58,355
No. of deaths due to COVID-19 in America

58,220
No. of US soldiers killed in two-decade-long war

People visit Yellow Crane Tower after it reopened to the public in China's Wuhan, the epicentre of the COVID-19 outbreak, on Wednesday. Pic/AFP
People visit Yellow Crane Tower after it reopened to the public in China's Wuhan, the epicentre of the COVID-19 outbreak, on Wednesday. Pic/AFP

China's parliament to meet on May 22

China on Wednesday said it will hold from May 22 its annual parliament session, signalling that the pandemic that paralysed the country for over three months is finally under control. The third session of the 13th National People's Congress, which was to be held from March 5, was postponed for the first time ever due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

After rolling out exit plan, Spain sees spike

With 325 new deaths, Spain on Wednesday witnessed a slight rebound in fatalities, a day after Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced his plan to ease the COVID-19 lockdown. Individual exercise, haircuts and other personalised services with an appointment will be allowed from Saturday. COVID-19 has killed 24,275 Spaniards and infected over 2,12,000.

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