Latin America and Caribbean pass 100,000 COVID-19 deaths

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Latin America and the Caribbean on Tuesday surpassed 100,000 coronavirus deaths, more than half of them in Brazil, according to an AFP count based on official figures.

The pandemic is accelerating across the region, which now has a total of 2.1 million cases, with Brazil, Mexico, Peru and Chile the most affected countries.

Brazil has the second-highest COVID-19 death toll in the world, after the United States, at more than 52,640 fatalities out of 1,145,906 confirmed cases.

A ordered Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who has famously compared the coronavirus to a "little flu," to wear a in public, after the far-right leader repeatedly flouted containment measures in place in Brasilia.

Mexico, also heavily hit by the virus, was struck Tuesday by a powerful 7.4 magnitude earthquake.

The quake hit as the country of 127 million people recorded its highest number of cases in a 24-hour period, with 6,288 new infections, according to the Ministry of Health.

Peru, meanwhile, exceeded 260,000 coronavirus cases, as it marked 100 days under mandatory lockdown and received a donation of 250 ventilators from the United States.

Its neighbor to the north, Colombia, extended its quarantine Tuesday until July 15, as its coronavirus cases continue to climb. The country has registered 2,404 deaths out of more than 73,500 cases.

© 2020 AFP

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