Coronavirus: latest global developments

Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:

India locks down millions

More than 125 million people in Bihar, one of India's most impoverished states, are put under a new lockdown to last 15 days.

All schools, clubs, temples and non-essential businesses are ordered to close, but construction and agricultural activity are allowed to continue. Public transport is shut down, though are permitted to operate.

More than 584,000 deaths

The pandemic has killed at least 584,355 people worldwide since it surfaced in China late last year and more than 13.6 million have been infected, according to an AFP tally at 1100 GMT on Thursday based on official sources.

The United States is the worst-hit country with 137,419 deaths. It is followed by Brazil with 75,366, Britain with 45,053, Mexico with 36,906, and Italy with 34,997 fatalities.

Spain honours virus victims

Badly-hit Spain honours its more than 28,000 dead at a solemn state ceremony joined by bereaved families and top EU and World Health Organization figures.

Germany prepares for future outbreaks

Germany's federal and regional governments agree on tougher, more targeted lockdown measures to contain local outbreaks, with new rules that allow for a ban on travel "in and out of the affected areas" to limit the spread of the virus.

EU virus package

European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde urges EU leaders to do their bit and "quickly" agree on a huge recovery plan for the eurozone economy.

European Union leaders will meet in Brussels on July 17-18 to discuss a 750-billion-euro fund to help the hardest-hit member states weather the crisis.

France masks up

Wearing face will be masks compulsory in indoor public spaces in France from next week, the government says, as officials note signs of an uptick in the virus cases in the country.

Airline realism

Emirates airline says it is unrealistic to establish social distancing on aircraft by leaving seats empty to curb the spread of virus, as the cost would be too high to bear.

"The economy of the aircraft is built on filling it, filling the seats," says Boutros Boutros, Emirates' head of corporate communications.

"What we wish for is one thing, but the reality is another."

© 2020 AFP

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