World coronavirus death toll passes 190,000 – AFP tally

The global pandemic hit a grim new milestone on Friday, according to AFP, as the number of people who have lost their lives to the disease passed 190,00 and continues to rise, while countries battle to keep their populations safe.

The agency reports that a total of 190,089 people have passed away and 2,698,733 have been confirmed as infected since Covid-19 emerged in China in December. Europe has recorded the highest number of fatalities, with 116,221 people dying across the continent.

More than 1.2 million Europeans have been diagnosed with the disease, putting the mortality rate around 8.9 percent.

The country with the highest recorded death toll has been the United States, followed by Italy, France and Britain. But there is some cause for hope that the tide may be about to turn, as testing capabilities grow worldwide and human trials for a vaccine get underway.

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The UK, Germany and Israel have all reported early progress with vaccine trials, the biggest hope for stemming and eventually eradicating the virus. Testing is also being ramped up around the world, in the hope that better data will allow countries to ease the lockdown measures that have battered the global economy.

Countries are slowly allowing more “non-essential” businesses to re-open, after many confined the bulk of their populations to their homes. This week, Germany began to ease its lockdown measures along with Norway and worst-hit Italy.

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