More than 450,000 people have died as a result of the new coronavirus, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University more than 8.4 million people have been confirmed to have the new coronavirus around the world and more than four million have recovered.
With the world’s worst outbreak outside the United States, Brazil now has 978,142 confirmed cases and 47,748 deaths.
In Honduras, President Juan Orlando Hernandez became the latest world leader to be hospitalised after testing positive for the coronavirus.
The World Health Organization (WHO) announced that testing of the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine in its large multi-country trial of treatments for COVID-19 patients had been halted after new data and studies showed no benefit.
Here are the latest updates:
Friday, June 19
03:46 GMT – Brazil sees return of football at empty Maracana stadium
Brazilian football resumed after a three-month hiatus on Thursday night, with Flamengo beating Bangu 3-0 at an empty Maracana stadium in the first game of the restarted Rio de Janeiro state championship.
The match marked the return of Brazil’s state leagues, most of which were halted in March as the novel coronavirus spread.
Most of the other state championships, which are usually played between January and April before the national leagues take place in the second half of the year, have not yet set a date for resuming.
The resumption in Brazil has caused controversy, with two top clubs, Botafogo and Fluminense, saying they will not turn up for scheduled games this weekend.
Flamengo’s Pedro Rocha celebrates scoring their third goal, following the resumption of play behind closed doors [Ricardo Moraes/ Reuters]
03:04 GMT – Japan lifts all domestic travel curbs
Japan lifted all coronavirus-related curbs on domestic travel, with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe calling on people to go sightseeing or attend concerts and other events to help the nation’s economy bounce back from a pandemic recession.
Japan began lifting its pandemic lockdown in May as coronavirus infections fell. The latest easing on Thursday comes after the end of an emergency declaration that allowed people to return to work and for bars and restaurants implementing social distancing measures to reopen.
People drink and eat in an alley of ‘izakaya’, or Japanese-style bars, in Tokyo’s Shimbashi area [Charly Triballeau/ AFP]
“I would like people, while observing social distancing, to go out on sightseeing trips. We would like you to make an effort to engage in social and economic activity,” Abe said in an address to the country late on Thursday.
In addition to ending the domestic travel advisory, Japan is also allowing up to 1,000 people to gather at indoor and outdoor events. Japanese professional baseball teams will also restart games on Friday, although spectators will be locked out.
02:25 GMT – UN seeks urgent funding to transport pandemic aid
The United Nations food agency is warning that without immediate funding its global transport system will have to stop delivering thousands of tonnes of masks, gloves and other critical equipment to 132 countries by the third week of July.
Amer Daoudi, the World Food Programme’s director of operations and COVID-19 response, told a video press conference that the Rome-based agency needs $965m to sustain its transport services through 2020.
But so far it has received about $132m – only 14 percent – even though “the COVID-19 virus is not slowing down” and “the entire humanitarian and health community is relying on WFP’s logistic services now more than ever,” Daoudi said.
‘We’re facing a double pandemic’: UN body warns of ‘mega-famines’ (1:53)
02:06 GMT – Mexico posts record number of new infections
Mexico reported another record one-day increase in confirmed coronavirus cases – 5,662.
The country now has 165,455 confirmed cases and 19,747 confirmed deaths.
A health worker speaks with a woman while on door-to-door visits to carry out COVID-19 tests in Mexico City [Pedro Pardo/ AFP]
01:34 GMT – Honduras president stable, fatigued after hospitalisation
Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez is in stable condition and being treated for pneumonia after testing positive for COVID-19, one of his doctors said Thursday.
Dr Cesar Aaron Carrasco at the Military Hospital told Reuters News Agency that Hernandez’s condition had improved since he was admitted on Wednesday with difficulty breathing, fever and fatigue.
“In the two days that he’s been hospitalised an improvement in his situation has been observed,” Carrasco said. “He’s in a good general state, recovering.”
Carrasco said the president no longer laboured in his breathing, but still suffered fatigue when walking. He said it was unclear how long Hernandez would remain hospitalised.
00:53 GMT – Further lockdowns not needed in US, Fauci tells AFP
The United States does not require more widespread lockdowns to get its COVID-19 outbreak under control, a leading government expert told the AFP news agency, amid concerns about an uptick of cases in some 20 states, including California, Florida and Texas.
“I don’t think we’re going to be talking about going back to lockdown,” Anthony Fauci said when asked if states that are seeing a surge in their caseload should reissue stay-at-home orders.
“I think we’re going to be talking about trying to better control those areas of the country that seem to be having a surge of cases.”
Stressing the need for localised approaches, Fauci said one thing that bothered him was the public’s lack of compliance to authorities’ recommendations about wearing masks.
Participants of San Diego’s Junior Lifeguard Program wear masks on the beach [Mike Blake/ Reuters]
“We have a country where even when the recommendations are to wear a mask, a recommendation that I’ve been involved in making, there are some groups that actually do the recommendations very strictly and they adhere to it,” he said.
“And then … you see pictures of people in bars and in congregations without that. So again, it’s a mixed bag. Some people are doing it fine, and some are not.”
00:18 GMT – Nursing homes represent more than 1 in 4 coronavirus deaths in US
In the US, nursing home residents account for nearly one in 10 of all the coronavirus cases and more than a quarter of the deaths, according to an Associated Press analysis of government data.
The analysis of data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services found that nearly half of the more than 15,000 nursing homes have reported suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of June 7. About one in five facilities – or 21 percent – have reported deaths.
Nationwide, nursing homes reported nearly 179,000 suspected or confirmed cases among residents and 29,497 deaths.
00:01 GMT – Brazil nears 50,000 coronavirus deaths and 1 million cases
New statistics from Brazil’s Health Ministry shows the country fast approaching one million confirmed coronavirus cases and 50,000 deaths.
With the world’s worst outbreak outside the US, Brazil now has 978,142 confirmed cases and 47,748 deaths, up 1,238 from Wednesday, the ministry said.
Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m Zaheena Rasheed in Male, Maldives.
You can find the key developments from yesterday, June 18, here.