India's coronavirus infections surpass Italy's: Live updates

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India overtakes Italy as the sixth worst hit country by the coronavirus pandemic after another record single-day spike in confirmed infections, bringing the total to 236,657 cases.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has changed its position on face masks and is now encouraging people to wear them in crowded places, citing anecdotal evidence that supports their value in stopping the spread of the coronavirus. 

United States President Donald Trump has called for a shift in strategy against the coronavirus pandemic to focus resources on protecting "high-risk populations" while calling for a total end to stay-at-home orders in states throughout the country.

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro has threatened to pull his country out of the WHO, accusing the body of being "partisan" and "political". With more than 34,000 coronavirus deaths, Brazil now has the third-highest toll in the world.

About 6.7 million coronavirus cases have been confirmed around the world, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. More than 394,000 people have died, including some 109,000 in the United States. More than 2.9 million people have recovered.

Here are the latest updates:

June 6, Saturday 08:15 GMT - Number of virus cases in Africa tops 176,800

The total number of coronavirus cases in Africa rose to 176,807 on Saturday, as the continent grapples with community spread, according to the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. 

At least 4,902 patients have died so far across the continent due to the virus, it said in a Saturday update.

A total of 78,267 patients have so far recovered from the disease.

North Africa has so far confirmed 51,300 cases and a death toll of 2,200; Southern Africa has 46,000 cases and 933 deaths; West Africa has 39,900 cases and 795 deaths; East Africa has 20,600 cases and 592 deaths; and Central Africa has 18,900 cases and 421 deaths.

07:50 GMT - Fans and football return to Vietnam after coronavirus shutdown

Vietnam reopens its national soccer league for crowd after Covid-19

Football fans attend a match between Viettel and Duoc Nam Ha Nam Dinh of the V.League, the national football league, after the government eased a nationwide lockdown following the coronavirus outbreak in Nam Dinh province, Vietnam [Kham/Reuters]

Football was back and so were the spectators in Vietnam when the top domestic league resumed after the coronavirus shutdown.

Fans were allowed into Ho Chi Minh City's scoreless draw with Hai Phong on Friday among three matches. But unlike Germany’s Bundesliga and South Korea’s K-League, which returned to action in May with empty arenas, more than 1,000 fans attended the V-League game at Hai Phong.

Allowing spectators to the matches was the result of Vietnam’s successful efforts to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Despite sharing a long land border with China, where the virus originated, Vietnam, with a population of almost 100 million, has recorded just 328 cases and not a single recorded death.

Fans were subjected to temperature checks as they entered the stadiums, which were limited to half of normal capacity. They were not required to wear masks.

07:32 GMT - Hydroxychloroquine is 'useless' against COVID-19, says Oxford study

A study of thousands of patients led by the University of Oxford has said that the hydroxychloroquine drug does not work against the new coronavirus disease and should not be given to any more hospital patients around the world.

"If you are admitted to hospital, don’t take hydroxychloroquine," said Martin Landray, deputy chief investigator of the Recovery trial and professor of medicine and epidemiology at Oxford University. "It doesn't work."

"It is being touted as a game changer, a wonderful drug, a breakthrough. This is an incredibly important result, because worldwide we can stop using a drug that is useless."

07:00 GMT - Most of 51 new South Korea cases linked to door sales

South Korea has reported 51 new cases of COVID-19, mostly in the densely populated capital region, as authorities scramble to stem transmissions among low-income workers who cannot afford to stay home.

The figures announced by South Korea’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention brought national totals to 11,719 workers and 273 deaths.

At least 34 of the new cases were linked to door-to-door sellers hired by Richway, a Seoul-based health product provider.

Vice Health Minister Kim Gang-lip said the spread of the virus among Richway sellers was particularly alarming as most of them are aged in their 60s and 70s. He called for officials to strengthen their efforts to find and examine workplaces vulnerable to infections.

06:40 GMT - Pakistan reports highest single-day virus deaths

Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Karachi

A girl wearing a protective mask looks out from a train window after Pakistan started easing the lockdown restrictions and allowed to resume passenger trains, following the COVID-19 outbreak, in Karachi [File: Akhtar Soomro/Reuters]

Pakistan has broken its previous record of the highest single-day deaths ever from the novel coronavirus, reporting 97 fatalities over the last 24 hours, the health ministry said.

With the latest surge, the death toll in the country has reached 1,935.

With 4,734 new cases over the past day, the country’s number of coronavirus cases has reached 93,983, already surpassing China, and landing the country at the 17th spot in terms of coronavirus cases, the data shows. Some 32,581 patients have recovered.

Hello, this is Linah Alsaafin in Doha taking over from my colleague Zaheena Rasheed.

05:08 GMT - India's confirmed infections overtake Italy's

India has surpassed Italy as the sixth worst hit by the coronavirus pandemic after another record single-day spike in confirmed infections.

The health ministry reported 9,887 new cases on Saturday, bringing the total to 236,657.

Most of the new cases are in rural areas following the return of hundreds of thousands of migrant workers who left cities and towns after the lockdown in late March.

101 EAST | India: Under Lockdown (24:56)

The lockdown is now largely being enforced in high-risk areas while authorities have partially restored train services and domestic flights and allowed shops and manufacturing to reopen. Shopping malls and religious places are due to open on Monday with restrictions to avoid large gatherings.

03:51 GMT - Beijing eases emergency response level to second lowest

China's capital Beijing further eased its coronavirus measures on Saturday, lowering the city's emergency response level to the second lowest.

That will lift most restrictions on people travelling from Wuhan and the surrounding province of Hubei, where the virus first appeared late last year. They will no longer face 14-day mandatory quarantines and other forms of monitoring, and those currently in such situations will be allowed to return to their normal lives.

Beijing residential compounds will not be required to conduct temperature checks and masks no longer must be worn for outdoor activities. Kindergartens will reopen and other grades still suspended will restart classes.

Beijing has reported no new cases of local transmission in at least 50 days and as many as 90 days in some districts.

Foreign airlines to resume flights to China (2:07)

02:51 GMT - China urges citizens to shun Australia

China has advised its citizens not to visit Australia, citing racial discrimination and violence against Asians during the coronavirus pandemic.

A notice issued by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism late on Friday said there had "been an increase in words and deeds of racial discrimination and acts of violence against Chinese and Asians in Australia, due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic".

"The ministry advises Chinese tourists to raise their safety awareness and avoid travelling to Australia," the notice said.

The move comes after China threatened retaliation following Australia's decision to push for an international investigation into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic and responses to it.

02:14 GMT - China reports three new COVID-19 cases

China has recorded three new confirmed cases of the new coronavirus as of the end of Friday, down from five the day before, the National Health Commission said.

All of the cases were imported, involving travellers arriving from abroad, the NHC said.

The total number of infections in China, where the virus first emerged late last year, stands at 83,030. With no new deaths reported, the death toll remained at 4,634.

Coronavirus Beijing China

People wearing face masks cross a street in Beijing on June 1, 2020 [Noel Celis/ AFP]

02:07 GMT - California to allow pro-sports, day camps

California broadly relaxed its coronavirus-related shutdowns, moving to allow professional sports to be played without audiences and reopen day camps, tribal casinos, museums and zoos as soon as June 12.

The most populous US state will also allow film, television and music production, a key sector of the economy that provides thousands of jobs, to restart.

Still not allowed in California are nail salons, tattoo parlors, movie theatres, nightclubs, concert venues, theme parks or higher education, the state's website showed.

California reopens

California Governor Gavin Newsom, left, helps pack up lunches to be delivered to needy senior citizens, along with Hot and Cool Cafe co-owner Shana Jenson, second on the left, on June 3, 2020 [Genaro Molina/ Pool via AFP]

01:23 GMT - Brazil's Supreme Court halts police raids in Rio's favelas

A Brazilian Supreme Court minister has banned police raids in Rio de Janeiro's favelas during the coronavirus pandemic, as criticism of brutal police tactics grows in Latin America's largest nation.

In the decision, Minister Edson Fachin forbid raids on Brazil's informal shanty towns "except in absolutely exceptional cases", which must be preapproved by the state prosecutor's office.

Rio's police forces are notoriously violent, having killed more than 1,800 people in 2019. In May, police in Rio drew criticism for an operation in which a 14-year-old boy was killed, as well as another shootout in a coronavirus-stricken favela, which drew hundreds into the streets.

Congressman Alessandro Molon, whose Brazilian Socialist Party (PSB) filed the suit that resulted in the decision, called the ruling "historic".

00:39 GMT - Bolsonaro threatens WHO exit

President Jair Bolsonaro threatened to pull Brazil out of the WHO after the United Nations agency warned governments about the risk of lifting lockdowns before slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Speaking to journalists, Bolsonaro accused the WHO of being "partisan" and "political". He said Brazil will consider leaving the body unless it ceased to work "without ideological bias".

Brazil, Mexico coronavirus deaths hit daily record (2:15)

Earlier on Friday, when asked about efforts to loosen social-distancing orders in Brazil despite rising daily death rates and diagnoses, a WHO spokeswoman said a key criteria for lifting lockdowns was slowing transmission.

"The epidemic, the outbreak, in Latin America is deeply, deeply concerning," Margaret Harris told a news conference in Geneva. She said that among six key criteria for easing quarantines, "one of them is ideally having your transmission declining."

00:01 GMT - G20 pledges $21bn dollars to fight coronavirus

The Group of 20 (G20) - a bloc whose member nations have the world's largest economies - has pledged more than $21bn to fight the coronavirus, a statement by the group said early on Saturday.

"The G20, with invited countries, has coordinated the global efforts to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, G20 members and invited countries have pledged over US$21 billion to support funding in global health," the statement said.

The pledges will be directed towards diagnostics, vaccines, therapeutics, and research and development, the statement added.

Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera's continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I'm Zaheena Rasheed in Male, Maldives. 

For all the updates from yesterday, June 5, go here. 

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