A health worker treats a patient suffering from the coronavirus in Brazil. File/Reuters
Global cases of the novel coronavirus reached over 8 million on Monday, as infections surge in Latin America and the United States and China grapple with fresh outbreaks.
The United States still leads the world with the highest number of infections, about 2 million or 25% of all reported cases. However, the outbreak is growing fastest in Latin America, which now accounts for 21% of all cases, according to a Reuters tally.
Brazil's COVID-19 cases and deaths have surged to make it the No.2 hot spot in the world.
The first case was reported in China in early January and it took until early May to reach 4 million cases. It has taken just five weeks to double to 8 million cases, according to a Reuters tally.
Global deaths stand at over 434,000 and have doubled in seven weeks.
Although Brazil's official death toll from the pandemic has risen to nearly 44,000, the true impact is likely far greater than the data show, health experts said, citing a lack of widespread testing in Latin America's largest country.
In the United States, which has over 116,000 deaths, testing is still ramping up months after the start of the outbreak.
After cases declined in much of the United States for weeks, many areas are now reporting record new cases and hospitalizations. Fears of a second wave in hard-hit states - or a failure to get a grip on the first wave in some others - have led health experts to plead with the public to wear masks, avoid large gatherings and maintain social distance.
China is also grappling with a resurgence of the virus just as its economy is trying to recover from shutdowns earlier this year. After nearly two months with no new infections, the capital Beijing has seen a spike in cases linked to the biggest wholesale food market in Asia.
In Italy, one of the countries hardest hit by the virus, prosecutors questioned Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte over his government's initial response.
In the country's northern Lombardy region, an investigation has been launched into why a quarantined "red zone" was not enforced around two towns sooner.
And in Bergamo province, 50 victims' family members filed complaints this week over how the crisis was handled.
"All investigations are welcome. The citizens have the right to know and we have the right to reply," Conte said this week.
Elsewhere, British Airways, easyJet and Ryanair launched legal action against the British government over a "flawed" 14-day coronavirus quarantine system introduced this week.
Europe is pushing ahead with its exit from lockdown, with a number of countries preparing to reopen borders on a limited basis on Monday after the EU Commission urged a relaxation of restrictions.
France said it would gradually reopen its borders to non-Schengen countries from July 1.
Greece said it would welcome tourists again, though Britons remain barred -- and passengers from Italy, Spain and the Netherlands must undergo tests on arrival.
Germany said it would end land border checks on Monday.
And Italy said it would allow amateur contact sports -- including team sports -- from June 25.
'Fight not over'
Yet world health officials have warned that the virus is far from contained.
"The fight is not over," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Thursday.
In evidence of the continued threat, eleven residential estates in the southern part of the Chinese capital were locked down due to a fresh cluster of coronavirus cases linked to a nearby meat market, officials said Saturday.
Seven cases have so far been linked to Xinfadi meat market, six of them confirmed on Saturday, officials added. Nine nearby schools and kindergartens have been closed.
China has largely brought domestic infections under control, and the majority of cases in recent months have been among overseas nationals returning home.
In India, experts are warning the worst is far from over.
Deaths from coronavirus in New Delhi are almost twice as high as official figures show, a city leader said.
The Baltimore-based university had recorded more than 1.1 million cases in the country as of 8:30pm on Friday (0030 GMT Saturday), with 64,789 deaths, a rise of three percent from a day earlier.
The country — hardest hit by the pandemic in terms of the number of fatalities — has now confirmed a total of 1,466,682 cases, the Baltimore-based school reported.
At least 11,103,630 cases of coronavirus have been registered in 196 countries and territories. Of these, at least 5,715,100 are now considered recovered.
Europe remains the hardest hit continent with 2,637,546 cases including 195,975 fatalities, while the United States has 2,510,323 infections including 125,539 deaths. The rate of infections worldwide continues to rise, with one million new cases recorded in just six days.
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Meng, the 49-year-old daughter of Ren Zhengfei, the billionaire founder of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei, was granted release in a Vancouver court hearing after three years of house arrest in Canada while fighting extradition to the United States.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has said that the UAE is called the country of the future.