Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson takes a morning walk in St James Park before returning to Downing Street in London.
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson takes a morning walk in St James Park before returning to Downing Street in London.
PIC: AFP

Britain on Tuesday became the first country in Europe to confirm more than 30,000 coronavirus deaths and infections rose sharply again in Russia, even as other nations made great strides in taming the virus. China marked its third week with no new virus deaths and South Korea restarted its professional baseball season.

In the US, some states began halting steps to lift the lockdown restrictions even as thousands of new U.S. infections and deaths were being reported daily.

Britain looks set to surpass Italy as Europe's hardest-hit nation. The government says 28,734 people with COVID-19 had died in UK. hospitals, nursing homes and other settings while Italy has reported 29,079 fatalities. Tallies from both are likely to be underestimates because they only include people who tested positive and testing was not widespread in Italian and British nursing homes until recently.

Yet official UK statistics released Tuesday that take into account people who died with suspected COVID-19 give a fuller picture and put Britain's coronavirus toll at more than 30,000 dead. The statistics, which go up to April 24, show that deaths were a third higher than the government count. A comparable figure for Italy was not available.

In Russia, the number of infections rose sharply again, with Moscow reporting more than 10,000 new cases for three days in a row.

At the same time, many European countries that have relaxed strict lockdowns after new infections tapered off were watching their virus numbers warily.

"We know with great certainty that there will be a second wave - the majority of scientists is sure of that. And many also assume that there will be a third wave," Lothar Wieler, the head of Germany's national disease control center, said Tuesday.

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