Mexico 3rd in global pandemic deaths, Vietnam struggles anew

COSTA RICA- HEALTH- VIRUS- MIGRANT

In Brazil, the country second hardest hit by the virus worldwide, the death toll climbed to 92,475 with the latest fatalities, while the number of cases surged to over 2.6 million, including 52,383 infected over the past 24 hours.

On Saturday, Johns Hopkins University reported more than 4.6 million cases in the USA and a death toll surpassing 154,000.

Meanwhile, Mexican health officials on Friday reported 688 new deaths, pushing the country's confirmed total to over 46,600.

The government was slow to decentralize testing sites, preventing private companies and states from providing their own testing.

Since first appearing in China last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 188 countries and regions. Hong Kong reported more than 100 new cases as of Saturday among the population of 7.5 million.

Nationwide, Japan's daily count of cases totalled a record 1,579 people on Friday.

A third person died there of coronavirus complications, officials said on Saturday, a day after it recorded its first-ever death. "Then I'll put on a mask and I'll stop talking", he said. Only the US and Brazil have higher fatality numbers.

Obrador joined the list of leaders who have refused to wear a mask - including Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who has tested positive for COVID-19 - and President Trump, though the USA president started publicly wearing a mask and encourage the use of masks in July.

The global pandemic has affected almost every aspect of this year's Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca, with as few as 1,000 pilgrims already residing in Saudi Arabia taking part, down from 2.5 million last year.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic on March 11.

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