The House on Thursday afternoon held a moment of silence to honor those who have died during the pandemic. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called for the moment around 1:15 p.m. "in remembrance of the over 100,000 Americans who have passed away from the COVID-19 virus."
COVID-19 has killed more Americans than the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam combined.
While the pandemic is confusing to adults, it's especially so for children who have suddenly lost their school, their connections with friends and grandparents, and even their ability to play freely outside. To them, coronavirus is like an unseen monster under the bed. What no one knows yet is just how sharp its fangs are.
- MAPS: Confirmed cases in the U.S. and worldwide; confirmed deaths in the U.S. and globally
- Reopening America: See what states across the U.S. have already reopened.
- The coronavirus has destroyed the job market in every state. See the per-state jobless numbers and how they’ve changed.
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This live coverage has ended. Continue reading May 29 coronavirus news here.
Russian deaths pass 4,000 as Moscow lockdown set to ease
The coronavirus death toll in Russia passed 4,000 people on Thursday, as the country grapples with the ongoing health crisis.
Despite the increasing number of deaths and infections, from June 1 Moscow will begin "Phase 1" of easing its lockdown, with some non-food stores and businesses re-opening. However, electronic passes will remain in place to enforce stay at home rules introduced in April.
The Mayor of Moscow also said he would allow some outdoor exercise to resume during scheduled times, so long as people wear protective face masks.
Earlier this week, President Vladimir Putin announced that Russia would go ahead with a delayed military parade on June 24, as he declared the pandemic had peaked. Many other Russian provinces have already eased lockdowns.
Africa faring well but should not be complacent, says WHO
South Africa and Nigeria were among the countries with the highest number of cases, the WHO said during an online briefing. But added it had trained more than 10,000 health workers across the continent, in skills such as psychological support and infection prevention.
"With strong country leadership ... cases in Africa remain lower than in some other parts of the world," said Matshidiso Moeti, WHO's regional director for Africa. "However, we cannot let our guard down and we cannot be complacent."
Iraq virus cases pass 5,000 mostly in Baghdad
A statement by the ministry on Wednesday said that 287 new cases were recorded nationwide during the past 24 hours — the vast majority in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.
"The cases of coronavirus pandemic are all over Baghdad, and there is no specific area in the city that is far from the risk of the disease," Provincial Governor Mohammed Jaber al-Atta, said in a statement.
More than 200,000 tests have been carried out in the conflict-ridden country, the Health Ministry said, which had helped to identify new outbreaks.
Australian archbishop calls for equality between churches and pubs
A Catholic archbishop has accused an Australian state government of unfair pandemic rules, which allow up to 50 people into pubs while limiting church congregations to just 10.
Archbishop Anthony Fisher, in Sydney, encouraged Catholics on Thursday to sign a petition calling on the New South Wales government to treat churches equally with pubs and restaurants when it brings in new rules on June 1.
"Contrary to what has been said throughout this pandemic, we do not consider church attendance to be non-essential — indeed, nothing is more essential than the practice of our faith," the petition said.
Siberian zoo sees lockdown baby boom
A Siberian zoo that closed its doors to visitors for over two months due to the coronavirus, says the lockdown has encouraged a baby boom among its animals.
Among the zoo's new arrivals are rare Egyptian goslings, reindeer calves, llama crias and a baby brown weeper capuchin monkey.
"Judging by the baby boom, the lockdown has clearly been good for us because there are a lot of interesting and beautiful baby animals now," said Andrei Gorban, the director of Krasnoyarsk's Royev Ruchey Zoo.
Gorban said that while the absence of onlookers had encouraged mating among some residents, it had confused others, with the zoo's herd of camels among those particularly missing visitors, he said.
WHO creates foundation to increase funding in virus fight
The World Health Organization announced the creation of a foundation for new sources of funding, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, aiming to broaden its contributor base.
Calling it a "historic step," WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus announced the creation of the WHO Foundation on Wednesday at a virtual briefing.
He said it would ease a potential financial shortage and that it had been in the works for years. The funds will go towards all the WHO projects including vaccine research and preparing for future pandemics, not just the current coronavirus.
President Donald Trump recently threatened to permanently halt funding from the U.S. — the WHO's biggest financial contributor — after criticizing its handling of the pandemic.
South Korea reports worrying new spike in cases
Thursday’s resurgent spike of 79 new cases is linked to workers at a massive logistics warehouse in Seoul, operated by a local e-commerce giant.
Health minister Park Neung Hoo said the government would reimpose some "enhanced quarantine measures in the Seoul metropolitan area" for the next two weeks, to quell the flare-up.
Recently, hundreds of other infections have been linked to nightclubs in the country’s capital, which saw huge crowds pour into them in early May after officials relaxed social distancing rules.
Singaporean gets jail time for Facebook post
A taxi driver in Singapore has been sentenced to four months in jail, after posting a message to a private Facebook group claiming food outlets would close and urged people to stock up during the coronavirus pandemic.
The public prosecutor called for a sentence that would deter others from spreading "hysteria."
Singapore has imposed tough punishments on those who breach COVID-19 rules or spread misinformation. This is not the first example. Last month, a man who broke a curfew by 30 minutes, to buy a flatbread, was fined $1,000. While another, breached a stay-home order to go out and eat pork rib soup and was jailed for six weeks.
U.K.'s Boris Johnson faces schools rebellion over plans to send kids back
LONDON — In the early days of the lockdown, it almost felt like a novelty for parents like Claire Collins as she and her friends swapped home schooling tips on WhatsApp.
"There was an influx of people passing around, quite excitedly, things you could do with your kids at home: links on Pinterest, that sort of thing," said Collins, 37, who has children ages 2 and 5 and lives in the town of Abergavenny in Wales.
"Now I think that enthusiasm has died. It's fizzled out," she said, struggling to speak over her children, Amber and Romy, who were vying for her attention in the background. "It sounds fun, but it's actually been quite taxing and draining."
India has record daily jump in cases
India sees no respite from the coronavirus, reporting another record single day jump of over 6,500 cases, bringing the total to 158,333 on Thursday, as the two-month lockdown is due to ease on Sunday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government is preparing a new set of guidelines to be issued this weekend, possibly extending the lockdown in worst-hit areas, as it promotes economic activity.
The Indian Health Ministry reported 4,531 deaths so far. Mumbai — India’s financial and entertainment capital — is the worst hit city with nearly 1,200 deaths.
An increase in cases has also been reported in some of India’s poorest eastern states, as migrant workers returning to native villages from large cities have begun arriving home on special trains.