COVID-19 cases soar in South Asia as Pakistan sees surge in infections after easing lockdown

Source: Xinhua| 2020-06-18 20:43:09|Editor: huaxia
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HONG KONG, June 18 (Xinhua) -- The number of COVID-19 cases soared in South Asian countries including India and Bangladesh on Thursday, as Pakistan has also seen a surge in infections after easing the lockdown.

The total fatalities of in Pakistan reached 3,093, as the number of positive cases reached 160,118, the federal health ministry said. A surge in cases has been witnessed after the country eased a lockdown to support the economy and the low-income communities.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi held a telephone conversation with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on the COVID-19 pandemic and regional issues, according to the Pakistani foreign ministry.

India's federal health ministry said 334 new deaths, besides fresh 12,881 positive cases, were reported during the past 24 hours across the country, taking the number of deaths to 12,237 and the total cases to 366,946.

This is the highest single-day spike in terms of the number of new cases in the country so far.

Bangladesh reported 3,803 new cases, taking the total cases to 102,292, with 1,343 deaths. Professor Nasima Sultana, a senior Health Ministry official, told a briefing that 38 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours across Bangladesh.

Among other Asia-Pacific countries, active cases in Malaysia dropped below 500 as the number of newly recovered cases continue to outpace new confirmed ones.

The country reported 14 new cases, pushing the total cases to 8,529, the Health Ministry said. Three are imported cases and of the local transmissions, seven are foreign nationals and four are Malaysians.

Cambodia confirmed a new imported case, bringing the total infections in the kingdom to 129, according to a health ministry's statement.

Cases in Indonesia rose by 1,331 within one day to 42,762, with the death toll adding by 63 to 2,339, Achmad Yurianto, a health ministry official, said at a press conference.

The number of cases in the Philippines rose to 27,799 after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 562 more infections. The DOH said in its bulletin that the number of recoveries climbed to 7,090 after 270 more patients recovered.

South Korea reported 59 more cases, raising the total number of infections to 12,257. The daily caseload rose above 50 in six days. Of the new cases, eight were imported from overseas, lifting the combined figure to 1,379.

Small cluster infections were still found linked to religious gatherings, nursing homes, indoor sports facilities, health product retailer and distribution centers.

New Zealand reported one new case of COVID-19 who was a traveler from Pakistan, after two cases were reported earlier this week, the first in 24 days, with a health official apologizing for the cases that "have upset people and shaken people's confidence."