The Latest: South Africa cases pass 35K, Cape Town a worry

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The Latest on the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19 causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death.

TOP OF THE HOUR:

— Protest of police use-of-force held in Paris despite virus ban

— Kenya prosecutor orders arrest of officer in death of boy shot during curfew

— Mayor says Chicago will proceed with easing lockdown despite vandalism, protests

— Iraq sees record daily cases, officials cite wider testing


PARIS — Thousands of people are defying a virus-linked police ban in Paris and have converged on the French capital’s main courthouse for a demonstration to show solidarity with U.S. protesters and to denounce the death of a black man in French police custody.

The demonstration in Paris and similar protests in other French cities on Tuesday were organized to honor Frenchman Adama Traore, who died shortly after his arrest in 2016 and to support Americans demonstrating against the death of George Floyd’ in the U.S. state of Minnesota.

Paris police banned the gathering a few hours before it was supposed to start, citing virus restrictions forbidding gatherings of more than 10 people.

The circumstances of Traore’s death are still under investigation after four years of conflicting medical reports.

The lawyer for two of the three police officers involved says it didn’t result from the conditions of his arrest but factors such as a preexisting medical condition.

Traore’s family says he died from asphyxiation because of police tactics — and that his last words were “I can’t breathe.”


NAIROBI, Kenya — Kenya’s director of public prosecution has ordered the arrest and prosecution of a police officer in the death of 13-year-old Yasin Hussein Moyo.

The boy was shot dead while standing on his family’s balcony in March as police moved through his crowded neighborhood enforcing a coronavirus curfew.

Police at first said he was hit by a stray bullet. The death caused an outcry.

Also Tuesday, the Independent Policing Oversight Authority, established by Parliament, said 15 deaths and 31 incidents in which people sustained injuries have been directly linked to actions of police officers during curfew enforcement.


CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot says Chicago will proceed with its next stage of reopening after coronavirus stay-at-home orders despite days of unrest and violence.

Vandalism and violent clashes have followed peaceful protests citywide after George Floyd’s death. Numerous businesses have been destroyed. City crews helped secure about 175 buildings, many in neighborhood commercial corridors.

Still, Lightfoot says the overwhelming response from business owners has been that reopening should continue Wednesday as planned. That’s when restaurants, salons and other businesses can open with restrictions.

Chicago has been under strict restrictions since March. Its reopening plan is tied declining COVID-19 infections.


BAGHDAD — Iraq’s Health Ministry is reporting a record-breaking single-day spike in confirmed coronavirus cases that it says resulted from increased testing.

At least 519 new cases were confirmed Tuesday, bringing the country’s total to 7,387, according to a statement from the Health Ministry. Iraq has reported a total of 235 virus-related deaths.

The number of confirmed cases in Iraq tripled in the last two weeks as more people were tested. Thousands more are being tested on a daily basis, according to daily government reports. The Health Ministry said at least 3,000 were tested nationwide in the previous 24 hours.

Since he was sworn in last month, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi has reinforced full-day curfews, prohibited non-essential businesses from operating and banned large crowds from gathering.

Iraq faces shortages of hospital beds and ventilators. Health professionals have warned that a flareup in cases could be catastrophic for the country’s health system.


ROME — Italy’s Lombardy region has continued to register by far the highest day-to-day increase in coronavirus cases after emerging as the epicenter of the nation’s outbreak in February.

The Health Ministry reported Tuesday evening that Lombardy accounted for 187 of Italy’s 318 new confirmed cases in the previous 24 hours. Total confirmed cases now number 233,515, although authorities say many people with mild symptoms may have had the virus but never underwent testing.

Italy also reported 55 more virus-related deaths in the same 24-hour period, raising the national death toll from the pandemic to 33,530.

Since many elderly people who died during the outbreak in nursing homes or in their own homes weren’t tested, authorities acknowledge that the actual death toll is likely much higher.

A government-ordered ban on travel between regions is set to end on Wednesday. Italy also will start allowing in tourists from most of Europe.


KARACHI, Pakistan — Two Pakistani lawmakers have died after testing positive for the coronavirus amid a spike in COVID-19 cases and deaths.

Officials said Tuesday that Munir Khan Orakzai, a lawmaker in the lower house of parliament, died in northwest Pakistan. They said a minister in the southern Sindh province, Ghulam Murtaza Baloch, died at a hospital in the port city of Karachi.

Their deaths came weeks after the first virus-related death of a lawmaker in Pakistan took place in the eastern city of Lahore.

Pakistan on Tuesday reported 78 deaths in the past 24 hours from the country’s outbreak.

Critics blame Prime Minister Imran Khan for an increase in deaths and infections. THey accuse him of easing restrictions last month at a time when there was a need to enforce a stricter lockdown to contain the spread of the virus.

Pakistan has recorded a total of 76,398 confirmed cases and 1,621 deaths since February.


MADRID — Spain’s Health Ministry says it recorded no deaths from COVID-19 for a second day in a row.

The latest official data reported Tuesday showed an increase in new confirmed cases, however — 137 in the previous 24 hours compared with an increase of 71 cases between Sunday and Monday.

Madrid accounted for over half of the new cases, with 73. The Spanish capital has been the area of the country hardest-hit by the coronavirus.

The head of Spain’s emergency response called the falling death rate “very encouraging.”

Fernando Simón added that the number of patients being treated in intensive care units has also been declining, with only nine people admitted to ICUs over the past seven days.

Spain’s official national death toll from the pandemic is 27,127, while the country has almost 240,000 confirmed cases.


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Dubai has announced that shopping malls and the private sector can operate at full capacity starting Wednesday following weeks of restrictions and curfews.

Still, people must adhere to social distancing and wear face masks in public. Some of Dubai’s largest malls have already installed thermal scanners at gates to check the temperatures of all entering.

In recent days, Dubai — known for its sprawling malls, shopping and luxury hotels — has also opened some public beaches, parks and gyms. Mosques, public pools, amusement parks, nurseries and schools remain closed.

The capital of the United Arab Emirates, meanwhile, began restricting movement in and out of the city for a week starting Tuesday. Abu Dhabi said the move is aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 there.


ATHENS, Greece — Greek authorities have temporarily suspended flights from Qatar until June 15, after 12 people on a flight from Doha tested positive for the coronavirus.

Authorities have quarantined all 91 passengers from the flight that landed Monday.

International flights to Greece are currently only allowed into Athens, with all passengers subject to compulsory coronavirus tests.

The Civil Protection Agency said Tuesday nine of the passengers who tested positive were Pakistani nationals with residence permits in Greece, two were Greek citizens coming from Australia and one was a Japanese national from a Greek-Japanese family.

Greece currently has a very low coronavirus rate, with 179 deaths and just over 2,900 confirmed positive cases.

Health authorities announced zero deaths on Tuesday, and 19 new confirmed positive cases, including the 12 from the Doha flight.


ROME — Hundreds of demonstrators have gathered in Rome shunning masks to protest against the Italian government’s measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Members of a marginal political movement created last year by a retired Carabinieri general have emerged as a virus-denial camp in Italy, the first Western country to be hit by the global pandemic.

The leader of the so-called Orange Vests told the protest crowd assembled in the Piazza del Popolo on Tuesday that children shouldn’t be made to wear masks and he threatened to ‘’slap’’ anyone who did.

Antonio Pappalardo added that he refuses to wear a mask himself and said: ‘’These lungs mine. I will take care of my lungs. Breathing is sacred.’’

The people packing the square didn’t adhere to social-distancing guidelines set by the government.

Other speakers at the protest asserted that the pandemic ‘’never existed’’ and alleged that politicians had played it up to enhance their own powers.


TOKYO — The governor of Tokyo has issued a coronavirus alert for the Japanese capital amid worries of a resurgence of infections only a week after a state of emergency ended.

Governor Yuriko Koike issued a “Tokyo alert” on Tuesday after 34 new cases were confirmed in the city, where confirmed infections had slowed to a few per day in late May.

Koike said: “The alert is to precisely inform the people of the status of infections and to advise caution.”

Lighting on Tokyo’s Rainbow Bridge will be changed from rainbow-colored to red as a sign of alert. However, the alert does not mean restrictions that just got eased will be reimposed immediately.

Under the second phase of a three-part plan for resuming business activity, Tokyo’s theaters, fitness gyms and other commercial facilities reopened. Night clubs, karaoke parlors and other highest-risk establishments are still closed. shut observing shutdown requests.


MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin has instructed his government to take quick steps to repair economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic.

Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin reported to Putin on Tuesday that the Cabinet’s plan contains measures designed to stimulate economic growth, raise incomes and reduce unemployment. It envisages spending 5 trillion rubles (about $73 billion) until December 2021.

A partial economic shutdown that Putin ordered in late March to stem the country’s outbreak badly hurt an economy already battered by a sharp drop in oil prices.

The Russian leader says the nation is now past the peak of contagion, allowing regional officials to gradually ease the restrictions. However, some experts warned that a daily increase of about 9,000 confirmed cases makes a quick lifting of the lockdown dangerous.

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LONDON — A leading epidemiologist said the coronavirus outbreak in the U.K. is unlikely to worsen during the summer but that the outlook from September was “very unclear.”

Professor Neil Ferguson from Imperial College London said he expects levels of coronavirus transmissions and cases to “remain relatively flat between now and September, short of very big policy changes or behavior changes in the community.”

He told a committee of lawmakers in the House of Lords on Tuesday that the “real uncertainty” will be in September.

Ferguson resigned from his position as a government adviser last month after revelations that he broke social-distancing rules.

A coronavirus lockdown is being eased across the U.K., most quickly in England, raising concerns among many health officials of a potential second spike in infections.

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JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s total confirmed coronavirus cases have jumped to more than 35,000 while the province anchored by Cape Town remains a worrying hot spot with more than 23,000.

South Africa has the most confirmed virus cases of any nation in Africa. The Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the total number across the continent is now above 152,000.

South Africa took another step in easing lockdown restrictions on Monday with alcohol sales allowed again. Authorities have warned that the rate of new cases is expected to quicken.

South Africa has seen cases double roughly every 12 days while cases in the Western Cape have been doubling every nine days.

A major test lies ahead this weekend as places of worship are allowed to operate with a limit of 50 people, despite warnings from some religious leaders about the risk of spreading the virus.

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JOHANNESBURG — Africa’s coronavirus cases have surpassed 150,000 while the World Health Organization says the continent of 1.3 billion people is still the region least affected.

Concerns remain high as some of Africa’s 54 countries struggle with when to reopen schools and parts of their economies.

Rwanda, the first nation in sub-Saharan Africa to impose a lockdown, this week slowed the easing of it after reporting its first COVID-19 death.

More than 4,300 deaths have been confirmed across the continent as local transmission of the virus increases and testing materials and medical equipment remain in short supply in many places.


BERLIN — Berlin’s top health official says she is appalled by a weekend gathering in support of the city’s shuttered clubs that brought up to 1,500 people together and which organizers ended because participants weren’t keeping to distancing rules.

The demonstrators gathered on a city canal Sunday in 300 to 400 small boats and on the banks, with loud music. The city’s health minister, Dilek Kalayci, said Tuesday she understands nightclubs’ financial difficulties but noted that aid is available and said the weekend event was “grossly negligent” while the pandemic continues. She said “this is not the time for parties.”

Germany started easing its coronavirus restrictions in late April and is continuing to do so despite some concern over local outbreaks linked to slaughterhouses, a church service and a restaurant.

In the latest case, at least 68 people tested positive in the central city of Goettingen after private family parties.


HARARE, Zimbabwe — State media say Zimbabwe has confirmed its first coronavirus cases in prisons, with four inmates and two guards testing positive.

The Herald newspaper says authorities declared the prisons in Plumtree, which borders Botswana, and in Beitbridge, which borders South Africa, as “no-go areas.” Authorities also have suspended movement out of prisons countrywide.

Zimbabwe’s cases more than doubled in the past week to over 200, with most new infections at centers where people crossing the border are quarantined.

Zimbabwe earlier released more than 4,000 prisoners to ease overcrowding in facilities where health systems are weak. About 18,000 people are still behind bars.


Follow AP news coverage of the coronavirus pandemic at https://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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