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Coronavirus live: latest Covid-19 news - Sunday 19 April

End of today's live blog

Thanks for joining us today. You can keep up with the latest news for Monday 20 April here.

Covid-19 (at a glance figures)


Canada: total confirmed cases 34,356 / total Covid-19 deaths: 1,400

Australia: total confirmed cases 6,547 / total Covid-19 deaths: 67

UK: total confirmed cases 115,314 / total Covid-19 deaths: 15,464

India: total confirmed cases 15,722 / total Covid-19 deaths: 521

Source: Johns Hopkins University

US press briefing

Watch Donald Trump and his team of experts in today's daily Covid-19 brefing.

Clearing up the confusion on the US stimulus check

There have been numerous stories doing the rounds on the US payments that have been sent out, including whether or not they need to be paid back after the crisis. We aim to clear them up...

Skin rash a potential Covid-19 symptom, doctors say

Although it is not listed as a coronavirus symptom by the World Health Organization, skin irritation is being put forward by medical experts as a sign of Covid-19.

Full story:

Face mask fail has social media giggling

Breaking: former Leeds Utd owner Covid-19 positive

Kenya sees three politicians arrested for lockdown partying

A total of 17 people were arrested at a party by Kenyan police including three politicians. This happened at a club in Nyeri town, Kenya, during the coronavirus lockdown.

The politicians who were members of the County Assembly (MCA) were locked inside a mansion in the Kingongo area, Nyeri County when they were caught on Friday, April 17. They were part of the 17 revellers who were nabbed at the house which they had reportedly converted into a club.

Full story

When legends say thanks

Roger Federer, arguably the greatest tennis player of all time, sends a wave of thanks to the frontline medical teams.

Police officers in Spain suspended for violent lockdown enforcement

Two police officers in Girona have been suspended after using excessive force on citizens found to be flouting Spain's lockdown measures:

PPE plane from China lands in Glasgow

Glasgow's Prestwick Airport has had a welcome visitor from China on Sunday evening...or should be say more than 10 million of them!

"It's only half time"

New York governor Andrew Cuomo says the US state is only at “half time” in the coronavirus pandemic, but added that the outbreak appears to be “past the high point” as the death toll in the area over the past 24 hours fell to 507.

"If the data holds and if this trend holds, we are past the high point and all indications at this point are that we are on a descent. Whether or not the descent continues depends on what we do," Cuomo told his daily briefing on Sunday. 

“It’s no time to get cocky. It’s no time to get arrogant,” he said. “It’s only half time.”

How H1N1 cases and deaths compare to Covid-19

A decade ago, the H1N1 virus infected an estimated 24% of the global population during a pandemic that lasted 19 months. So how much deadlier is Covid-19?

Full story:

Italy lockdown no issue for two tennis players

Two women in Liguria in northwest Italy found a novel way to get some exercise during the Covid-19 lockdown with some rooftop tennis across buildings:

Premier League Brighton's stadium becomes Covid-19 testing centre

The Amex Stadium, the home of Brighton & Hove Albion, has been turned into a major drive-in coronavirus testing centre, the English Premier League club revealed on Sunday. 

“It is hugely impressive, and a great triumph of both teamwork and hard work,” Brighton chief executive Paul Barber said. “The Amex will be the biggest testing site anywhere on the south coast, and will be used for self-testing and assisted testing.”

There have so far been around 120,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK, with just over 16,000 deaths in total.

Virtual tribute held on 25th anniversary of Oklahoma bomb attack

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bomb attack was today marked with a special online ceremony, rather than the usual remembrance event at its memorial site.

The pre-recorded broadcast included 168 seconds of silence in tribute to the 168 people killed on 19 April 1995, while the victims’ names were also each read out.

"This is not necessarily how we expected to come together today, but this remembrance is no less real and no less important," Oklahoma City mayor David Holt said. 

"The anniversary we mark today and what 19 April 1995 meant to our city and our nation transcends the challenges of 19 April 2020.

"Nevertheless, the idea that sometimes certain events force change and reflection upon us is a phenomenon as timeless as the human experience."

Flattening the curve is viewed by epidemiologists as the key to beating the coronavirus pandemic and Australia has announced success in doing so.

Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic

All the information you need to understand the coronavirus and ways to stay safe during the Covid-19 pandemic.


Roma players agree to hand over wages for club employees

AS Roma players and staff have offered four months' salary to help the club and all non-playing staff through the coronavirus crisis. 

New York and New Jersey have been hit hardest by Covid-19, while some less populated states remain relatively untouched but are there any coronavirus free areas?

One World hits the right notes

The One World: Together at Home concert organised by the Global Citizen movement and the World Health Organization with Lady Gaga acting as curator has raised over $100m for the WHO in the fight against Covid-19, CNN reports. 

Another nice story at a time when the world needs more of them

Stories from the front lines of one of Madrid's busiest hospitals

New Zealanders have been asked to keep diary of daily movements

New Zealanders have been asked to keep a diary of their daily movement to make contact tracing easier. South Korea have been applauded for their response to the coronavirus pandemic with very struct contact tracing. It was said to have prevented a situation similar to that in Spain and Italy. Its importance has been taken on board by New Zealand now too with the Primer Minister asking citizens to make it easier for them to de-escalate lockdown measures.

“I would ask New Zealanders to think about doing that. Just keeping a quick note of where you’ve been, and who you’ve been with,” Ardern said. “It will not only help them, it will help us.

“If you imagine, even asking someone six days later to account every movement over a period of time, it’s an incredibly hard task. So I would ask New Zealanders to have new practices, new things that they do at the end of the day.

“The better that we are able to do ... the sooner we can move through the down the alert levels and the sooner life feels more normal,” she said.

Spain's daily death figures drop

According to new figures reported by El País, Spain's daily death total dropped to 410 in the last 24 hours. That is the smallest number of daily deaths since March 22nd according to figures. Spain has been one of the most affected areas in the world with over 20,000 deaths and almost 100,000 people infected. Pedro Sanchéz, the country's prime minister, announced that he would try to extend the lockdown measures until May 10 but said that kids under 12 would be allowed out to exercise for short spells.

China facing new outbreak fears

A new outbreak in Harbin, central China, has caused new lockdowns in the country. China was on the path to what looked like complete recovery but the newest outbreak has caused them to reverse course on lockdown measures. A student returning from the US has been located as the source of 40 new cases.

“A second wave attack could be coming in a way that authorities don’t expect,” said Huang Yanzhong, a senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations


Sunday Times damning report of Johnson's incompetence

Boris Johnson continues to recover from coronavirus after spending a number of nights in intensive care. He will be faced with several questions over a brutal report in the Sunday Times that outlines his government's slow reaction to the pandemic. Sources in the article speak about how they watched from Wuhan as the crisis spread and Johnson, the Primer Minister, went on a 12-day working holiday in the English countryside. 

Johnson famously bragged about shaking everyone's hand during a hospital visit as he seemingly played down the threat the virus caused. That was before he tested positive and need his life saved.

Indian Navy potential outbreak

26 sailors in India’s navy have tested positive for coronavirus according to the Financial Times. French and US navies have dealt with their own outbreaks but India say they are still ‘operationally prepared as always’ and have yet to announce a positive test on board any of their vessels.

Australia demands coronavirus enquiry, adding to pressure on China

Australia on Sunday added to growing pressure on China over its handling of the novel coronavirus, questioning its transparency and demanding an international investigation into the origins of the virus and how it spread.

The coronavirus is believed to have emerged in a market selling wildlife in the central Chinese city of Wuhan late last year. It has spread around the world infecting some 2.3 million people and killing nearly 160,000 of them, according to Reuters calculations.

Global coronavirus update at 08:00 CEST Sunday 19 April

According to the latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University, 2,330,259 cases have been detected worldwide, with 160,917 deaths and 598,228 people now recovered.

Some headlines include:

China reported 16 new confirmed coronavirus cases on April 18, the lowest since March 17 and down from 27 a day earlier, according to data published on Sunday.

Spain have announced a further lockdown until 10 May but kids will be allowed out for a walk starting on April 26th.

European coronavirus deaths are approaching 100,000.


Positive cases in Japan total hit 10,000-mark

Japan’s total number of positive Covid-19 infections broke through the 10,000 barrier yesterday just as the country experienced the first weekend of lockdown restrictions. The total number of cases as of midday local time stood at 10,296 with around a third of that number registered in the capital, Tokyo. Other, heavily-affected areas  include Osaka, Kanagawa and Chiba.

A total of 222 people have died of Covid-19 illnesses in Japan since the crisis started. 

The total reached around 10,100 by Saturday afternoon and excluded cases from the Diamond Princess cruise ship quarantine.

Tokyo, which has more infections than any prefecture, logged 181 new cases Saturday, the metropolitan government said after reporting a single-day high of 201 on Friday.

Science getting closer to developing Covid-19 vaccine

Professor Sir John Bell has told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that human trials on a potential coronavirus vaccine could be completed by late summer. Read more here:



Stars on board for Together at Home gig

Staying on a musical theme, the One World: Together at Home concert, organised by Lady Gaga and which was streamed live around the globe this weekend, ended just a couple of hours ago. Taking part in the concert were The Killers, The Rolling Stones, Common, John Legend, Jessie J, Jennifer Hudson, Coldplay and Stevie Wonder amongst others - performing from their own homes.

Proceeds from the concert will go to the Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the WHO. 

Bass player who played in David Bowie's band at Live Aid dies of coronavirus

Musician Matthew Seligman who was a member of the Soft Boys, Thompson Twins and collaborated with Thomas Dolby passed away at the weekend after testing positive for coronavirus. He was 65. Seligman, together with Dolby, formed part of David Bowie's backing band at the Live Aid concert at Wembley in 1985. 


Prince Harry praises Captain Tom's fund-raising feats

Prince Harry has voiced his great admiration for 99-year-old army veteran Captain Tom who completed 100 lengths of his garden with a zimmer frame  to raise 25 million pounds for NHS charities. He said: “Congratulations to Tom. What he’s done is utterly amazing. It’s not just what he’s done but it’s the reaction that people have had as well – just wonderfully British.”


Boris Johnson ready to return

After overcoming a nasty bout of coronavirus infection which kept him in intensive care for two days, British PM Boris Johnson is reportedly now right as rain and ready to be more involved in the nation's decision-making which has been handled by his deputy Dominic Raab while he has been convalescing.

The Sunday Telegraph reports that the PM will giving orders from his retreat at Chequers until he feels fit enough to return to Downing Street.

Spain to extend state of alarm to 9 May

Spanish PM Pedro Sánchez confirmed yesterday that the current lockdown will be extended by a further two weeks.

He has also said that children will now be allowed to leave the house and go outside for exercise (with sensible distancing rules) from 27 April. A boost for parents around the country.


Spain passes 20,000 deaths

According to the Johns Hopkins University, Spain's official number of deaths due to Covid-19 has surpassed 20,000, as the number of confirmed cases in the country closes in on 200,000.

Only the USA (nearly 38,000) and Italy (23,000) have reported more at this point.


The worst pandemics and epidemics in history

In five months, the Covid-19 pandemic has claimed 158,691 lives globally. But the world has suffered other deadlier pandemics, epidemics and plagues through history. Here are the most famous cases.

Covid-19 (at a glance figures)


Canada: total confirmed cases 34,356 / total Covid-19 deaths: 1,400

Australia: total confirmed cases 6,547 / total Covid-19 deaths: 67

UK: total confirmed cases 115,314 / total Covid-19 deaths: 15,464

India: total confirmed cases 15,722 / total Covid-19 deaths: 521

Source: Johns Hopkins University

Hello and welcome to our live coronavirus blog. Over the course of the day, we will be bringing you the latest information, breaking news and data relating to the Covid-19 pandemic from around the world on 19 April. At the time of writing, the virus has claimed almost 160,000 lives with over 2.3 million positive cases currently confirmed around the world.