(Reuters) - The death toll from the spread of the coronavirus in the United States approached over 200,000 and European countries mulled tightening restrictions to curb a sharp resurgence in cases, while global stocks hit their lowest in seven weeks on Monday.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
* For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread, open tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7
* For a U.S.-focused tracker with a state-by-state and county map, open tmsnrt.rs/2w7hX9T
* Madrid’s regional government chief requested the army’s help to fight the coronavirus surge in the Spanish capital.
* Greece reported 453 new cases of COVID-19 infections, a new daily record since the start of the outbreak in the country.
* Up to 200,000 Hungarians could become simultaneously infected with coronavirus under the government’s worst-case scenario, Prime Minister Viktor Orban told parliament.
* British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was pondering a second national lockdown as an accelerating outbreak threatened to destroy any shoots of economic recovery and send millions back into isolation.
* Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis nominated a top epidemiologist to become health minister after the previous minister quit over a sharp rise in infections.
* The number of novel coronavirus infections in Iran has risen by 3,341 in the past 24 hours, the highest daily tally since early June.
* Iraq is to bar entry to religious pilgrims, its government health committee said, just weeks ahead of a Shi’ite Muslim pilgrimage which is the largest annual religious gathering in the world.
* India reopened the Taj Mahal after six months, with the first visitors trickling into the famous monument as authorities reported 86,961 new infections across the country, with no signs of a peak yet.
* Australia reported its smallest daily increase in new infections in more than three months, but authorities in the nation’s virus hotspot of Victoria said they could not hasten the easing of curbs.
* New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern lifted all coronavirus restrictions across the country, except in second-wave hotspot Auckland.
* The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention took down its guidance warning on possible airborne transmission of the novel coronavirus, saying that the draft recommendation was posted in error.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Nigerian health workers who went on strike in mid-September for a hazard allowance for treating coronavirus patients returned to work, their union said, without their demands being met.
* Some 156 nations have joined a global scheme for fair distribution of future vaccines against COVID-19, an alliance led by the World Health Organization (WHO) said, but superpowers China and the United States did not sign up.
* VBI Vaccines Inc said it had entered into an agreement with Canada to develop a potential vaccine for COVID-19 by 2022 through mid-stage trials conducted exclusively in the country.
* Stocks across the world hit their lowest in seven weeks and other risk assets sold off on lingering concern over renewed lockdown measures in Europe and the UK, as well as the United States’ inability to agree on a stimulus for millions of unemployed.
Compiled by Devika Syamnath, Linda Pasquini and Amy Caren Daniel; Edited by Shounak Dasgupta, Ed Osmond and Sriraj Kalluvila
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