Coronavirus live updates: Nations debate easing lockdown

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This is CNBC’s live blog covering all the latest news on the coronavirus outbreak. All times below are Eastern time. This blog will be updated throughout the day as the news breaks.

  • Global cases: More than 2,259,317
  • Global deaths: At least 154,694
  • US cases: More than 706,779
  • US deaths: At least 37,079

The data above was compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

8:25 am: Nations debate easing lockdown as economic hardship grows

People walk past a red-and-white police warning tape in Plainpalais place in Geneva on April 16, 2020, during the lockdown due to the novel coronavirus, Covid-19.

Fabrice Coffrini | AFP via Getty Images

Facing rising unemployment and with many of their citizens struggling to make ends meet, governments around the world are wrestling with when and how to ease the restrictions designed to control the coronavirus pandemic. Mandatory lockdowns to stop the spread of the new virus, which has so far infected more than 2.2 million people and for which there is no vaccine, have brought widespread hardship.

In a joint statement, a group of 13 countries including Canada, Brazil, Italy, and Germany called for global co-operation to lessen the economic impact of the pandemic.

“It is vital that we work together to save lives and livelihoods,” they said.

The group, which also includes Britain, France Indonesia, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, South Korea, Singapore, and Turkey, said it was committed to “work with all countries to co-ordinate on public health, travel, trade, economic and financial measures in order to minimize disruptions and recover stronger.” —Associated Press

8:15 am: Swiss death toll reaches 1,111, with infections rising to 27,404

The Swiss death toll from the new coronavirus has reached 1,111 people, the country’s public health agency said, rising from 1,059 a day earlier.

The number of people showing positive tests for the disease increased to 27,404, the agency said, up from 27,078. —Reuters

8:00 am: Netherlands cases cross 31,000, with 142 new deaths

The Netherlands has reported an additional 1,140 new coronavirus cases, health authorities said on Saturday, bringing the total number of Covid-19 infections up to 31,589. 

Dutch health officials also recorded 142 new deaths as a result of the coronavirus, Reuters reported. — Sam Meredith

7:20 am: Spain’s death toll tops 20,000

Spain’s coronavirus death toll has climbed to 20,043, the country’s health ministry said on Saturday, according to multiple media reports, up from 19,478 on Friday.

Second only to the U.S. worldwide, Spain has recorded the most number of coronavirus cases in Europe. — Sam Meredith

A woman wearing a sanitary mask as a preventive measure, leaving the train during the first day of work for non-essential sectors. Barcelona faces its 31st day of house confinement due to the contagion of Covid-19.

Paco Freire | SOPA Images | LightRocket via Getty Images

6:35 am: Nigerian president’s chief of staff dies after contracting Covid-19, spokesman says

The chief of staff to Nigeria’s president, Abba Kyari, has died after contracting the coronavirus, the government’s official spokesperson confirmed via Twitter on Saturday.

Kyari, who was reportedly in his 70s, had been receiving treatment for Covid-19 but died on Friday, presidency spokesperson Garba Shehu said. 

To date, the West African country has recorded 493 cases of the coronavirus, with 17 deaths nationwide, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. — Sam Meredith

5:40 am: Iran records an additional 73 deaths

Iran has confirmed 73 further fatalities as a result of the coronavirus over the last 24 hours, Reuters reported Saturday, citing a health ministry official. 

To date, the Islamic Republic has recorded 80,868 infections of Covid-19. — Sam Meredith

A man wears a respiratory mask after deaths and new confirmed cases revealed from the coronavirus in Qom, Iran on February 25, 2020.

Stringer | Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

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