WORLD Indian disaster again breaks pandemic records


Indian disaster again breaks pandemic records


22:55, May 07, 2021

Indian Muslims, some wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus, leave after offering last Friday prayers of Ramadan at Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad, India, Friday, May 7, 2021. (Photo: AP)

India -- which now accounts for nearly half of the world's new Covid cases -- broke a series of grim records for a third week.

But beyond Asia the pace of the pandemic slowed.

Here is the global state of play according to a specialised AFP database.

- Asia increase -

The number of daily cases globally dropped slightly for the first time in 10 weeks, to an average of 789,500 per day, four percent less than last week.

But in India cases continued to surge, up 10 percent to an average of 385,000 new infections a day.

Across Asia new cases were also up 10 percent.

Elsewhere the caseload continued to decline, by a quarter in Africa and Europe, 13 percent in the Middle East, 12 percent in the United States and Canada, 12 percent in Oceania, and 8 percent in Latin America and the Caribbean.

- Spikes: The India effect -

For the third week in a row the epidemic is spreading fastest in India's northern neighbour Nepal.

It had twice as many cases as the previous week.

India's neighbour to the south, Sri Lanka, was second (among the countries which have recorded at least 1,000 cases daily) with 82 percent more.

South Africa had a third more, followed by Bahrain with 15 percent more and Malaysia with 14 percent more.

The number of confirmed cases only reflects a fraction of the actual number of infections, as different countries have varying counting practices and levels of testing.

- Biggest drops -

The biggest drops were in Ethiopia, where new cases nearly halved, followed by Ukraine with 46 percent less and Bulgaria with 44 percent less.

- Most cases -

After India, the countries recording the highest number of new cases this week were Brazil, which saw a slight drop to 59,000 per day, the US which recorded 45,600 (down 13 percent), Turkey (down 34 percent, 27,000 cases) and Argentina (down 11 percent, 20,100 cases).

On a per capita basis the two countries topping the table by far with 1,223 cases and 668 cases respectively per 100,000 of the population are the Seychelles and the Maldives.

Yet the two Indian Ocean archipelagos are among the most vaccinated countries in the world, notably the Seychelles where 60 percent of its population is fully vaccinated. Both are using Sinopharm and AstraZeneca jabs.

- India has most deaths -

India also mourned the most deaths over the past week with 3,619 per day on average, ahead of Brazil (2,252), the US (710), Colombia (455) and Argentina (394).

Globally, the number of daily deaths dropped by three percent this week to 12,860 per day. They remain lower than at the beginning of the year when they skirted 15,000 per day.

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