Italy is now the country with the highest number of people to die from covid-19, surpassing the Chinese death toll by 160. The Italian total currently stands at 3,405. Italy's government says it will extend the nationwide lock-down, warning that life would not immediately return to normal even after the worst was over.
Germany is preparing to deploy military personnel if their healthcare system becomes overwhelmed by the covid-19 outbreak. The Defense Minister said the army would be able to protect infrastructure and distribute medical equipment. The number of confirmed cases in Germany has reached more than 14,000.
President Trump says that a drug that's been used to treat Malaria has now been approved to treat covid-19. The medicine chloroquine has recently been given to patients in China and France with some indication that it might help.
Chile's Congress has decided to postpone for 6 months a referendum on whether to rewrite the country's constitution as the number of coronavirus case there increases. The vote was meant to take place on April 26.
The Brazilian government has announced the closure of all land borders for the next 15 days as the coronavirus continues to spread across the country. The only exception is the busy border between Brazil and Uruguay which will remain open.
Iranian officials are appealing to people not to travel in the eve of the Persian New Year holiday in an attempt to curb the spread of the coronavirus, but many are reported to have ignored the warnings.
In other news, conservationists are hailing the tentative recovery of Africa's critically endangered black rhinos. The latest figures show there's been a modest annual increase in the black rhino population of the last 6 years.
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