Italy's daily coronavirus death toll climbs by 602
ROME (Reuters) - Deaths from the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy rose by 602 on Tuesday, up from 566 the day before, posting a second consecutive daily increase, but new infections slowed to 2,972 from 3,153, seeing the smallest daily tally since March 13. The total death toll since the outbreak came to light on Feb. 21 rose to 21,067, the Civil Protection Agency said, the second highest in the world after that of the United States.
ROME (Reuters) - Deaths from the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy rose by 602 on Tuesday, up from 566 the day before, posting a second consecutive daily increase, but new infections slowed to 2,972 from 3,153, seeing the smallest daily tally since March 13.
The total death toll since the outbreak came to light on Feb. 21 rose to 21,067, the Civil Protection Agency said, the second highest in the world after that of the United States.
The number of officially confirmed cases climbed to 162,488, the third highest global tally behind those of the United States and Spain.
The euro zone's third largest economy is in tatters after more than a month of a nationwide lockdown to try to curb the contagion, with most businesses closed except those considered essential to the country's supply chain.
The International Monetary Fund forecast on Tuesday that Italian gross domestic product would shrink 9.1% this year.
That compared with a projected 7.5% drop for the euro zone as a whole and would be the steepest contraction of any large European country.
Italy, which has been the euro zone's most sluggish economy since the start of monetary union, was already teetering on the brink of recession before the coronavirus hit, with GDP falling 0.3% in the last quarter of 2019 from the previous three months.
The Civil Protection Agency said there were 3,186 people in intensive care on Tuesday against 3,260 on Monday -- an 11th consecutive daily decline.
Of those originally infected, 37,130 were declared recovered against 35,435 a day earlier.
(Reporting by Gavin Jones;editing by Jonathan Oatis)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.