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The World Health Organization is holding a briefing Friday on the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 30.2 million people worldwide and killed at least 946,800 people, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Parts of Europe are reporting worrying resurgences of the virus that have seen France and Spain both hit record highs of new coronavirus cases. Hospitalizations and deaths are rising in those countries as well, but slowly, as the virus is now spreading among more younger people.
"There are some worrying trends that we're starting to see," Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, head of the WHO's emerging diseases and zoonosis unit, said Wednesday. "What is really worrying I think for us is that we're not only seeing an increase in the case numbers, but we're seeing an increase in the hospitalizations. We're seeing increases in ICUs."
Israel on Friday entered a second nationwide lockdown, shuttering restaurants, hotels, gyms and more, amid soaring new cases and as the Jewish High Holiday season begins. WHO's regional director for Europe, Dr. Hans Kluge, on Thursday called the rise in cases across the continent "a very serious situation."
"More than half of European countries have reported a greater-than-10% increase in cases in the past two weeks. Of those countries, seven have seen newly reported cases increase more than twofold in the same period," he said.