April 26 coronavirus news

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4:54 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

Spain's children are allowed out of their homes for the first time since lockdown

Spanish citizens could be allowed to go outside to play sports and walk with family members in early May
Spanish citizens could be allowed to go outside to play sports and walk with family members in early May Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images

Spain's children are finally allowed to leave their homes for the first time in over six weeks after the government announced a relaxation of the strictest confinement measures in Europe.

In the capital Madrid, parents were seen by CNN venturing out with their children in tow on Sunday morning.

Kids up to the age of 14-years-old will now be able to play outside for one hour a day while accompanied by an adult, according to a decree by Spain’s Official State Gazette (BOE).

The guidelines also stressed that children should be in groups no larger than three alongside one adult, and should not venture further than one kilometer (0.62 miles) from their home. They are also allowed to bring their toys.

This comes as the daily coronavirus death rate has dropped in the country, which also has the world’s second-highest number of coronavirus cases (223,759), after the United States, according to Johns Hopkins University (JHU).

Gradual easing: In a speech on Saturday evening, Spain Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced he will present his plan for the "de-escalation phase" in his country next Tuesday.

Sánchez told Spaniards that the country has had a small and modest victory, but there is a still a long way to go before they win the battle against coronavirus.

The PM also announced that if Spain continues to show improvement, citizens will be allowed to go outside to play sports and walk with family members in early May. The country's health minister will oversee the arrangements and guidance, he said.

The process would be gradual, "asymmetrical" and coordinated, Sánchez emphasized.

4:33 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

New Delhi hospital closed after a nurse tests positive for coronavirus

From CNN's Rishabh Pratap in New Delhi

An ambulance passes through a disinfecting tunnel at the Hindu Rao Hospital in New Dehli on April 12.
An ambulance passes through a disinfecting tunnel at the Hindu Rao Hospital in New Dehli on April 12. Sanjeev Verma/Hindustan Times/Getty Images

Hindu Rao, one of the largest hospitals in the Indian capital New Delhi, has been closed for a deep clean, after a nurse there tested positive for coronavirus.

"Since she has been on duty in various locations within the campus over the last two weeks, we are closing down the hospital till we fully sanitize and complete contact tracing," said Varsha Joshi, commissioner for the North Delhi Municipal Corporation. He added that a thorough inquiry will be conducted.

The hospital will only be functional again after the sanitization work finishes, per Health Ministry guidelines, she added. 

Delhi has reported 3,424 positive coronavirus cases, including 53 deaths.

4:19 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

India's Modi says "all of us are soldiers" in fight against coronavirus

From CNN's Rishabh Pratap in New Delhi

An Indian policeman walks past an art work displayed on a road urging people to stay home during lockdown in Hyderabad.
An Indian policeman walks past an art work displayed on a road urging people to stay home during lockdown in Hyderabad. Mahesh Kumar A./AP

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the country's battle against coronavirus a "people-driven" movement and urged citizens to join the government in the struggle.

"People of our country are fighting this war along with the administration. We are also fighting poverty," Modi said Sunday, in his monthly radio broadcast. "I am proud that all of us are part of it. All of us are soldiers in this fight."

Modi said that demonstrations of solidarity, such as clapping and lighting candles, have lifted the morale of frontline workers. He also lauded workers of different sectors, saying "be it in cities or a village, everywhere we can see people getting involved in this fight against the pandemic."

"While some are feeding the poor, some are making masks, others are selling their lands to raise money for this fight. Some are even contributing their pensions. Our hardworking farmers are also ensuring no one is hungry," he added.

Referring to how coronavirus is altering life in India, and around the world, Modi said the most prominent change had been mask-wearing.

Masks have become a part of life due to coronavirus. It doesn't mean if someone wears a mask, they are sick," he said. "Masks will become a symbol of a civilized society."

Modi also thanked Indians for celebrating festivals such as Easter and Ramadan at home. 

India has been under nationwide lockdown since March 24, with no plan to relax restriction until at least May 3.

As of Sunday, the country has reported 26,496 coronavirus cases and 825 deaths, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.

4:17 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

It's 9 a.m. in London and 4 a.m. in New York City. Here's the latest on the pandemic

Two women ride bicycles past the Horse Guards Parade, during lockdown due to the coronavirus outbreak, in London, on Saturday, April 25.
Two women ride bicycles past the Horse Guards Parade, during lockdown due to the coronavirus outbreak, in London, on Saturday, April 25. Alberto Pezzali/AP

Spain eases restrictions: After over a month of confinement, Spanish children are now allowed out on walks as the country attempts a return to normality with the number of coronavirus cases decreasing.

Devastating milestone: Worldwide coronavirus death toll passed 200,000 on Saturday, according to Johns Hopkins University’s tally of deaths across the world.

Varying measures: The state of Western Australia will begin relaxing some lockdown measures Monday, while Hawaii extended the statewide stay-at-home order until May 31, 

Prison release: Several Italian Mafia bosses have been released from prison under a new coronavirus regulation, the country's national anti-Mafia prosecutor said.

Mobile testing units: The UK government announced Sunday that mobile testing units will travel around the UK as they attempt to increase access to coronavirus testing. The network of testing units will be operated by the military, and target vulnerable sites such as care homes, police stations and prisons.

Hunt for a vaccine: It might be necessary to start manufacturing coronavirus vaccines even before they have been fully tested to see if they can protect people from infection, said Richard Hatchett, the CEO of Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI).

4:06 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

India reports its largest single-day jump in coronavirus cases

From CNN's Vedika Sud and Swati Gupta in New Delhi

India has reported 1,990 new coronavirus cases on Sunday -- the highest single-day jump so far, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 26,496, according to its health ministry. 

A total of 824 coronavirus-related deaths have occurred in India, with the western state of Maharashtra -- home to India’s financial capital Mumbai -- being the worst-affected state with 7,628 cases and 323 deaths, the ministry said. 

According to the India Council of Medical research (ICMR), a total of 625,309 samples have been tested as of Sunday. 

India’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, on Saturday announced an extension of a ban on public gatherings until June 30, making it the first Indian state to have extended a ban on gatherings beyond the end of the nationwide lockdown on May 3.

On March 25, India entered a nationwide coronavirus lockdown which was further extended until May 3. The Indian government has since relaxed some of the restrictions to allow crop harvesting and for some non-essential stores to open up.

3:52 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

Germany's daily confirmed cases drops for the third straight day

From CNN's Lauren Kent in London

Daily confirmed coronavirus cases slowed for the third day in Germany, according to Sunday figures from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious disease.

The number of infections increased by 1,737 to reach 154,175, RKI said. The country's death toll stands at 5,640 -- an increase of 140 deaths within the last day. 

The institute previously said the number of daily Covid-19 infections needs to fall to a few hundred per day before further lockdown measures can be lifted.

Germany has been easing its lockdown: Last week, Chancellor Angela Merkel laid out a list of steps the country would undertake to begin lifting its lockdown, and on Monday stores up to 800 square meters in size began reopening, as long as they have hygiene and social distancing measures in place.

Bookshops, car dealerships and bike stores can also now reopen regardless of their size. Restaurants, bars and gyms will remain closed.

Merkel also announced that the country would increase its contact-tracing efforts, deploying a team of five officers for every 20,000 people in the population to trace those who may have come into recent contact with every confirmed case.

Read more about the lifting of lockdowns here.

2:39 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

From private testing for the rich to unrest in banlieues, coronavirus is highlighting France's stark divide

From CNN's Benjamin Berteau, Emma Reynolds and Barbara Wojazer in Paris

A trash can burns in the street during clashes in Villeneuve-la-Garenne, in the northern suburbs of Paris, early on April 21.
A trash can burns in the street during clashes in Villeneuve-la-Garenne, in the northern suburbs of Paris, early on April 21. Geoffroy Van Der Hasselt/AFP/Getty Images

While billionaires isolate themselves at luxurious hideaways on the Mediterranean during the coronavirus outbreak, residents in deprived and crowded areas of France are now facing a surge in deaths, along with unrest on the streets.

Hostilities erupted this week in Paris' northern banlieues (or suburbs) following accusations of police brutality and racism during the coronavirus outbreak. Footage on social media appeared to show cars and trash cans set alight on roads, protesters hurling firecrackers and police racing to control the crowds.

The lockdown in France has had very different consequences for different sections of society since it was announced on March 17. The country's ban on all non-essential business until May 11, along with a requirement for a permission slip to venture outside, has had the harshest impact on people living in poorer, more densely populated neighborhoods, according to an op-ed from several activist organizations and unions in Mediapart on Friday.

The associations -- including ATTAC (Association for the Taxation of financial Transactions and Aid to Citizens) -- wrote that people in working class neighborhoods were on the front lines as essential workers. "Yet social inequalities, already glaring, are reinforced by the management of the coronavirus and will explode with the economic and social crisis to come."

In stark contrast, wealthy residents at one of the country's most exclusive gated communities on the French Riviera have been embroiled in controversy after it emerged that some had access to antibody testing, despite the strain on hospitals and nursing homes across the country.

Read more here.

2:11 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

Western Australia begins relaxing "most extreme" lockdown measures

The state of Western Australia will begin relaxing some lockdown measures Monday, Premier Mark McGowan said on Twitter.

"Our State has seen remarkable results in the fight against COVID-19 - and while that fight will continue for some time yet, those results mean we can now cautiously adjust some of the most extreme of those restrictions," he said on the platform.

"As of tomorrow, 27 April, based on expert health advice, the two person limit on non-work indoor and outdoor gatherings will be adjusted, with the limit rising to 10 people," he added.

The list of "acceptable activities" to leave home for has also been extended. It now includes shopping, medical needs, exercise, studying where remote learning is unavailable, childcare or school, work, "non-contract recreational activities" such as picnics, and some gatherings of less than 10 people.

"All other restrictions will remain in place for now, and all public playgrounds, skate parks and outdoor gym equipment to remain closed," McGowan said.

12:32 a.m. ET, April 26, 2020

Almost 2.9 million coronavirus cases have been reported worldwide

From CNN's Alta Spells

As the United States recorded 48,529 new cases of the coronavirus and 2,772 deaths across the country Saturday, here's where the global figures currently stand, according to Johns Hopkins University (JHU).

The university has tallied 2,897,645 cases worldwide as of Sunday, with the US the worst hit country by far. As of midnight ET, the country has 939,053 cases and 53,789 deaths.

Spain has the second-highest number of cases, at 223,759, followed by Italy with 195,351.

Eleven countries around the world, including the US, have recorded more than 50,000 cases so far, and five countries have recorded more than 20,000 deaths.