Coronavirus: latest news from around the world

By Helen Regan, Adam Renton, Steve George, Jessie Yeung, Tara John and Ed Upright, CNN

Updated 8:06 p.m. ET, October 2, 2020
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3:05 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

White House officials knew Hicks tested positive -- but Trump still traveled for a fundraiser

As the nation reacts to the news of President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump’s coronavirus diagnoses, some are also raising questions about the administration’s handling of the situation after top Trump aide Hope Hicks confirmed that she had tested positive.

A small group of White House officials knew by Thursday morning that Hicks had contracted Covid-19, according to CNN Correspondent Kaitlan Collins -- but Trump still took a trip to New Jersey for a fundraiser, and press secretary Kayleigh McEnany still held a news briefing at the White House on Thursday.

McEnany didn't wear a mask at the briefing, and made no mention of Hicks' diagnosis to reporters in the room, Collins said.

"So the question is going to be for the White House, why did the President still go to New Jersey, knowing that he could potentially put these people at risk, these donors and fund raisers? And of course, why did the press secretary still hold a briefing despite knowing she had come into contact with somebody who had just tested positive for coronavirus?" Collins said.

"She didn't even tell us. Didn't even tell reporters who were on the plane. And there are going to be serious questions about the White House keeping that information not just from the reporters in the room but also from the American people about the state of the health of the President and the people that he potentially came into contact with."

Hear more:

3:01 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

How political leaders are reacting to the news Trump tested positive for Covid-19

From CNN’s Paul Murphy and Joe Sutton

Leaders are now starting to react early this morning to the news that US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump have tested positive for Covid-19.

World leaders and US Senators, Representatives and state governors from both sides of the aisle have tweeted their best wishes to the Trumps.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi also sent his best wishes to the President and first lady.

2:56 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

Civil rights leader Jesse Jackson: "We must pray" for Trump and Melania's recovery

Civil rights activist and former presidential candidate Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. extended his well wishes to President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump late Thursday night, after news broke of their Covid-19 diagnosis.

"We sincerely pray the President & the First Lady do not have the worst of this disease. We must all pray for the full recovery of the President & his wife. For whatever religious or political persuasion you may be, we must all pray as millions of people are affected by this disease," Jackson tweeted.

Some background: Jackson, who endorsed Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination earlier this year, is a a longtime civil rights leader and clergyman.

He launched campaigns for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1983 and 1987, and won Michigan during his presidential bid in 1988 when it was still a caucus.

More recently, he has been vocal about the Black Lives Matter movement, and attended the memorial service for George Floyd in Minneapolis.

2:51 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi wishes President Trump and first lady a quick recovery

US President Donald Trump shakes hand with Narendra Modi, India's prime minister, as they pose for photographers at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on Tuesday, February 25.
US President Donald Trump shakes hand with Narendra Modi, India's prime minister, as they pose for photographers at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on Tuesday, February 25. T. Narayan/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has tweeted his support after US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for coronavirus.

India is struggling to contain its own Covid-19 outbreak and several high profile Indian ministers and government officials have tested positive for the virus.

India has reported the second highest number of Covid-19 infections in the world, behind the United States, with more than 6.3 million cases, according to Johns Hopkins University.

2:34 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

Trump's diagnosis shows the need for greater transparency from the White House, journalists say

There was already "reasonable suspicion" that President Donald Trump had tested positive for coronavirus before he officially announced the diagnosis on Twitter, said CNN's Chief Media Correspondent Brian Stelter.

By 12:30 a.m. ET, there was speculation that "the reason the White House didn't announce a result right away is because they knew he was testing positive, and they were providing notifications to people like Mitch McConnell and other leaders of the government," Stelter said. "We know the White House has these 15-minute rapid tests, and it was concerning, by 11 p.m. and midnight, that we did not have an answer from the White House."

Stelter added that White House aides should "feel more pressure now, from all of us in the public, to tell the public the truth in the coming days and weeks."

Journalist and political commentator Carl Bernstein added that we have previously seen a "lack of transparency and lying by the President and this White House."

"He's had that secret visit to Walter Reed hospital, that we still don't know what it was really about. One of the things that might result from this is there might be some pressure on Capitol Hill, including some Republicans, to insist that there be some transparency for the good of the nation as we go through this period over the coming days," Bernstein said. "Because a lack of honest information as we go forward can be as crippling to the country as the virus, itself, can be to an individual.


2:27 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

Trump aide was likely highly infectious when she was traveling with the President this week, doctor says

From CNN Health’s Shelby Lin Erdman

Counselor to the President Hope Hicks walks from Marine One at Andrews Air Force Base on Wednesday, September 30.
Counselor to the President Hope Hicks walks from Marine One at Andrews Air Force Base on Wednesday, September 30. Alex Brandon/AP

Top Trump aide Hope Hicks, who was diagnosed with Covid-19 Wednesday, would have been “teeming” with the virus on the day that she traveled with US President Donald Trump this week, CNN medical analyst Dr. Jonathan Reiner said Thursday.

Trump and first lady Melania Trump have now tested positive for the virus.

Reiner said Trump and his staff were in close conditions at a time when those who have tested positive will have been potentially highly infectious.

“If you're in close quarters with somebody who is teeming with virus, and we think that you're probably most contagious the day you develop symptoms,” Reiner told CNN’s Don Lemon.

“Yesterday (Wednesday) is when Ms. Hicks apparently developed symptoms. She would be teeming with virus and that's not the time to be on a small helicopter or in a small conference room on Air Force One with a bunch of people,” Reiner said.

Hicks was seen boarding both Air Force One and the helicopter designated as Marine One with the President as she traveled with administration members this week, including to the presidential debate in Ohio on Tuesday.

“The President has gone out of his way to downplay the risks of this virus, to downplay the benefit of universal masking and now we see what happens when you continue to flirt with disaster, when you pretend that somehow you're immune,” said Reiner, who worked in the George W. Bush administration as former Vice President Dick Cheney’s cardiologist.

Having access to constant testing, as Trump does, doesn’t prevent infection, Reiner said.

“What they hoped to do was to create, create a sterile cocoon around him by testing just about everybody that comes into contact with him, but it's really impossible to test everyone every single day with the number of people working in the White House,” Reiner said.

“You only need one broken link to get the virus inside the wire and that's what's happened now, and the virus is merciless. The virus is very contagious.”


2:14 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

Vice President Mike Pence wishes the Trumps a "full and swift recovery"

US Vice President Mike Pence said he was sending "love and prayers" to "our dear friends" US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump, in a tweet in the early hours of Friday morning.

"We join millions across America praying for their full and swift recovery. God bless you President Trump & our wonderful First Lady Melania."

2:19 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

Multiple officials, including Joe Biden, may have been exposed to Trump, Sanjay Gupta says

U.S. President Donald walks to the White House residence on the South Lawn of the White House on October 1.
U.S. President Donald walks to the White House residence on the South Lawn of the White House on October 1. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

With three people in the White House -- President Trump, first lady Melania Trump, and top aide Hope Hicks -- now testing positive for coronavirus, questions are arising as to how many people within the administration may have been exposed to the virus.

The administration needs to "trace their contacts and start quarantining people who have been in close contact with somebody," said CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent Sanjay Gupta. "And that's going to be a very important policy, here, within the West Wing."

Figuring out who has been exposed includes many criteria, he added: how close were they in contact? How long did the contact last?

Joe Biden potentially exposed: Former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, "may have been far enough away on that stage" on Tuesday night during the presidential debate with Trump, said Sanjay.

"And I know that they came in from different areas, probably did not spend time close together. But he is going to need to be tested as well. All the campaign staffers. It's going to be critical."

Even if they weren't in close contact and stood far apart from each other, "we are dealing with the leaders of the country, here," he said.

The timeline of exposure and infection: Infection can also take a while to set in after the moment of exposure, he added.

"People will say, well, I tested negative the next day, after the exposure. Therefore, I am good to go. That is not the case. You could have exposure today, test negative tomorrow, the next day, and so forth for several days. And then, suddenly, test positive."

Hear more from Dr. Gupta:

2:00 a.m. ET, October 2, 2020

US reports more than 43,000 new Covid-19 cases 

From CNN's Alta Spells

The United States recorded 43,752 new Covid-19 infections and 857 new deaths on Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University.

At least 7,277,759 Covid-19 cases, including 207,789 virus-related fatalities, have now been reported in the US since the start of the pandemic.

The totals include cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as repatriated cases. 

CNN is tracking the US cases: