Global virus deaths pass 150,000 as Trump endorses lockdown protests
Washington: Coronavirus deaths have surged past 150,000 worldwide with nearly a quarter of them in the United States, where President Donald Trump lent his support to protestors rallying against lockdown orders.
Evidence is mounting that social distancing successfully slowed the pandemic after more than half of humanity — 4.5 billion people — were confined to their homes.
Governments around the world are now grappling with when and how to ease lockdowns that have crippled the global economy, even as the COVID-19 death toll climbs further in hard-hit countries.
Demonstrators in three US states assembled in public this week to call for an end to the restrictions, with the largest protest in Michigan attracting 3,000 people — some of whom were armed.
Trump has largely left decisions on easing lockdowns to state officials even as he outlined guidelines for a staged reopening of the national economy.
The US accounts for nearly a third of the 2.2 million coronavirus infections reported globally.