Mon, 06 Jul 2020

CAIRO, May 28 (Xinhua) -- Egypt on Thursday set a new record of single-day rise in COVID-19 infections, with 1,127 new cases confirmed, bringing the total cases to 20,793.

It was the first time for Egypt's COVID-19 daily infections to surpass 1,000, after the country saw 910 infections on Wednesday, following eight consecutive days of registering over 700 daily infections.

The Egyptian Health Ministry also reported 29 new deaths from the novel coronavirus, raising the death toll in the most populous Arab country to 845.

On the same day, 154 coronavirus patients were completely cured and discharged from hospitals, increasing total recoveries to 5,359, said the ministry's spokesman Khaled Megahed in a statement.

Egypt announced its first confirmed case of COVID-19 infection on Feb. 14, and the first death from the pandemic on March 8, both of whom were foreigners.

The Health Ministry has recently prepared 320 public hospitals for receiving and treating coronavirus patients, besides those hospitals of chest diseases and fever that have been working with full capacity since the outbreak of the pandemic.

Since the beginning of the Muslim Eid al-Fitr holiday on May 24, Egypt extended a previously imposed nighttime curfew from nine hours to 13 hours for six days, to maintain social distancing and avoid gatherings amid increasing COVID-19 infections.

From May 30, the curfew will be reduced to 10 hours for two weeks, and then the government will consider easing the restrictions and gradually resuming some suspended activities.

The government has already started gradually reopening services and offices that have been suspended since mid-March amid a "coexistence plan" to maintain anti-coronavirus precautionary measures while resuming services, businesses and economic activities.

The country has also allowed reopening of 78 hotels in seven provinces for local tourists after they have been inspected and given "hygiene safety" certificates from a government special committee.

Egypt and China have been closely cooperating in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic through exchanging medical aid and expertise to curb the spread of the deadly respiratory disease.

In early February, Egypt was among the first nations to provide aid to China in its fight against the coronavirus outbreak.

China, after having largely controlled the pandemic, returned favor by sending three batches of medical aid to Egypt, the latest of which was delivered in mid-May.

Since mid-April, Chinese doctors held three video conferences with Egyptian counterparts to share their experiences in the prevention and treatment of the novel coronavirus.

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