New Delhi: The United States, which has the highest number of coronavirus cases, as well as the highest death toll due to the virus, on Friday became the first country to pass the seven lakh confirmed cases mark, a tally maintained by the Baltimore-based John Hopkins University said. Also Read - Looking Into Reports That Coronavirus 'Escaped' From Wuhan Lab: Trump
As of 8:30 PM on Friday (Saturday, 6 AM IST), the US had recorded 7,00, 282 positive COVID-19 cases, including 36,773 fatalities. This represented a spike in death toll by around 3,900 in the last 24 hours, though this figure likely includes ‘probable’ virus-linked deaths, which had not previously been counted. Also Read - Ivanka Trump Goes on Holiday Trip With Husband Amid Lockdown, White House Comes to Her Defence
Earlier this week, New York City had said that it would add 3,778 ‘probable’ virus deaths to its official count. Also Read - Coronavirus: Trump's 'Three-Phase' Approach to Reopen US After COVID-19 Pandemic
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, gave a toll Friday night of 33,049, including 4,226 probable virus-linked deaths.
Italy, Spain and France, have the second, third and fourth highest COVID-19 death tolls respectively.
On a related note, US President Donald Trump, who is facing severe flak over his handling of the crisis, tweeted that China’s real death toll was ‘higher’ than what was being projected, even as officials in the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the pandemic began, issued a new count sharply raising the number of fatalities in the country.
As per the new count, with 1,290 new deaths added, China’s death toll stands at 4,632 in a tally of over 82,000 cases.