Brazil daily coronavirus deaths were higher than fatalities in the United States for the first time over the last 24 hours, according to the country’s Health Ministry. Brazil registered 807 deaths over the last 24 hours, whereas 620 died in the United States. Brazil has the second worst outbreak in the world, with 374,898 cases, behind the U.S with 1.637 million cases.
President Donald Trump on Sunday further limited travel from the world’s coronavirus hotspots by denying entry to foreigners coming from Brazil, which is second to the U.S. in the number of confirmed cases. Trump had already banned certain travelers from China, Europe, the United Kingdom and Ireland and, to a lesser extent, Iran. He has not moved to ban travel from Russia, which has the world’s third-highest caseload.
Confirmed Covid-19 cases in Brazil have surpassed the total in Italy and are surging in Mexico and Peru as Latin America struggles to contain its fast-growing coronavirus outbreak. Brazil announced nearly 15,000 new infections on Saturday, taking its total to more than 230,000, the fourth-largest confirmed caseload after the US, Russia and the UK. Its true number of infections is feared to be much greater.
Brazil has recorded its deadliest day yet from the coronavirus with 881 confirmed deaths in 24 hours and confirmed cases exceeding Germany’s, as President Jair Bolsonaro fought states over his push to ease lockdown restrictions. Brazil’s health ministry confirmed at least 12,400 deaths from the virus as of Tuesday. The right-wing president has argued that the economic damage from closing businesses is worse than the disease.
Brazil deployed thousands of soldiers to protect the Amazon rainforest on Monday, taking precautions to avoid spreading the novel coronavirus, as the government mounts an early response to surging deforestation ahead of the high season for forest fires. Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon surged 55% in the first four months of the year compared with the same period of 2019, according to government data released on Friday.
Brazil’s president has refused to extend the country’s coronavirus quarantine measures because of job losses and the impact on the poor. On Sunday, Mr Bolsonaro visited a market area outside the federal capital to stress the message that lockdown measures should be relaxed. And just hours later Facebook and Twitter removed a video of him speaking to street vendors, explaining that it violated their standards on misinformation.
The number of police killings in Rio de Janeiro reached a record high last year, officials say, amid controversial hardline measures to tackle violence. Police killed 1,810 people, an average of five per day, the highest number since official records began in 1998. Critics blame the rise on policies that include the use of heavily armed agents and helicopter-borne snipers. But officials say the approach has worked, citing a drop in violent crime.
The president of Brazil’s supreme court has issued an order allowing Netflix to continue showing a satirical film depicting Jesus as a gay man and reaffirmed Brazilians’ right to free speech. “It is not to be assumed that a humorous satire has the magic power to undermine the values of the Christian faith, whose existence goes back more than two thousand years,” supreme court president José Antonio Dias Toffoli wrote in his decision.
Brazil’s supreme court has reached a narrow decision that could release almost 5,000 inmates who are still appealing their convictions, including jailed former president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. The court decided in a 6-5 vote on Thursday that a person can be imprisoned only after all appeals to higher courts have been exhausted. The supreme court’s debate began in mid-October and its result could throw Brazil’s political landscape into uncertainty.
President Jair Bolsonaro has insisted that the Brazilian areas of the Amazon rainforest are sovereign territory. Conservationists blame Mr Bolsonaro and his government for turning a blind eye to farmers and loggers clearing land in the Amazon, hastening deforestation. He said it was a “fallacy” to describe the Amazon as the heritage of humanity and a “misconception” that its forests were the lungs of the world.