Coronavirus deaths top 20,000 worldwide, mostly in Europe

The coronavirus pandemic has killed more than 20,000 people worldwide, most of them in Europe. A total of 20,449 deaths were reported, of which nearly 14,000 were in Europe. With 7,503 deaths, Italy is the most affected country ahead of Spain with 3,434 and China with 3,281, the country where the initial outbreak occurred.

The global death toll from the novel coronavirus surpassed 20,000 Wednesday, according to figures compiled by U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.

The virus known as COVID-19, which emerged in Wuhan, China last December, has spread to at least 172 countries and regions around the globe, while a total of 20,499 people have died, and confirmed cases exceeded 451,355.

In all, 112,982 people diagnosed with COVID-19 have recovered from the disease.

Italy, Spain, China and Iran continue to be the most affected countries.

Although China has the most confirmed cases with more than 81,600, Italy recorded the most deaths with 7,503 fatalities in nearly 69,200 cases.

Spain also surpassed China, the ground zero of the virus, with 3,434 deaths, while confirmed cases exceed 47,600. China followed Spain with 3,163 deaths.

Meanwhile, the death toll is 2,077 in Iran as toped 27,000.

Many countries have restricted flights from the most affected places and gone implemented lockdowns as the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 a pandemic and Europe the new epicenter of the outbreak.

The Johns Hopkins figures far exceed official tallies compiled by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that are updated daily, but only for cases reported by 4.00 p.m. local time (2000GMT) the preceding day.

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