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Spain’s coronavirus death toll slows, with lowest increase in about a month

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Priest Andres Conde, 49, receives help from his twin sister Inma while donning personal protective equipment he received from a convent as they prepare food donations for distribution to needy families, during a lockdown amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Ronda, southern Spain April 18, 2020. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

MADRID (Reuters) – Spain’s death toll from the new coronavirus outbreak rose by 410 on Sunday, down from 565 on Saturday, the Health Ministry said, the lowest daily increase in about a month in one of the world’s hardest hit countries.

The total number of deaths reached 20,453.

The daily increase was the lowest since March 22. It is far below the highest daily increase – 950 deaths reported on April 2 – in a sign of a slowdown of the spread of the virus after Spain imposed a strict lockdown in mid-March.

The overall number of coronavirus cases rose to 195,944 on Sunday from 191,726 on Saturday, the Health Ministry added.

Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on Saturday he would ask parliament for a 15-day extension of the lockdown until May 9, but said the restrictions would be more flexible, such as allowing children to leave their homes for short periods of time.

“We have left behind the most extreme moments,” Sanchez said at a press briefing. But he added: “These achievements are still insufficient and above all fragile. We cannot put them at risk with hasty solutions”.

Reporting by Joan Faus; Editing by Alex Richardson

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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