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Thirty-nine States Makes Masks Mandatory; India's Coronavirus Hit the One Million Mark; Russia Push Back to Allegations of Hacking; Hong Kong Tighten Rules Amid Spike in COVID; United States Looking to Ban Travel to China; Coronavirus Pandemic; Brazil Now Reporting More Than 2 Million Covid-19 Cases; Nations Struggle To Contain Global Outbreaks; South Africa Now Has More Than 300,000 Covid-19 Cases; Health Officials, Death Rate Low Despite Increase In Cases; Virus Surges In South America's Largest Country; Peru Surpasses 341,000 Covid-19 Cases And 12,600 Deaths; Warning From Bolivian Nurses, Everything Has Collapsed; Bolivian Cemeteries Fill Up As Virus Spreads; IMF, Second Wave Could Worsen Global Economic Crisis; IMF Chief Predicts Possible Covid Crisis Fallout; Small Businesses Struggle During Crisis; Twitter Hack Investigations; Real Madrid captures Spanish League Title. Aired 3-4a ET
Aired July 17, 2020 - 03:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: We also want to thank our guests, Dr. Tom Frieden, Neal Browning, and Ian Haydon. Also, thanks to those of you who wrote in with your questions. Everyone who joined us, if you didn't get your question answered tonight, the conversation continues at cnn.com/coronavirusanswers. The news continues right now with --
NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: Hello. Live from CNN headquarters in Atlanta. I'm Natalie Allen. And this is CNN Newsroom.
Another day, another record of coronavirus case in the United States as the battle over where or not to wear masks takes centerstage.
The U.S. is not the only country setting records. India surging past one million cases as health experts blame a lack of testing on the rising numbers. We'll go there live for you.
Also, this hour, the Kremlin denies it that the U.S., the U.K., and Canada say Russia is trying to hack COVID-19 vaccine and treatment research.
Thank you so much for joining us.
The United States set another regrettable record on Thursday with more than 77,000 new cases of coronavirus in a single day. The sunbelt from California to Florida is getting the worst of it. Many hospitals are already running on fumes. Dead bodies are piling up so fast that the victims must be stored in refrigerated trucks. America's top health experts agree it is grim.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: We do have a serious situation now. The southern states, particularly exemplified by Florida, California, Arizona, Texas, have seen surges that are really quite disturbing. Surges, as you mentioned, that have gone up to over 60,000 cases a day. That, obviously, is something that we must address.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ALLEN: The alarm is growing just weeks after most of the country had begun to reopen. To avoid another lockdown, masks in public are now required in more than three dozen states. Georgia is an exception. Governor Brian Kemp is suing Atlanta's mayor over the city's mask mandate. It is a surreal pushback, given that masks are simple, cheap, and just plain common sense.
Meanwhile, the Trump White House continues to lean on school districts to resume classes in the fall. It is a hard sell as parents, teachers, and students weigh the risks. But the White House is adamant.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KAYLEIGH MCENANY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: When he says open, he means open in full. Kids being able to attend. Each and every day at their school. The science should not stand in the way of this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ALLEN: President Trump's so-called coronavirus testing tsar says the U.S. needs to do a better job getting results quickly so cities and states can decide how to fight the virus as it is now some people wait 10 to 12 days or longer to get results.
CNN's Nick Watt has more of the day's headlines.
NICK WATT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is Texas. Now six months into this pandemic. Refrigerated trailers deployed to store the dead. In Dallas, San Antonio, and down near the border morgues are filling up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EDDIE TREVINO, JUDGE, CAMERON COUNTY, TEXAS: We are pleading with everybody here in (Inaudible) that our community I need everybody to help us and do their part.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATT: And in Corpus Christi.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARBARA CANALES, JUDGE, NUENCES COUNTY, TEXAS: We were doing fantastic at the end of May, we have just absolutely skyrocketed after Memorial Day.
(END VIDEO CLIP) WATT: Mid May, the county was locking maybe a handful of new cases
every day. Yesterday? More than 1000. Similar situation over in Miami, where hospitals are now at 95 percent capacity.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR FRANCIS SUAREZ (R), MIAMI: We are at the highest level of ventilators that we've seen through this pandemic.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATT: Thirty-nine states are now hearing in the wrong direction with average case counts rising. Today, Target, CVS, and Publix joined the growing list of retailers that will require masks in stores nationwide.
Arkansas's governor just reversed course now requiring masks in public. Musk mandates now in at least 39 states but not Georgia, where the governor just banned local municipalities from making the mandatory. He is now suing Atlanta's mayor whose order is still in place.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR VAN JOHNSON, SAVANNAH, GEORGIA: I was furious. I was absolutely loss for words. It made absolutely no sense to me that at a time where our corporate giants are mandating masks, where the state of Alabama is mandating masks, where the state of Florida, about 120 miles south of us is the hot spot of the nation.
JOHN FETTERMAN, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR, PENNSYLVANIA: The fact that we are arguing about masking, I don't understand that in the middle of a pandemic.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATT: Example? This Utah County commission meeting got into masks and schools, and abruptly ended.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are supposed to be physically distancing, wearing masks. And so --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATT: The president kind of agrees with those moves.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: We're going to be putting a lot of pressure on open the schools in the fall. (END VIDEO CLIP)
WATT: Not one off the 20 largest districts in the country has committed to in-person teaching. But the state of Florida says it's ready even as Miami's mayor pleads for federal guidance.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SUAREZ: There was guidance in terms of reopening, in terms of the gating criteria, but there wasn't any guidance in terms of what happens if there's a second spike like we are seeing right now. How do you go backwards? What are the metrics? And so, we are struggling.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WATT: Nick Watt, CNN, Los Angeles.
ALLEN: Joining me now, Dr. Jacob Stephen. He's a cardiologist with Northwestern Medicine. He is joining us from Chicago, Illinois. Doctor, thanks so much for coming on.
JACOB STEPHEN, CARDIOLOGIST, NORTHWESTERN MEDICINE: Thanks for having me, Natalie.
ALLEN: Sure thing. Well, I want to begin with the mask issue. Thirty- nine states have some type of mask order in place. Florida is the country's epicenter. But the most defiant when it comes to wearing masks. Can you make sense of that? And how likely is it that that is in a large part contributing to the state's record high number of cases?
STEPHEN: Well, yes. That is a major contributor to the spikes that we are seeing in Florida. We have data from the United States, we have data from other countries around the world, the two most effective methods to curb transmission within a community is of course wearing a mask and some sort of sensible social distancing.
So, we can see those effects in or on a state by state basis here. But Florida and the spike that you are seeing there is definitely related to wearing masks and I guess not socially distancing.
ALLEN: Well, let's contrast Florida with your state there, Illinois, which has been able to contain the virus by a few things. (Inaudible) shutting down, being insistent with information it gives to the public and the governor took steps to ensure the healthcare system could meet demand. Could you talk about how this has worked for Illinois?
STEPHEN: Well, sure enough Illinois was able to shut down fairly quickly once the pandemic took effect. But I think in addition to that, some of the measures they took with the healthcare system kind of shoring up hospitals with negative pressure rooms, ventilators, those kinds of measures, kind of kept the transmission at bay. The treatment facilities available.
But probably more important was how well educated the community was with these measures. State and local officials were very consistent with putting out information regarding the benefits of wearing masks, the benefits of socially distancing.
And I think an educated community certainly is important in curbing transmission. These days, most people here in Illinois are happy to wear masks. They see it almost as a duty to help prevent transmission to their neighbors, so a community approach is definitely important and I think that's the part of the success that we've seen here in Illinois.
ALLEN: And it's nice to see for sure. School re-openings are a big concern for the U.S. Other countries opened because COVID was under control. We have states planning to open, doctor, next month with cases currently spiking. Can they do that safely?
STEPHEN: Well if you look at countries which have been successful, countries like Denmark or Norway, usually those countries have the advantage of starting at a low transmission point. Their numbers were actually declining and they had a very clear plan for reopening their schools.
Many of our school districts do not have such a detailed plan. I'm not saying it's impossible to open up a school safely, I'm just saying that it would take a considerable resources from both the federal, state, and local level to be able to socially distance our students, have enough area to keep them apart, for group activities, prevent contact with common surfaces, make sure that they have their hands and washing stations, hand sanitizer, et cetera.
These are all measures to kind of safety open schools in the fall. But there are only a few school districts that I know that have very detailed plans such as that.
ALLEN: And it's important when you consider this new number here. Johns Hopkins University reported 77,255 new cases Thursday, setting a new single day record of cases reported in the U.S. At the same time, the U.S. is seeing testing shortages and long delays in results. Is this hurting the ability to stop the spread of this disease?
STEPHEN: Yes. Most definitely. The larger laboratories here in the United States are starting to see a lag of several days between testing and results. And just in those few short days, patients can spread COVID very exponentially.
So rapid testing and rapid results are key to curbing the spread in the community. But then there is the other factor that I'm seeing a lot of longer lines at community testing centers. Certainly, disenfranchising people as far as coming forward and getting themselves tested, it is extremely important. Otherwise the patient will not know to quarantine themselves in order to prevent this exponential spread.
ALLEN: Yes, another problem as we see Arizona here, it's so hot here people are fainting while they wait to get their tests. And that's just another horrible side note to this unbelievable saga we are seeing in this country. Thank you so much, Dr. Jacob Stephen for your expertise and for giving
us your time, sir.
STEPHEN: Thanks for having me, Natalie.
ALLEN: Now we go around the world for you. Hong Kong is fighting its third wave of coronavirus infections. The city has seen a surge in new cases in the last two weeks. Many among those who work with the public. That includes taxi drivers, and restaurant staff along with some customers.
On Thursday, Hong Kong recorded 67 new infections. All with four originated locally from community spread. One official warns the worst is yet to come.
Let's bring in Will Ripley. He's in Hong Kong, joining us now with more on the situation knowing that the worst is yet to come. That is not good news for this city. Hello to you, Will.
WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Natalie. Yes, certainly potentially it could be very, very difficult here. But when you looked at that chart that you just showed, and I don't know if you can bring it up again, you know, they just had to add 100 to the top kind of limit. And it's not 100,000, it's 100 cases. And Hong Kong has hit a record so far of 67 cases. That was yesterday. We are waiting for the new numbers to come out in the next hour or so.
But this is a city of seven million people that has had 10 coronavirus deaths, just two of them this week. And you know, around 1,700 total cases since the start of the pandemic and the fact that 67 cases in one day is the record should tell you something about how this city is tackling the virus.
So even though the numbers are so low that a lot of other places around the world would be celebrating, you know, having just 67 cases, here in Hong Kong they are very concerned because in a little over two weeks ago, it was zero cases of community transmission. And all the cases were basically being imported, they were detected at the airport, they were isolated. People who were positive were hospitalized.
Now they are worried about people walking about Hong Kong with the virus, possibly a more contagious mutated version of the virus. And they know public health officials know, that the numbers well under 100 so far could quickly shoot up, especially in a place like this. You know, with of course, with just lots of lots of opportunity for this virus to jump around.
That's why the strictest social distancing measures to date have been enacted just this week. We are talking about bars closed, gyms closed, Hong Kong Disneyland, schools were closed early. And also, you know, the social distancing measures, you have to wear a mask on public transportation or as you will be fined several hundred dollars.
They are trying to up the number of people who get COVID-19 tests including taxi drivers, one of the groups that was mentioned as a possible cluster here. So, they are trying, Natalie, to locate and isolate these cases.
But we know, you know from elsewhere around the world, once the virus is in a community, people who don't have symptoms are unlikely to voluntarily go in and get tested because they don't see necessarily a need to. And that can be a big problem because then they could start spreading into others here, and we can see the numbers tick up, Natalie.
ALLEN: Right, the testing complication that we've seen in many other places as well. Will Ripley in Hong Kong, thank you, and stay safe, Will.
Worrying news out of India, which has the most COVID-19 cases after the United States and Brazil. India now reporting more than one million cases and more than 25,000 deaths. The health ministry does say that more than 630,000 people have recovered from the virus so far. We'll take that good news.
CNN's Vedika Sud joins me now comes live from New Delhi with more on the situation there. Hello to you, Vedika.
VEDIKA SUD, CNN PRODUCER: Well, Natalie. All is not looking that upsetting and disturbing for now according to the government of India because they also claim that just one third of the total confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of now are active cases.
But here is what's worrying. The state of Maharashtra which is the western state in India and has seen the highest number of COVID cases until now has more cases as a single state when compared to the countries of Italy or Spain and they are still facing a lockdown.
So, the worry is when the lockdown lifts, what's next for the state? (AUDIO GAP) about the capital of India, the city of Delhi and as well as Mumbai, and how the cases really were high there, but now that seems to be also going down south. Southern states have started also seeing a huge spike in the number of cases.
I spoke to a lot of doctors they say that this is the time India has to be extremely vigilant.
On March 24th, India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the country's first lockdown to counter the spread of coronavirus. India had recorded over 500 COVID-19 cases and 10 deaths until then. Three and a half months later according to Johns Hopkins University, India has the third highest number of cases in the world.
Dr. Rajesh Parikh who has coauthored a book on the pandemic says India's 1.3 billion population is just one of the many reasons for the rising numbers. He says India needs to aggressively ramp up testing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAJESH PARIKH, CO-AUTHOR, THE CORONAVIRUS: There are the unique challenges in India the inequity in healthcare, the penetration of testing services. So, there are multiple variables but if there is one that we could clearly identify, I would still say it is testing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SUD: While India's capital New Delhi has recently reported the highest COVID-19 numbers among cities across the country, its government claims the situation is slowly improving.
"Delhi was expected 225,000 cases by the 15th of July but we are in a much better situation than what the mathematical projections were indicating, says Delhi's chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.
But Dr. Deven Juneja who works on the frontline at the top private hospital in Delhi advises caution in the coming weeks.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DEVEN JUNEJA, MAX SUPER SPECIALTY HOSPITAL: We cannot let our guard down. Until we start seeing the community immunity going up till that point of time there is always going to be a risk of resurgence.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SUD: Despite an extended lockdown across the western state of Maharashtra it remains the worst effective state in India. Its capital and India's richest city Mumbai has recently seen a dip in COVID-19 infections, which according to experts could witness another surge after lockdown rules are relaxed.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHIVKUMAR UTTURE, PRESIDENT, MAHARASHTRA MEDICAL COUNCIL: We can talk about the peak only when we completely open up the lockdown and especially when the lifeline of Mumbai that is the railways starts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SUD: With over 26,000 daily infections been reported since the 9th of July, some states and cities in India are reentering lockdown conditions. Currently, the movement of over 400 million people across the country has been restricted.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PARIKH: This is the pattern. You will see cases going down in some areas, cases coming up in other areas, and we will have to be vigilant.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SUD: It took India just four days to add roughly 100,000 cases to its COVID-19 tally this week. The big challenge will now be to control new infections after areas under lockdown open up.
While the death toll stands at over 25,600, the ministry of health in India say that India's fatality rate (technical difficulty) just 2.6 percent (technical difficulty). One of the lowest (technical difficulty) among the worst affected according to Johns Hopkins University. Natalie?
ALLEN: All right. India, a country to watch for sure. Vedika Sud, thank you so much for your reporting there.
Western allies say Russian hackers are at it again. Next here, they are trying to crack into coronavirus research. Find out what the Kremlin has to say.
ALLEN: Serious hacking accusations against Moscow, and indignant denials from the Kremlin. Three western allies alleged that hackers backed by Moscow are targeting coronavirus vaccine and treatment research.
CNN international correspondent Matthew Chance has more about it.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: While it is an extraordinary allegation that Russian spies have been hacking into organizations, trying to find the coronavirus vaccine in the U.S., Britain, and Canada. One which has drawn angry denials here in Moscow.
Russia has nothing at all to do with these attacks, is what the Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told state media earlier on. But the latest allegations are that a hacking group known as, amongst other things, Cozy Bear, linked to Russian foreign intelligence services or the SVR, exploited software flaws to access vulnerable computers, and then used malware to upload and download files from infected machines.
U.K. security services say that vaccine research has not been hindered by those attacks, but coronavirus research is, of course, a particularly sensitive area at the moment with nations racing to find effective treatments.
Russia is, of course, one of those nations. One of the highest numbers of coronavirus infection in the world. And Moscow has plowed vast resources into trying to find a vaccine.
So, on one level, it would not be surprising if the country's intelligence services were also focused on finding out as much as possible about what research other countries may be engaged in.
Russia, though, says its own vaccine program is already at an advanced stage, and that the allegations of spying are, according to one senior Russian official, nearly an attempt to tarnish the reputation of the Russian vaccine which may yet become the first in the world.
Matthew Chance, CNN, Moscow.
ALLEN: Dozens of potential vaccine candidates are being developed around the world. Among them, China state-run pharmaceutical company, Sinopharm, has announced it has started phase three clinical trials of a COVID-19 vaccine in Abu Dhabi. It is the world's first phase three trial of an inactivated vaccine, a type used against measles and influenza.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ASHISH KOSHY, CEO, GROUP 42: It is definitely a momentous occasion for the United Arab Emirates and the world. We are definitely making history here in the UAE, and it is a matter of tremendous pride for Group 42 healthcare as an organization, and personally myself, also, to just to be part of this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ALLEN: Fifteen thousand volunteers in the United Arab Emirates will be recruited over three to six months. All of the volunteers will be between the ages of 18 and 60 and have no underlying medical conditions.
The Trump administration is increasing its anti-China rhetoric with an eye toward the November election. Tensions are already high between these rival powers over issues including the coronavirus, Hong Kong, and the disputed South China Sea. And now, China is responding to reports the U.S. is considering a travel ban on members of China's Communist Party.
Kristie Lu Stout joins me now from Hong Kong. She is looking into this, and it seems like issue after issue. It is compounding between these two countries, Kristie.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And the latest issues, these reports coming up first reported by the New York Times that the Trump administration is weighing a sweeping travel ban that would affect the 90 plus million members of the Chinese Communist Party, as well as their family.
It would effectively block in total 200 million people from China from being able to enter the United States if this ban goes through. Now I should mention that CNN has reached out to the White House to the State Department, to Homeland Security for comment. We have not received comment yet.
We have received comment from the spokesperson of China's ministry of foreign affairs, Hua Chunying has responded, saying that if the reported plans are true, it would be, quote, "pathetic."
Now if this ban is indeed implemented, exactly who would be affected? Well, members of the China's Communist Party include the party elites, as well as rank and file members. It also includes high-profile business people including the founder of Huawei, Ren Zhengfei, including the editor and chief of ByteDance, that's the owner of the popular app Tik Tok. It would also affect Jack Ma, the billionaire founder of Alibaba who's arguably the most famous capitalist in China, he is also member of China's Communist Party. It would also affect academics, scientists, and doctors.
I should mention that Dr. Li Wenliang, as you may recall, the late ophthalmologist from Wuhan, the whistleblower of COVID-19 who later died from the disease, he was the Chinese Communist Party member.
This comes during a time of rising tension between the U.S. and China over a host of issues, over autonomy in Hong Kong, over human rights abuses in Xinjiang, over the assertions of sovereignty in the South China Sea, over the WHO and its relationship with China, over the trade war, over the tech war, and the fate and future of Huawei, as well as Tik Tok.
And if Donald and the Trump administration do indeed go through with this plan, this sweeping ban on 90 plus million members of China's Communist Party this would be one of its toughest actions yet, and analyst say China would certainly retaliate. Natalie?
ALLEN: Yes. One would expect. So, Kristie Lu Stout from Hong Kong following this for us. Thanks so much, Kristie.
The number of new coronavirus infections in South Africa is going up, but so far, deaths are low. We'll have a live report from Johannesburg right after this.
ALLEN: Welcome back. You're watching CNN Newsroom. I'm Natalie Allen.
Six months after the first recorded death of coronavirus, the global death toll is rapidly approaching 600,000 people. India just marked its one millionth case. Brazil has twice that number, and counting.
CNN's Nic Robertson has more about it.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Brazil's President, Jair Bolsonaro announcing he tested positive again, for COVID-19. Saying, he is doing better.
But it's his country isn't. His anti-lockdown speeches help trust his Latin-American nation to second worst in the world after the United States, surpassing two million cases, Thursday, and 76,000 deaths.
Fellow Brit nation, India also in the worst throws of the pandemic. Third in the global ranking of cases, and more than 400 million people there, reentered lockdown conditions this week. And on yet another continent, Africa, South Africa facing rising caseloads. Overwhelming, under-resourced hospitals. Some staff are short of PPE, refusing to show up, fearing for their lives.
Developing nations are being the hardest hit. Latin America, and the Caribbean, the worst 3.5 million infections, 150,000 deaths. Peru, which, this week, reopen domestic flights, second to Brazil, nearly 4,000 new cases, Thursday. In Chile, some reason for hope. New vaccine trials could begin, August.
Half a planet away in Japan, fears of a second wave. Tokyo going on to its highest state of alert, as hospitalizations rise. Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong, facing a possible third wave. Over 60 new cases, Thursday. Social distancing measures eased. Australia's Victoria state, also facing a new wave of infections. Had its worst daily rise, 317 cases.
Meanwhile, Europe, on the downside of its first wave, facing rising unemployment. More than 600,000 lost jobs in the U.K. alone, as experts forecast nearly 120,000 U.K. covid deaths this winter. Local, not national lockdowns here becoming the norm. And finally, the P.M. commits to an independent inquiry into his handling of covid-19.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Of course, mister speaker, we will seek to learn lessons of this pandemic.
ROBERTSON: This, as some leaders, facing protests over their handling of covid-19. For several days, Serbs in Belgrade took to the streets, angry at their government's handling of lockdown.
And in Israel, the P.M. Benjamin Netanyahu facing protest, as a second covid-19 wave buffets its tiny nation. He promises massive government handouts as infection rates hit a new daily record. In Spain on Thursday, the nation pauses to remember their covid-19 losses. As much-needed tourist nations got drunk, ignored social distancing, forcing a resort to shot. Nic Robinson, CNN, London.
NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: South Africa which Nic just mentioned, now has more than 300,000 cases. The largest amount of reported cases are in or near, Johannesburg. However, even though new infection numbers are growing up, health officials say the rate of death remains relatively low. Let's bring in our David McKenzie, he is standing by for us in Johannesburg. He joins us now live with more on the situation there. Hello David.
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hello, Natalie. Yes, as you said, about 300,000 cases here in South Africa. More than 13,000 cases overnight confirmed here in this country. Now, South Africa has risen to sixth in the world in terms of confirmed covid-19 cases. In and around Johannesburg, as you say, the numbers are really surging fast. Doctors I've spoken to in the last few days say one of the key pressure points is making enough beds available with high flow oxygen. A treatment that is proving very successful across the world to try and to make those who are severely ill, better, of course.
And the problem they are facing now in South Africa is that if they get to that stage, where their oxygen runs low, they could face issues. But the good news is, as you said, Natalie, the death rate here remains pretty low. It is the lowest of all of those countries in sheer numbers in the top 10 of confirmed cases. Substantially lower than countries like the U.K. that had fewer confirmed cases. Now, they hope that that will hold fast, but there are many weeks ahead as South Africa approaches its surge here.
ALLEN: All right. We will stay hopeful on that part of the story. How South Africa contemplated locking down again with the rising cases?
MCKENZIE: Well, at the start of this week, the president address the nation, and he said, they certainly did seriously discuss locking down the country again. But they said that the economy needs to remain open, as open as it is, but they had still have put in stricter measures this week, Natalie. They reintroduced a liquor ban to try and free up beds in emergency rooms, they made masks mandatory, even in some cases, if you are found without a mask, you could be prosecuted.
And I have to say, in general, the mask wearing that I've seen in South Africa has been pretty across the board. They have put in a curfew and despite that, schools are open here under strict conditions. There is a sense that they cannot go back to a full lockdown given to the effect it would have on the economy.
But as those cases surge, it is going to strain the health care system in this country. And you know, around half of all confirmed cases in Africa, here in South Africa, part of that, of course, is that the testing here is much more robust than in other parts of the continent. But the low death rate, according to the African CDC, is kind of mirrored across Africa. Whether that holds, as the surge really comes here remains to be seen. Natalie?
ALLEN: All right. Thank you so much, David McKenzie for us in Johannesburg.
We have more details now on the situation in Brazil. As we mentioned, there are now more than 2 million cases in Brazil, the virus is spreading so rapidly, the case count doubled from 1 million in less than one month. Brazil's government counts nearly 40,000 new cases per day, and states that had been spared the worst of the outbreak are now seeing rapid increases. More than 76,000 people have died. Critics blame the federal government and President Jair Bolsonaro for focusing on the economy, and fighting lockdown restrictions. For more, here Shasta Darlington in Sau Paulo.
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yet another grim milestone for Brazil. The total number of covid-19 infections, now over two million. The South American nation registered more than 45,000 new cases on Thursday, and 1,322 additional deaths. Bringing the total death toll to over 76,000. Experts have said, they do not expect the pandemic to peak in Brazil until sometime in mid-August.
Nonetheless, we have seen a shift from big cities like Sau Paulo, two smaller cities and towns. Indigenous communities have been particularly hard hit, but even rural states like (inaudible) in the west are facing crisis. The government there says they have run out of intensive care beds.
Meanwhile, Brazil's most famous patient, President Jair Bolsonaro, remains in semi isolation at the presidential residence. He posted a video on social media this week, saying he's taking the controversial malaria drug, hydroxychloroquine, and he says he is doing very well. Nonetheless, he tested positive a second time when he took another coronavirus test. He says he will take a follow-up test in coming days in the hopes of getting back to work. Shasta Darlington, CNN, Sau Paulo.
ALLEN: Peru is the second hardest hit country in Latin America and the Caribbean, after Brazil. Just one day after Peru resume domestic flights, it reported nearly 4,000 new cases. So far, there has been more than 340,000 confirmed infections in this country, and the virus has killed more than 12,600 people.
Doctors and nurses in Bolivia say they are completely overwhelmed by coronavirus. The country has more than 54,000 cases, and nearly 2,000 deaths. The virus is ripping through the government as well. For more about it, here is CNN's Rafael Romo.
RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AMERICAN AFFAIRS EDITOR: Voicing anger over a lack of resources, hospital nurses in El Alto Bolivia say that the situation is dire.
MARY TICONA, PROTESTING NURSE: We collapsed about two months ago. We are attending to our people as we can, in stretchers, wheelchairs, however we can attend to them, but we have collapsed.
ROMO: A sign at the El Alto hospital tells those seeking care, there are no more beds to receive patients. Anyone hoping to be seen may face a long wait. Amid a wave of new coronavirus deaths, workers dig mass graves, as cemeteries across the country exceed capacity. Many morgues are also full. In some crematoriums are working around the clock, sending plumes of smoke into the air. As the death toll rises, some volunteers are trying to help collect bodies, assisting families who may be too poor to lay their loved ones to rest.
LUIZ FERNANDO ORTIZ, FOUNDER OF GOODBYE BRIGADE (through translator): We are all being affected. I have family members in intensive care. We are trying to find a ventilator for my wife's grandfather to save his life. Everything has collapsed, the morgue, hospitals, it's a catastrophic situation.
ROMO: As Bolivia see spikes in daily numbers of people dying from coronavirus, it becomes one of the world's worst affected nations in per capita deaths. The country is also reporting record high infections, penetrating the highest levels of government. Bolivia's interim president announced last week, she had tested
positive for coronavirus, now, one of 11 high-ranking officials to have contracted covid-19.
The spread of the virus through Bolivia's government is raising questions about upcoming election, delayed after widespread unrest last year, led to the resignation of longtime leader, Evo Morales. Now recent protests target the current interim president as one of Latin America's poorest nations reels from the coronavirus pandemic. Rafael Romo, CNN.
ALLEN: Next here, the global economy, forecasting the future of a pandemic, battered economy. Why the International Monetary Fund warns that things could get worse.
ALLEN: When will the world get back to work? The International Monetary Fund is trying to answer that. But even its updated outlook, forecasting a plunge of almost 5 percent for the global economy, can't paint a full picture. That is because our economic faith is linked to the virus. The IMF managing director says, a second wave could make things even worse. John Defterios, is in Abu Dhabi for us with more on the IMF's latest warning. Good to see you John, how are you?
JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Thanks Natalie. Well, this is one of those incredible challenges. No, -- I was going to say, it is one of this incredible challenges because the timing of this message from the International Monetary Fund comes on the eve of the G20 summit that's taking place or convened at least by Saudi Arabia, it will take place virtually between the finance ministers and the central bankers, and at the same time, Natalie, we have a case where the European Union leaders are trying to finally hold together their E.U. wide package, due to the coronavirus.
They are suggesting here, look, don't lower your guard now and collaborate. Don't clash with your partners, because it is important to be cohesive. There are four things that the IMF Managing Director Georgieva came out with here. Number one was this idea that the second wave could be damaging.
You've been reporting on it all hour, India going to pass a million cases. The challenges that we see in Latin America. Labor market, disruptions that are taking place right now and dislocation of the labor market, double digit unemployment United States, even worse in some of the developing economies.
Poverty rates are rising right now. And we see inequality widening, which is a huge challenge. And finally, and I think it was right for her to point out, that the SME, the small and medium sized enterprises, Natalie, they could see bankruptcies triple and we know those who follow the economies around the world that small business really drives employment. So, she is suggesting in the second wave, and the second round of support, even though $11 trillion have been put in place, be much more targeted with the support to help those on the lower rungs of society.
ALLEN: Yes, and we have been talking about the situation with China and Washington. China posted better than expected growth, but will strain ties between Washington and Beijing hampered this global recovery?
DEFTERIOS: That is one of the risks that the IMF Managing Director Georgieva was putting forward here. It's not good if you have number one and number two sized economies, kind of clashing. There is an almost a day that doesn't go by right now where Washington is not chasing Beijing on four to five issues. Even today, it's the same thing.
I saw Kristie Lu Stout's report coming out of Hong Kong. This is not good. So, what does it mean for the outlook going forward? Let's take a look at the forecast update of the IMF that came out in June. Pegging growth for China at 1 percent, I've seen higher estimates, even as high 3 percent for the year. But that is very dependent on the U.S. and European recovery. Because they are major trading blocs and suck in imports from China, and the overall economy is expected to contract nearly 5 percent. That is kind of the state of play for the United States, for the remainder of the year.
The other thing I'll kind of put into play here, also is that we see global trade contracting by 12 percent this year. There is a tendency when that happens that protectionist measures come forward, and this is a worry as the G20 meets tomorrow.
And finally, the case risings in India, but not only, other G20 members, Brazil and Mexico as well, really struggling with the caseload and the pressure on their medical systems, and this could hamper that recovery, if we are not careful and the money is not more directed, is what the IMF is suggesting, Natalie.
ALLEN: All right. So much to watch, we really appreciate you helping us with it. John Defterios in Abu Dhabi, see you again soon, John.
ALLEN: Job security is a thing of the past for many Americans as covid cases grow, 1.3 million more Americans filed for first-time unemployment benefits last week. The insecurity is also, of course, devastating small businesses. And John just mentioned how important they are. Phil Mattingly introduces us now to a baker who's store is selling southern biscuits closed, but who is still optimistic.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We sold out every day.
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Ayeshah Abuelhiga left her corporate job to launch Mason-Dixie Biscuit Co. she couldn't have dreamed of how big of a hit it was going to be. AYESHAH ABUELHIGA, CEO, MASON-DIXIE BISCUIT CO.: We had lines all the
way down to Costco, it is probably two miles long. And it was like as if that opening day lasted a month and a half.
MATTINGLY: The first generation American who grew up in public housing, and worked a half dozen jobs, just to get thru college, the comfort food pop-up was the ultimate success story, in the accolades. The permanent brick and mortar location, and most importantly, customer loyalty, followed in spades.
ABUELHIGA: It was really important for us to be kind of part of the neighborhood and the community and not just be in downtown.
MATTINGLY: Then came the pandemic.
ABUELHIGA: The first week or two was basically no traffic. I think we are making $100 per day. So, like it went to nothing.
MATTINGLY: Business never returned about 50 percent of its past sales, leading to this gut wrenching decision.
ABUELHIGA: We cannot sustain the business anymore, we should shut it down.
MATTINGLY: Abuelhiga writing the letter now tape on the window of her restaurant, a letter, the owner of a thriving business could ever imagine putting together.
ABUELHIGA: It was the last thing I wanted to do, and I avoided at all costs. What do you say to your team members? What do you say to their families? What do you say to customers that feel like they have been there for you the whole time?
MATTINGLY: Small businesses are a central driver of U.S. economic activity, more than 30 million in the country representing nearly 50 percent of all U.S. jobs. But as the crisis continued unabated, thousands of brick and mortar small businesses have taken the route of Mason-Dixie Biscuit Co. and closed their doors.
With nearly 66,000 businesses, closing their doors for good, since March 1st, according to data from Yelp. And some researchers pegging the total number at north of 100,000.
Even more are on the precipice, with 23 percent in a recent survey saying they can only survive for no more than six months in current conditions. Even some that received crucial federal pay check protection program loans, they're closing their doors altogether, like Mason-Dixie Biscuits. Yet in a sign of the very resiliency that defines what small business owners represents, a second business run by Abuelhiga, the first biscuit business once driven by customer loyalty to the restaurant itself, has taken off.
ABUELHIGA: Never in a million years could we have planned that it was going to be as crazy as it was. The demand search for us was upwards of 200 percent, a month over month.
MATTINGLY: Abuelhiga isn't closing the door to giving another restaurant a shot post pandemic.
ABUELHIGA: There is not a bone in my body that doesn't want to try this again.
MATTINGLY: But a small businesses around the country fight for survival, it strikes a chord, many facing this once in a century pandemic are clinging to each day.
ABUELHIGA: I can't say that you should feel like it's failure. It is really just closure on a chapter. But it forces you to think what is the next step. What is the next move.
ALLEN: Those biscuits look good. We really hope that they will come back. Coming up next here, national security concerns are heightened in the U.S. after a hack targeted some of Twitter's most popular users. That's next.
ALLEN: Real Madrid have captured the Spanish league title with a two to one win over Villarreal in La Liga play Thursday. Star striker Karim (inaudible) scored both goals for Real, legendary Real Madrid star, Zinedine Zidane wins his second title with the club, as manager, to go along with his crown as a player, back in 2003.
Real Madrid ended a two year hold on the Spanish crown by arch rivals Barcelona. The coronavirus pandemic stop play from March 10th to June 11th, and when La Liga returned, it was without fans. Something we will have to get used to.
The FBI is now investigating that huge cyber-attack on the Twitter accounts of the who's who of politicians and business leaders. It aim to scam people out of money through bitcoin payments. But as CNN's Brian Todd explains it, also raises concerns about national security, the economy, and the coming U.S. Presidential election.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Joe Biden has assured his supporters he will never asked them to send him bitcoin, cryptocurrency for donations. That comes after Biden's verified Twitter account, and those of many other famous people, were compromised by hackers, in a devastating attack. They got to the accounts of former President Obama, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, other celebrities like Kim Kardashian- West and Kanye West. And companies like Apple and Uber. And they did it, Twitter says, by doing what is called social engineering.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN BUSINESS REPORTER: What actually seemed to happen was that a Twitter employee was hacked. And that Twitter employee had sort of had access to the master controls, that could control or take over a lot of these accounts. TODD: After that infiltration, a fake tweet from Bill Gates said, I
am doubling all payments sent to my bitcoin address for the next 30 minutes. You sent $1,000 I'll send you back $2,000. The other famous accounts had almost identical inducements.
The FBI is leading an investigation. Two U.S. Intelligence officials tells CNN, it is too early to tell if the attack is by a lone wolf hacker or someone working for a nations state. By cyber experts are calling this nightmarish for what could happen in the future. President Trump's Twitter account does not appear to have been targeted in this hack, but the president makes many of his announcements and dictates policy, sometimes over Twitter. What if.
LAURA ROSENBERGER, SENIOR FELLOW AT THE GERMAN MARSHALL FUND: You could imagine how deeply damaging it could be if you saw a tweet from a compromised account, whether it's the president, or somebody else in a senior position, saying, you know, that we have launched some sort of attack on North Korea. And North Korea might not know whether or not that is true.
TODD: Experts say Americas enemies could send the financial markets into a spiral, by seizing a verified Twitter account and putting out false information. And the fact that Biden's account was compromised, in the midst of election season is very concerning. Because of fake tweets, the hackers could have sent from his account.
BEN BUCHANAN, AUTHOR, THE HACKE AND THE STATE: It certainly seems like they may have been able technically speaking, they may have make him say things he never would say. Like, they could indeed be quite damaging to him.
TODD: And analysts say hackers could grabbed Twitter accounts, sent fake information and spark dangerous confusion on election day itself.
ROSENBERGER: You say had a lot of accounts that suddenly started tweeting allegations that there had been fraud or something was rigged, or that there was foreign interference. And the people couldn't trust the outcome. And you could also imagine people having, you know, significant doubts then created about the outcome of the election, even if there is none of that kind of activity that had happened.
TODD: And there is concern about how this hack might have prevented legitimate important information from getting out. Right after the discovery of the hack, Twitter had to temporarily shut down much of its network, a verified Twitter accounts, including the account of the national weather service. Which then could not issue warnings on Twitter about possible tornadoes hitting the Midwest. Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.
ALLEN: The FBI is launching an investigation after dozens of high- profile Twitter accounts were hacked on Wednesday. Bill Gates, former president Barack Obama, Elon Musk, or among many other well-known names hijacked in cryptocurrency scams. The historic hack is raising national security concerns as it exposed vulnerabilities in Twitters system.
I'm Natalie Allen, and I invite you to follow me on Instagram, or Twitter. More news next here with our new guy, Kim (inaudible), he's right over there. I will see you tomorrow.