Coronavirus News on Thursday: The most important developments regarding Sars-CoV-2 and Covid-19

This article is constantly being updated.Not to be missed: For the latest developments and the most important background information, subscribe to our Coronavirus newsletter.Italy's Prime Minister reports positive trend in his country

1:20 am: In Europe, Italy has so far been the country hardest hit by the corona crisis. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has now expressed hope that the situation will ease further. "The curves for Italy are improving. The number of people who have been healed is increasing rapidly," said Conte of the Internet broadcast "Bild live". His country is currently in a "crucial phase". Conte said: "I hope we can get out of the crisis now."

In Italy, new encouraging figures were released on Wednesday. According to the civil defense, the number of newly recorded deaths fell again. The number of dead within 24 hours was 542. On Tuesday, the number of new deaths from the pandemic was 604, the day before it was 636. The total number of corona deaths in Italy rose to 17,699 by Wednesday.

More than 1.5 million corona cases are registered worldwide. Worldwide, however, the total number of detected infections with the corona virus has now exceeded the 1.5 million mark. That came out on Wednesday evening (local time) from data from the University of Johns Hopkins in Baltimore in the USA. The virus Sars-CoV-2, which was practically unknown until just over three months ago, can trigger the lung disease Covid-19. The pandemic has resulted in more than 87,700 corona deaths, and most of the known infections, according to the university, have more than 420,000 cases in the United States, a country of around 330 million people. Spain followed in second place with around 150,000 known infections. In Italy there were around 140,000. France, Germany, China and Iran followed.

Berlin court confirms prohibition of religious services 00.40: The Higher Administrative Court (OVG) Berlin-Brandenburg has rejected the urgent request of a religious association that wanted to take action against the ban on public services. In the opinion of the 11th Senate at the OVG, the current regulation does not lead to a disproportionate restriction on the freedom of religion represented in the Basic Law.

The OVG thus confirmed a decision by the Berlin administrative court. This stated without complaint that the services that the applicants wanted to celebrate in Holy Week and at Easter would pose a significant risk of further infections. The plaintiff's association wanted to celebrate services with minimum intervals and to record the contact details of the visitors.

Sales collapse – Starbucks cashes forecast for the year 00.25: Large parts of the USA are in the lockdown. This means considerable losses for the catering industry. Starbucks is no exception. The world's largest cafĂ© chain is canceling its annual forecast due to uncertain prospects. Business in China has recovered, but the US home market has now been severely affected by the spread of the virus, Starbucks said on Wednesday after the US market closed.

Sales in America have been declining since March 12, and the downward trend has intensified since then with increasing exit restrictions and branch closings in the country. This was not well received by investors, as the share price initially fell significantly after the exchange. A detailed quarterly report is expected to follow on April 28.
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