The World Health Organization’s (WHO) Eastern Mediterranean Region have confirmed 96,108 coronavirus (Covid-19) infections and 4,945 fatalities. The organisation has warned that the increasing demand exceeds the available medical supplies.
The WHO said data reporting continues to be a challenge in the region, as case reporting forms are not submitted by some countries and others submit incomplete reports.
The WHO added that multidisciplinary support missions to Afghanistan, Somalia, Syria, Morocco and Sudan are on hold due to travel restrictions and border closures.
Syria reported six new cases but no new deaths of the virus on Saturday, raising the confirmed infections to 25 and two deaths. The data comes amid international agency warnings that northern Syria’s town-sized camps crammed with displaced people could become breeding grounds for the virus.
In north-western Syria, which includes Idlib province, only 20 tests have been conducted so far, of which 18 were negative and two are still pending, according to the WHO.
Throughout the war, medics have been relentlessly targeted. US-based Physicians for Human Rights has documented 923 medical personnel killed since 2011, and the WHO says up to 70% of medical staff have left the country.
In Lebanon, security forces are conducting street patrols aiming to enforce the countrywide curfew. Lebanon recorded 11 new coronavirus cases, raising the infection number to 630, with no new deaths.
In the Turkish city of Istanbul, medical shortages are now being reported, with the number of beds in intensive care units now not enough.
“In Istanbul, there are 4,600 intensive care beds, and in only two to three days, 80% of them were occupied,” said the head of the Turkish Medical Association (TTB), Sinan Adiyaman. Turkey’s Covid-19 cases are rapidly increasing, as the country is currently recording over 4,000 infections daily, with a total of 52,167 cases and 1,101 deaths.
Moreover, Palestine has confirmed a new coronavirus case, raising the total number in its territories to 268, including 13 in Gaza, and two deaths.
In Israel, the death toll from the virus has risen to 103, with 10,878 infections. Meanwhile, a nonprofit technology organisation has set up a new website, CoronaTech Israel, that will be a one-stop-shop for technological solutions against the coronavirus.
Egypt reported 126 new coronavirus cases and 13 new deaths on Sunday, raising the country’s total cases to 2,065 and 159 deaths. Up to 447 cases have recovered.
In Cyprus, 21 individuals tested positive for the coronavirus on Saturday, bringing the total number of cases to 616, Ministry of Health officials announced. They added that there has been a decline in the numbers over the past 10 days. Greece has recorded 2,114 cases of coronavirus and 98 deaths in total.