Bangladesh sees record 201 single-day COVID deaths as cases surge

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Bangladesh reported 201 COVID-19 deaths on Wednesday, the highest single-day toll since the pandemic started in March last year.

It was for the first time that the death toll had crossed the 200-mark in a 24-hour cycle in the South Asian nation of some 165 million people, taking the total death count to 15,593.The previous single-day high of 164 deaths was recorded on Monday. The first week of July saw 1,090 deaths, which is also the highest in any week during the pandemic in the country.

A total of 11,162 people were also diagnosed with the disease in the past 24 hours, taking the total tally to 9,77,568, officials said on Wednesday.

With coronavirus cases and deaths hitting new records, Bangladesh extended on Monday a strict nationwide lockdown by another week.The Delta variant of the coronavirus, first identified in neighbouring India, is behind the surge in infections in Bangladesh, overwhelming its healthcare system and raising fears of a medical oxygen crisis.

The variant hit Bangladesh’s border regions in the northern and southwestern regions last month and is now spreading fast in urban and rural areas across the country.

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