May 25 coronavirus news

By Ben Westcott, Brett McKeehan, Zamira Rahim, Mike Hayes, Melissa Macaya and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 0210 GMT (1010 HKT) May 26, 2020
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3:47 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

New Zealand aiming for no transport restrictions and all schools reopening within a month

From journalist Alex Lin in Hong Kong

Facebook/Jacinda Ardern
Facebook/Jacinda Ardern

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the country should aim to reduce its Covid-19 alert level from 2 to 1 by June 22. 

Alert level 1 means no restrictions on domestic transport or gatherings, and all schools and workplaces can open. 

If measures were relaxed to this level, the government risk assessment would be that "the disease is contained in New Zealand," and only "isolated household transmission could be occurring," according to the country's alert system website.

"It's the government's view that we should move as quickly as we safely can to alert level 1. On that basis, Cabinet will check in again on alert level 2 settings on June 8, and we've agreed that no later than June 22, four weeks from today, we will consider the move to alert level 1," Ardern said in a post-Cabinet media conference.
"The fact that we are even making these decisions shows the success we've had to date in fighting the virus. It highlights we can now make choices many other countries can't."
3:19 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

Brazilian President called "killer" and "trash" by angry crowd in capital

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro interacts with the crowd at Planalto Palace in Brasilia, on May 24.
Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro interacts with the crowd at Planalto Palace in Brasilia, on May 24. Evaristo Sa/AFP/Getty Images

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was abused by onlookers in the capital Brasilia after going out for a hotdog and drink on Saturday, in a video seen by CNN.

In the video, Bolsonaro eats and drinks while onlookers yell "killer" and "trash" in the background. The President is surrounded by a security team and at one point turns and wags his finger at the crowd.

Brazil became the country with the second-highest number of cases in the world over the weekend, with daily five-figure increases pushing it above Russia and the United Kingdom.

On Sunday, Brazil reported 15,813 new cases of the coronavirus -- pushing its total to at least 362,000. So far, at least 22,000 people have died in the country.

Bolsonaro has frequently dismissed the coronavirus threat, calling it a “fantasy” or “little flu.” He claims the economic impacts of shutdowns and quarantine measures will have a much more negative effect on the country. 

2:43 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

More than 20,000 new coronavirus cases reported in US on Sunday

Nurses care for a coronavirus patient in the intensive care unit at Regional Medical Center in San Jose, California, on May 21.
Nurses care for a coronavirus patient in the intensive care unit at Regional Medical Center in San Jose, California, on May 21. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A total of 20,634 new coronavirus cases were reported in the US on Sunday, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University, with another 633 deaths.

The totals includes cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as repatriated cases. 

The new infections took the country's total to 1,643,246 cases, with least 97,720 people killed.

You can follow CNN's total count here, updated every 15 minutes:

2:15 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

If you go to a bar or restaurant in South Korea from next month, the government will log your visit

From CNN's Yoonjung Seo in Seoul 

South Korea will adopt a cell phone QR code-based logging system for patrons of entertainment venues from June to aid contact tracing, it was announced Monday. 

Places like clubs, karaoke bars and restaurants must use the system, having been designated as high-risk facilities by authorities. 

Customers will need to receive a QR code at venue entrances using an app, with their information then logged by management.

People who refuse to use QR code downloading, or who don’t have cell phones, must still log their identification details with staff. 

According to the government, the information provided will be available for epidemiological investigation purposes only, and automatically discarded after four weeks. 

The system will be used when the country’s infectious disease alert level is at its two highest levels, health official Yoon Tae-ho said at a briefing.

1:43 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

After two months of lockdown, domestic flights resume in India

From Swati Gupa and Vedika Sud in New Delhi 

Domestic flight operations resumed in India today after two months of a nationwide coronavirus lockdown. 

Flights to and from all states, except for southern Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal in the east, will restart in a limited capacity.

Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal will resume flights on Tuesday and Thursday respectively, according to a tweet from Hardeep Singh Puri, the country’s Minister for Civil Aviation. 

"It was important and essential to have an early lockdown to ensure the pandemic didn’t spread, it is equally important that at some stage you have to open up,” Puri said at a press conference in New Delhi on Friday, 
“This order, which is being issued today, shall remain in force until 23:59 hours IST on August 24.”

Only asymptomatic passengers are allowed to fly and must wear a face mask and carry sanitizer.

Passengers must arrive at the airport two hours before their departure, having already checked in online as physical check-in services will not be provided. 

Travelers will also have to fill in self-declaration forms and download the government’s contact tracing app, Aarogya Setu.

1:15 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

Brazil says US travel restrictions based on "technical criteria"

From CNN’s Taylor Barnes in Atlanta

A new Trump administration ban announced Sunday for passengers coming to the US from Brazil won't undermine "important" cooperation between the two countries, the Brazilian Foreign Ministry said today.

In an email to CNN, the ministry emphasized examples of collaboration between the two countries to fight the virus and similar travel measures taken by Brazil to restrict travelers, including Americans.

“Brazil and the United States have maintained important bilateral cooperation to combat Covid-19,” the foreign ministry wrote, citing an announcement by White House representatives on Sunday to donate 1,000 respirators to Brazil.

The ministry also mentioned earlier announcements of US donations which they said were valued at about $6.5 million in support of Brazilian efforts to mitigate the health and socioeconomic impacts of the virus.

“The decision by the US government was based on technical criteria which take into account a combination of factors such as total number of cases, growth trends, travel volume, among others,” the ministry wrote.
“The US restriction has the same purpose as an analogous measure taken by Brazil regarding citizens of all origins, including Americans, and similar measures taken by a wide variety of countries.”

On March 27, Brazil barred all non-resident foreigners from entering the country by airplane due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Brazil had already closed all of its land borders and restricted entry to foreigners arriving from countries and regions with a high level of coronavirus infection.

1:03 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

It's 6 a.m. in London and 1 p.m. in Hong Kong. Here are the top coronavirus news lines for today

Government health workers visit riverside communities to conduct coronavirus tests on May 23 in Para, Brazil.
Government health workers visit riverside communities to conduct coronavirus tests on May 23 in Para, Brazil. Tarso Sarraf/AFP/Getty Images

  • Global cases rise above 5.4 million: The number of novel coronavirus infections internationally has risen to 5,407,701, according to Johns Hopkins University, amid surges in Brazil and India. The global death toll stands at 345,060.
  • US bans arrivals from Brazil: Anyone who has been in Brazil in the previous 14 days will not be allowed to enter the United States. Brazil's Health Ministry told CNN the decision won't undermine cooperation between the two countries.
  • Brazilian government defiant: Speaking at a rally in Brazil Sunday, minister Gen. Augusto Heleno said that "everything will work out." The country's total number of infections is now at 363,211 -- the second-highest in the world. President Jair Bolsonaro appeared at the rally and greeted crowds without a face mask.
  • British political aide in hot water: UK leader Boris Johnson said he will not fire top aide Dominic Cummings despite multiple reported lockdown breaches. Speaking at a press conference Sunday, Johnson said Cummings had acted "responsibly, legally and with integrity."
  • South Africa kick-starts its economy: President Cyril Ramaphosa announced on Sunday that South Africa would reopen the majority of its economy on June 1, while maintaining social distancing and health safety measures. South Africa had its largest spike in new infections yet on Sunday, according to Johns Hopkins University figures, with more than 1,200 cases confirmed.
  • Schools reopen in Australia's largest state: New South Wales has sent children back to classes for the first time in months, with Australia's coronavirus epidemic mostly brought under control. Some precautions will remain in place, including no assemblies or excursions, hinting at long-term fallout from the pandemic.
12:14 a.m. ET, May 25, 2020

Brazil records more than 15,000 new cases in 24 hours

From CNN's Claudia Dominguez and Maija Ehlinger in Atlanta

A nurse tends to a coronavirus patient at the Gilberto Novaes Municipal Field Hospital on May 21 in Manaus, Brazil.
A nurse tends to a coronavirus patient at the Gilberto Novaes Municipal Field Hospital on May 21 in Manaus, Brazil. Andre Coelho/Getty Images

Brazil's Ministry of Health announced on Sunday 15,813 new coronavirus infections over the previous 24 hours -- taking the country's total to 362,211.

Another 653 deaths were also confirmed over the previous 24 hours, meaning 22,666 people have now died of coronavirus in Brazil.

Brazil is behind only the United States for total coronavirus infections.

11:47 p.m. ET, May 24, 2020

Days after reporting no symptomatic infections for first time in months, China confirms 11 new cases

From Alexandra Lin in Hong Kong

A medical worker collects coronavirus test swabs during the National People's Congress in Beijing, China, on May 24.
A medical worker collects coronavirus test swabs during the National People's Congress in Beijing, China, on May 24. Nicolas Asfouri/AFP/Getty Images

China has reported 11 new imported coronavirus cases, including 10 from Inner Mongolia, an autonomous region bordering Mongolia. The other is in Sichuan province.

China's National Health Commission said the total number of confirmed cases in the country is now 82,985, with 83 still active.

It comes after China reported no new symptomatic coronavirus cases on Saturday for the first time since the global pandemic began.

In addition, 40 new asymptomatic cases were reported today. A total of 396 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation. 

No new deaths were reported, leaving China's death toll at 4,634.

To date, 78,268 confirmed coronavirus patients have recovered and been discharged.