Fri, 22 Jan 2021

BEIJING, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- More than 60 million cases of COVID-19 have been recorded around the world by Wednesday, according to Johns Hopkins University (JHU). The following is a timeline of the pandemic that the world has suffered in this special year of 2020.

On Jan. 11, health authorities in the central Chinese city of Wuhan reported the death of a patient "with viral pneumonia," which is the first death case from the virus which would be named COVID-19.

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Jan. 30 declared that the novel coronavirus outbreak has become a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).

On Feb. 11, the WHO officially named the novel coronavirus COVID-19, which stands for the coronavirus disease starting in 2019.

According to the WHO, the naming of the virus should avoid any stigmatizing by not referring it to any specific geographic locations, animal, individuals' names, species of animal, culture, population, industry or occupation.

Over 100,000 cases were confirmed worldwide by March 6.

On March 11, the WHO said the COVID-19 outbreak could be characterized as a "pandemic" as the virus was spreading increasingly worldwide. There were more than 118,000 confirmed cases in 114 countries and regions, including 4,291 deaths at that time, according to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

The European Union (EU) members agreed to reinforce the control of external borders on March 17, while some of them imposed nationwide lockdowns or called on people to avoid social contact.

On March 24, after a phone conference with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, then Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics until no later than the summer of 2021 due to the spreading pandemic.

Confirmed cases worldwide exceeded 1 million on April 2, with more than 51,000 people died, according to the Johns Hopkins University, as the United States reported the most cases and followed by Italy and Spain.

On June 29, the WHO confirmed the pandemic had already infected more than 10 million people worldwide, including nearly 500,000 deaths. "The critical question that all countries will face in the coming months is how to live with this virus. That is the new normal," Tedros said.

The worldwide death toll doubled in just three months. The grim milestone of a million deaths was reached on Sept. 28, as the United States, Brazil and India tops the list of death toll.

The number of confirmed cases worldwide surpassed 50 million on Nov. 9. The United States remains at the top of confirmed cases, followed by India and Brazil.

Global COVID-19 cases hit 60 million on Wednesday, with more than 1.41 million people died of the disease.

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