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Ukraine reports steady rise in COVID cases, deaths

FILE PHOTO: Medical workers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) walk outside the infectious disease ward at the Oleksandrivska Clinical Hospital, where Olena Zelenska, the wife of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, is presumably being treated after contracting the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Kyiv, Ukraine June 16, 2020. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

KYIV (Reuters) - Ukraine has recorded a steady daily increase in coronavirus cases in recent weeks and the health ministry is urging people to observe safety measures to stop the epidemic getting out of control.

The ministry said new cases had risen to 1,453 as of Aug. 6, a new daily high since the start of epidemic. Ukraine reported 1,318 cases on Aug. 5 and 1,271 on Aug. 4. It also reported an increase in the death toll.

“The numbers are impressive and every day we set records. We have increasing numbers of complex cases, numbers of deaths. What numbers do we need to reach in order to think about compliance with the rules?” health minister Maksym Stepanov told a televised briefing.

He said the total number of infections had reached 78,261, including 1,852 deaths and 43,055 recoveries. Most cases were recorded in western Ukraine and the capital, Kyiv.

Ukraine imposed tough restrictions in March, halting transport, closing cafes and restaurants and banning public events, but eased the curbs in May to allow the economy to recover from a lockdown-induced recession.

Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; Editing by Giles Elgood

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