June 19, 2020 / 5:36 PM / 20 days ago

New French coronavirus deaths sharply down

A sign reminding about social distancing is seen at the Eiffel Tower as she gets ready to re-open to the public following the coronavirus outbreak, in Paris, France, June 17, 2020. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

PARIS (Reuters) - The number of deaths in France from coronavirus infection rose by 14 on Friday to 29,617, the lowest increase in five days.

But the number of new confirmed cases rose by 811 over the past 24 hours to 159,452, double the average daily number of new cases recorded since the beginning of June, which stands at 405.

If probable cases in nursing homes are taken in account, the total reaches almost 196,000, according Reuters calculations, the 11th highest in the world on that basis.

New fatalities were halved compared with the two previous days, and were well below this week’s daily average of 24.

France’s death toll is the fifth-highest in the world.

The number of people in hospital with COVID-19 infections fell by 155 to 9,970, the first time that total has been below 10,000 in almost three months.

The number of people in intensive care fell by 25 to 727.

Reporting by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Franklin Paul and Alex Richardson

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