Germany held a national memorial service on Sunday for the nearly 80-thousand lives lost to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The memorial event in Berlin was led by the German President,… and attended by Chancellor Angela Merkel and top German officials.
In his speech, the president paid tribute to the victims,… and expressed sympathy to the mourners of loved ones.
"Today, as a society, we want to remember those who died lonely and often agonizing deaths during this dark time. 80,000 people have fallen victim to the virus in our country so far.
"Today we want to express our sympathy to all mourners everywhere in our country. We want to tell them 'you are not alone with your sorrow, not alone in your grief'."
Meanwhile, Japan continues to grapple with the fourth wave of the pandemic,… as the country reported more than 4-thousand new cases for five consecutive days.
According to NHK news, Japan on Sunday confirmed 4-thousand 93 cases.
Daily cases in Osaka hit an all-time high with more than 1-thousand 2-hundred confirmed,… and Tokyo surpassed 5-hundred cases for the sixth straight day.
With surging cases in Osaka and Tokyo,… watchers say Japan may be forced to consider reissuing another state of emergency,… to curb infections before the Olympics set for July.
Brazil, one of the world's worst pandemic-hit countries,… is witnessing an uptick in COVID-19 deaths among pregnant women.
According to a local media outlet on Saturday,… an average of 22 pregnant women have died per week this year due to COVID-19.
This is more than double compared to last year's weekly average number of deaths.
Health authorities say the spike in deaths for pregnant women is mainly due to the Brazilian variant,… which is known to be more transmissible.
The government has warned women to delay any plans to get pregnant,.. saying that it is "best to wait a little" for safety.
Choi Min-jung, Arirang News.