(Bloomberg) — Spain reported an increase in cases from the coronavirus outbreak, surpassing the number in Italy to remain at the epicenter of the outbreak in Europe.
The number of confirmed cases increased to 124,736, from 117,710 a day earlier, according to Health Ministry data. In Italy, total cases stood at 119,827. In what could be a sign of hope, the number of new deaths declined for a second day, with an additional 809 fatalities in the past 24 hours for a total of 11,744.
Health Minister Salvador Illa said Friday that the goal of seeing the spread of the epidemic slow is “within reach.”
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is likely to prolong a national lockdown another two weeks until April 26, according to reports in Spanish media. He initiated the restrictions on March 14 for an initial two-week period and subsequently extended them until April 11 as the virus outbreak accelerated.