Venezuela, faced since the beginning of March with a second wave of the coronavirus epidemic, recorded a record number of 1,786 new cases of COVID-19 in 24 hours, an official source said.
• Read also: All the developments of the pandemic
“This is the highest point in the history of the pandemic in Venezuela,” President Nicolas Maduro said on public television.
He said 9,468 new cases were recorded this week, in this country of 30 million inhabitants. Venezuela has 1,662 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
The president explained that the increase in the number of cases was due to the Brazilian variant, which arrived in Venezuela in March and which is more virulent. He notably qualified the Brazilian variant of “Bolsonaro variant”, named after the Brazilian president, whom he regularly accuses of having mismanaged the pandemic in his neighbor.
The opposition and NGOs have estimated for weeks that the official figures are below reality.
In an attempt to curb the epidemic, President Maduro has declared a new “radical week”.
Since the first wave in August and September, Venezuela has lived with a particular system, linking “flexible week (possibility of going out)” and “radical week” (confinement with opening of essential shops).
This is the third “radical” week in a row, Easter week with its traditional processions having also been placed under the sign of containment and the ban on gatherings. Schools, in particular, remain closed.
Venezuela launched a vaccination campaign in March with the Russian Sputnik V and Chinese Sinopharm vaccines. To date, the country has received 250,000 doses of Sputnik V out of the 10 million agreed to with Moscow.