PARIS (Reuters) – The number of deaths in France from the new coronavirus rose by 18 on Wednesday from the previous day to stand at 29,861, an increase in line with the last week’s daily average but new cases of the COVID-19 disease caused by the virus rose sharply.
French health authorities said confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose by 918 to 165,719, after an increase of 541 on Tuesday.
In a statement, they said “a catch-up of missing data” had contributed to the sharper increase.
The figure of 918 is almost three times lower than April’s daily average of 2,582, when the pandemic was at its peak, but higher than last week’s average of 622, as well as June’s of 435 and May’s of 715.
France has been gradually easing its lockdown since May 11, with almost all businesses now open again.
The country’s death toll is the fifth highest in the world, but Reuters’ case count — which includes probable incidents in nursing homes — puts France in thirteenth place with 200,667 infections.
(Reporting by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Chris Reese, Kirsten Donovan)