* UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday called on the world’s leading mayors to take urgent climate action.
* More than 187.36 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines had been administered across China as of Friday, the National Health Commission said Saturday.
* The Russian Foreign Ministry on Friday announced a series of retaliatory measures, including expulsions of diplomats and entry bans, in response to the recent “hostile actions” of the United States. Russia will ask 10 US diplomats and five Polish ones to leave the country, the ministry said in a statement.
* US President Joe Biden and visiting Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Friday voiced commitment to further strengthening the two countries’ alliance to address regional and global challenges.
* The Philippines’ Department of Health (DOH) reported on Saturday 11,101 new COVID-19 infections, bringing the total cases in the Southeast Asian country to 926,052. The death toll climbed to 15,810 after 72 more patients died from the viral disease, the DOH said.
* India registered 234,692 new COVID-19 cases, the third consecutive day that the country reported over 200,000 new cases, taking the total tally to 14,526,609, said the data released by the federal health ministry on Saturday. Besides, as many as 1,341 people died since Friday morning, as the total death toll rose to 175,649.
* Thailand registered 1,547 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, raising the total number in the country to 40,585, the Center for the COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) said Saturday.
* The Philippines’ gross international reserves (GIR) level settled at US$104.82 billion as of end of March, compared to US$105.16 billion a month earlier, according to data from the Philippine central bank.
* The Republic of Korea reported 658 more cases of COVID-19 as of midnight Friday compared to 24 hours ago, raising the total number of infections to 113,444. The daily caseload was down from 673 in the previous day, but it stayed above 600 for four straight days.
* Two Russian warships on Saturday passed through the Bosphorus Strait in Istanbul towards the Black Sea, local media reported.
* Russia confirmed 9,321 new coronavirus infections over the past 24 hours, taking the nationwide tally to 4,693,469, the official monitoring and response center said Saturday. The national COVID-19 death toll rose by 398 to 105,193 in the past day, while the number of the country’s recoveries grew by 8,832 to 4,319,389.
* Italy’s imports and exports improved in February compared to the previous month, the country’s National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT) reported on Friday.
* Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Secretary-General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Jens Stoltenberg discussed a series of regional issues over the phone, Turkey’s presidential office announced on Friday.
* Argentina reported on Friday a record daily COVID-19 infections of 29,472 and 160 more deaths, bringing the national tallies to 2,658,628 and 59,084 respectively, said the Health Ministry. The previous most daily cases were recorded at 27,001 on Tuesday.
* Brazil on Thursday reported 3,560 deaths from COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, raising its pandemic death toll to 365,444. According to the Ministry of Health, during the same period, tests detected 73,174 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total infections to 13,746,681.
* Chile’s Ministry of Health on Thursday said 50 percent of the target population have been vaccinated against COVID-19. Some 7,600,908 people, or half of the 15 million people considered enough to create herd immunity in a country of around 19 million inhabitants, have been inoculated, Health Minister Enrique Paris said at a press conference.
* Omani authorities announced on Friday that the country is lifting the entry restrictions that had come into effect on April 8, noting all visa holders would now be allowed to enter the sultanate, the Oman News Agency reported.
* Morocco registered 587 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, taking the tally of confirmed cases in the North African country to 504,847, the health ministry said in a statement. The total number of recoveries from COVID-19 in Morocco increased to 490,921 after 555 new ones were added.