The number of novel coronavirus cases worldwide is nearing 83.6 million as of the first day of 2021, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The US-based university has recorded 83,579,767 infections and 1,820,923 deaths as of Friday since the virus first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019.

With more than 345,847 deaths and over 19.97 million cases, the US is currently the country hardest hit by the disease, followed by India with 10.28 million cases, Brazil with 7.67 million and Russia with 3.15 million.

Other countries with more than 1 million cases include France with 2.67 million infections, the UK with 2.49 million, Turkey with 2.2 million, Italy with 2.1 million, Spain with 1.9 million, Germany with 1.76 million, Colombia with 1.64 million, Argentina with 1.62 million, Mexico with 1.42 million, Poland with 1.3 million, Iran with 1.23 million, Ukraine with 1.09 million, South Africa with 1.05 million and Peru with 1.01 million.

In addition to the US, countries that have lost over 10,000 lives in the pandemic include Brazil with 194,949 deaths, India with 148,994, Mexico with 125,807, Italy with 74,159, the UK with 73,627, France with 64,760, Russia with 56,798, Iran with 55,337, Spain with 50,837 and Argentina with 43,245, Colombia with 43,213, Peru with 37,680, Germany with 33,835, Poland with 28,956, South Africa with 28,469, Indonesia with 22,329, Turkey with 20,881, Belgium with 19,528, Ukraine with 19,437, Chile with 16,660, Romania with 15,841, Canada with 15,632, Ecuador with 14,034, Iraq with 12,824, Czechia with 11,711, Netherlands with 11,525 and Pakistan with 10,176.

At least 47,162,055 people worldwide have been confirmed to have recovered from the disease.

Since the pandemic erupted roughly a year ago, a vaccine by German firm BioNTech and US company Pfizer became the first drug to receive emergency validation by the World Health Organization on Thursday.

Earlier, the UK had become the first Western country to approve a vaccine against the novel coronavirus on Dec. 2, when it authorized the Pfizer/BioNTech jab for emergency use. Russia, meanwhile, had already been administering its own Sputnik V vaccine.

Up to 50 countries including the US, as well as the members of the EU, have now approved vaccines for either emergency or normal use.

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