The novel coronavirus outbreak claimed 572 lives in Brazil over the past 24 hours, health authorities said on Monday.

The COVID-19 death toll in Brazil — the second-hardest hit by the virus worldwide — rose to 101,049, while the tally of cases surged to over 3.35 million, including more than 23,000 infected in the past day, according to Health Ministry data.

Number of recoveries in the Latin American country has neared 2.12 million.

Sao Paulo, the country’s vibrant financial center, with a population of approximately 46 million, stands out as the most affected region of Brazil with 627,126 infections and 25,114 virus-related fatalities.

With a population of over 211 million, Brazil is seen as the epicenter of pandemic in Latin America.

In Mexico, the death toll hit nearly 53,000 with 292 additions over the past 24 hours, according to the Health Ministry.

The number of coronavirus cases climbed by 4,376 to 480,278, the ministry data showed.

So far, 322,465 people diagnosed with COVID-19 have recovered in the country.

Since first appearing in China last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 188 countries and regions. The US, Brazil, India, and Russia are currently the countries hardest hit in the world.

The pandemic has killed more than 731,300 people worldwide, with over 19.86 million confirmed cases, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University. More than 12.11 million people have recovered from the disease.

* Writing by Jeyhun Aliyev from Ankara

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