Pakistan on Friday reported over 3,000 new COVID-19 cases for the third straight day as the virus keeps spreading across the country, official data showed.

According to the Health Ministry, the country recorded 3,113 new cases during the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of infections to 389,311.

It is the third straight day that new cases surged past 3,000 as the country reported 3,306 cases on Thursday and 3,009 cases on Wednesday.

The South Asian country of over 200 million people also reported 54 virus-related deaths, pushing the tally to 7,897. The country’s recovery ratio also dropped from 95% to 86% as active cases rose to 45,533.

Authorities, in an attempt to contain the spread of the novel virus, have already re-imposed “smart” lockdown restrictions, including a ban on public meetings and rallies. They have also shut down cinemas and theaters, and banned indoor weddings and public gatherings.

Last week, Prime Minister Imran Khan warned the situation was worsening as new cases spiked in major cities.

“Pakistan’s second COVID 19 spike data is of concern: Increase in Covid patients on ventilators in last 15 days: Peshawar 200%, Multan 200%, Karachi 148%, Lahore 114%, Islamabad 65%. Multan & Isb Covid ventilators capacity utilisation 70%. Across the world there is a second spike,” Khan had tweeted.

Federal Minister Asad Umar, who leads the country’s anti-virus strategy, has also said the situation could worsen as hospitals are being overwhelmed.

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