South Africa registered 2,420 new cases of the novel coronavirus over the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of infections to more than 633,000, the Health Ministry said Thursday.

It said 174 more people died from the virus, taking the number of fatalities to 14,563.

Health professionals in the country have conducted over 3.74 million tests to detect the disease while the number of recoveries has reached 554,887, said the ministry.

South Africa is the worst-hit country by the virus on the African continent and has the seventh highest number of cases globally.

The virus has claimed more than 866,000 lives in 188 countries and regions since originating in Wuhan, China in December.

The US, Brazil, India and Russia are currently the worst-hit countries.

Over 26.19 million COVID-19 cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries over 17.4 million, according to figures compiled by US-based Johns Hopkins University.

*Writing by Sena Guler

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