Coronavirus: The 11 countries where WHO Europe says COVID-19 is on the rise

People enjoy the warm evening weather in Malmo, Sweden, Tuesday May 26, 2020 as a sign reads 'In Malmo everything is near. But now we need to keep a distance'.
People enjoy the warm evening weather in Malmo, Sweden, Tuesday May 26, 2020 as a sign reads 'In Malmo everything is near. But now we need to keep a distance'. Copyright Johan Nilsson/TT via AP
Copyright Johan Nilsson/TT via AP
By Lauren Chadwick
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Which 11 countries in WHO's European region have seen their COVID-19 outbreaks accelerate in recent weeks?


The World Health Organization says there are at least 11 countries in its European region that are seeing increased transmission of coronavirus.

As countries eased restrictions, many have seen a resurgence in cases.

At least "30 countries or territories have seen increases in new cumulative cases over the past two weeks," said Hans Kluge, WHO's regional director for Europe.

"In 11 of these countries or territories, accelerated transmission has led to very significant resurgence that if left unchecked will push health systems to the brink once again in Europe."

So what are those eleven countries and what does the situation look like in each of them? Many are located in eastern Europe or central Asia and are monitored by the WHO's European regional office.


Sweden has been in the news frequently for tackling the coronavirus outbreak differently than its Scandinavian neighbours and many other countries in Europe.

It didn't impose a strict lockdown and its per capita COVID-19 death rate is among the highest in the world.

The country has been recording more than 1,000 new daily cases in June, with data showing a steadily rising epidemic curve that is just beginning to flatten out.

Chief epidemiologist Anders Tegnell took issue with the WHO characterisation of Sweden's epidemic, stating that the increased number of cases was due to more testing. He added that the number of serious cases in intensive care and the number of deaths were declining.

Indeed, the country's public health agency shows that the number of new admissions to intensive care has decreased significantly and continues to do so.


Armenia has seen a steady rise in coronavirus cases since May and is now recording hundreds of new daily infections.

The government's data shows an epidemic curve with a recent increase in the transmission of cases. In early June, the country's prime minister said he and his family had tested positive for the virus.

The country's outbreak worsened after its lockdown ended in early May. To date, Armenia has recorded 23,247 cases and 410 deaths.


Moldova has been recording hundreds of new cases per day, with a significant increase beginning in June.

The small European country has recorded more than 15,000 cases and over 500 deaths.

Moldova began phasing out restrictions in May but many people still do not wear masks despite it being mandatory, some say.

North Macedonia

North Macedonia went from recording daily cases in the single digits during the month of May to recording more than 100 daily cases throughout June, often reaching nearly 200 cases.

The small country has recorded a total of 5,595 and 265 deaths.


Infections began going up after officials lifted restrictions. Health minister Venko Filipce said in a TV interview that residents had ignored warnings to social distance and avoid gatherings, according to AP.


After recording under 100 daily cases until mid-May, the country is seeing a rise in case numbers with nearly 500 daily cases recorded in late June.

Most recently, another 590 people tested positive in a single day in the country of just under 10 million people.

There are more than 14,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 174 confirmed deaths due to COVID-19, according to the World Health Organization.


Kazakhstan has seen an increase in cases from mid-April recording hundreds of new daily cases this past month.


Both the former president of the country, Nursultan Nazarbayev, and the health minister, Yelzhan Birtanov, recently tested positive for coronavirus. Birtanov was hospitalised for COVID-19.

The country of 18 million people has recorded nearly 20,000 cases and 136 deaths.


The daily number of confirmed coronavirus cases has been rising since mid-June. Albania first saw case numbers go down in May after an uptick in April.

Although the country still doesn't allow big gatherings, some report that many people have stopped adhering to social distancing.

The country has recorded over 2,000 cases and 49 deaths.


Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina has also seen a steady rise in COVID-19 cases, after daily infections had decreased significantly.

Recently, the Balkan nation reached a record of 109 newly recorded cases, according to the World Health Organization. The previous peak number of daily cases had been 101 on April 30. Authorities first began easing their lockdown restrictions in late April.

There are currently 2269 cases and more than 50 deaths in the country.


There has been an acceleration in transmission in the past few weeks after steady case numbers were recorded in April and May. The number of daily confirmed cases has increased significantly as of mid-June, with more than 200 new cases daily.

Kyrgyzstan has recorded a total of 4,200 cases and 42 deaths.



Ukraine has recorded 40,008 cases, a quarter of which were confirmed in the last two weeks. There have been 101 deaths in Ukraine.

The country has seen an increase in cases since April.

Recently, the wife of President Volodymyr Zelenskiy tested positive for the virus and was hospitalised.


The territory of Kosovo has recorded more than 2,000 cases and 37 deaths. At least 500 cases have been recorded in the last week, according to the World Health Organization.

Kosovo began reopening businesses in mid-May as part of a phased exiting out of lockdown.


The government warned that due to the rising case numbers they would have to reimpose certain restrictions this past week, according to AP.

Additional sources • AP

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