Reuters World News Summary

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Brazil's Bolsonaro walks back decree to suspend worker pay amid coronavirus

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was forced on Monday to walk back a decree letting companies suspend pay to workers amid the coronavirus pandemic, following barbs from congressional leaders and rising discontent over his handling of the crisis. A poll showed Bolsonaro losing the battle of public opinion as he attacks state governors for shutting down stores to slow the spread of the virus, which has tripled in four days to 1,891 confirmed cases, according to the Health Ministry. Deaths rose to 34 from 25 a day earlier.

Italy's coronavirus deaths slow, offering glimmer of hope

The death toll from an outbreak of coronavirus in Italy rose by 602 on Monday, the smallest increase for four days, while the number of new cases also slowed, raising hope that the most aggressive phase of the epidemic may be passing. The Civil Protection Agency said the number of fatalities from the month-old contagion stood at 6,077, while confirmed cases totaled 63,927, an increase of 4,789 over the past 24 hours -- the smallest rise for five days.

"Help us fight this": New Zealand PM Ardern appeals ahead of coronavirus lockdown

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appealed to New Zealanders to help fight the coronavirus pandemic, as the country prepared for a complete lockdown from Thursday to beat the spread of the virus. Cases of COVID-19 crossed the 100 mark in New Zealand this week as the government imposed self-isolation for everyone, with all-non-essential services, schools and offices to be shut for one month. The action takes effect from midnight on Wednesday.

Tempers flare in Italy as coronavirus toll keeps climbing

From insults for dog walkers to furious local officials telling residents to stay home and people from other regions to stay out, Italians' forbearance is fraying as their coronavirus epidemic enters its second month. As Italy's death toll has climbed past 5,000 and overtaken even China's, early scenes of communal singing from balconies are giving way to muttered asides and resentment against those seen to be flouting bans on public gatherings.

UK PM Johnson orders Britons: you must stay at home

Prime Minister Boris Johnson ordered Britons on Monday to stay at home to halt the spread of coronavirus, imposing curbs on everyday life without precedent in peacetime. All but essential shops must close immediately and people should no longer meet family or friends or risk being fined, Johnson said in a televised address to the nation.

Spain lauds the medics on the front line of coronavirus crisis

Spain paid tribute on Monday to front-line staff battling a worsening coronavirus outbreak that has infected nearly 4,000 health workers, who make up more than a tenth of known cases in the country. The virus killed a further 462 people overnight in Spain, Europe's second hardest hit country after Italy, bringing the death toll to 2,182.

Exclusive: Elite hackers target WHO as coronavirus cyberattacks spike

Elite hackers tried to break into the World Health Organization earlier this month, sources told Reuters, part of what a senior agency official said was a more than two-fold increase in cyberattacks. WHO Chief Information Security Officer Flavio Aggio said the identity of the hackers was unclear and the effort was unsuccessful. But he warned that hacking attempts against the agency and its partners have soared as they battle to contain the coronavirus, which has killed more than 15,000 worldwide.

Netanyahu ally, Israeli Supreme Court clash, with PM's future at stake

Israel's Supreme Court ordered the speaker of the parliament on Monday to put into motion a move in parliament, which he had rejected, that could weaken close ally Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's hold on power. The rare court intervention in parliamentary procedure followed Yuli Edelstein's refusal to hold a vote on March 25 that would likely remove him as speaker and fast-track legislation to bar Netanyahu from forming a new government with a corruption trial looming.

'Enough is enough': Trudeau tells Canadians to stay home, major province clamps down

A clearly unhappy Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday said people defying advice to isolate themselves to fight a coronavirus outbreak should "go home and stay home" or face sanctions. Shortly after he spoke, the premier of Ontario - the most populous of Canada's 10 provinces - announced a two-week shutdown of non-essential businesses starting late on Tuesday.

Democratic Republic of Congo locks down mining area, workers sent home over coronavirus

Democratic Republic of Congo imposed a two-day lockdown in part of its copper and cobalt heartland on Monday, as two of the country's largest mines took steps to reduce staff levels in response to an accelerating coronavirus outbreak. The governor of Haut-Katanga province, Jacques Kyabula, issued the lockdown order late on Sunday. He said the boundaries of the southeastern province, which is home to concessions owned by Ivanhoe , MMG Ltd and Chemaf, would also be closed after two people tested positive for the virus in the provincial capital, Lubumbashi.