Trump says peak is passed and US to reopen soon

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President Donald Trump says the US has “passed the peak” of new coronavirus cases and predicted some states would reopen this month.

Mr Trump told the daily White House briefing that new guidelines would be announced on Thursday after he had spoken to governors.

“We’ll be the comeback kids, all of us,” the president said. “We want to get our country back.”

The US has nearly 640,000 confirmed Covid-19 cases and over 30,900 deaths.

Mr Trump’s comments came after New York City reported a rise in virus fatalities to 10,367.

The president has been at loggerheads with state governors about the timing of easing restrictions and reopening businesses. He has now conceded that his powers are limited to issuing guidelines.

The Trump administration had previously pencilled in 1 May as a possible date to reopen the nation, and on Wednesday Mr Trump said some states may be able to reopen earlier than that.

However, some health experts and state governors have cautioned against re-opening the economy too soon.

On Tuesday, Dr Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease expert, told AP news that the 1 May date was “a bit overly optimistic” for many areas of the country, as a strong testing and tracing system was needed before social distancing measures are lifted.