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Indonesia passes Philippines with most coronavirus cases in SE Asia

JAKARTA: Indonesia reported 4,411 new coronavirus infections yesterday, taking its tally to 349,160, passing the Philippines with the most infections in South-east Asia.

Indonesia also reported 112 new Covid-19 deaths, with total fatalities reaching 12,268.

The Philippines recorded 2,261 infections and 50 additional deaths, taking its tally to 348,698 cases and 6,497 fatalities.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Wednesday his government has the money to procure coronavirus vaccines, but he would need more as he wants to inoculate the country's entire population.

The government aims to get vaccines to all Filipinos, which Mr Duterte said now number around 113 million, but priority will be given to the poor, the police and military personnel.

"All should have the vaccine without exception," Mr Duterte said in a late-night televised address.

The firebrand leader repeated that he prefers Covid-19 vaccine supplies to come from either Russia or China.

Both have submitted applications to conduct clinical trials for their inoculations in the Philippines.

"For me, either China or Russia, I am OK," Mr Duterte said.

Meanwhile, Malaysia reported 589 new coronavirus cases yesterday, raising its tally of infections to 18,129.

The country, which has imposed targeted lockdowns this month to rein in a new surge in infections, also recorded three deaths, bringing total fatalities to 170. - REUTERS

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