Coronavirus pandemic: Which politicians and celebs are affected?

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Hollywood star Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson are two of the most high-profile celebrities to be affected by the coronavirus [File: Robyn Beck/AFP]

The coronavirus pandemic has spread to at least 176 countries and territories, with the worldwide death toll from the virus surpassing the 25,000 mark on March 27.

Among the more than 553,000 cases recorded globally are government officials, celebrities and sports personalities as authorities around the world grapple to contain the spread of the virus.

High-profile events including the annual Met Gala – often referred to as fashion’s biggest night out – will not take place. The gala has been postponed indefinitely from its scheduled first Monday of May, according to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in the United States. 

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The Cannes Film Festival due to be held in France in May has also been postponed, with organisers now looking at June or July dates.

Hollywood actor Tom Hanks and his wife, actress and singer Rita Wilson, British actor Idris Elba, and Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, wife of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, are some of the best-known faces to be infected so far. 

Who are others affected? 

Government officials, spouses:

Carmen Calvo: Spain’s deputy prime minister tested positive for coronavirus on March 25, the Spanish government said.

Prince Charles: the Prince of Wales and heir to the British throne tested positive for the coronavirus on March 25. The 71-year-old is displaying mild symptoms “but otherwise remains in good health” said a spokesoman for the Clarence House royal residence, adding that he was self-isolating at a royal estate in Scotland. Prince Charles’s wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, has also been tested but does not have the virus.

Abba Kyari:  The Nigerian president’s influential chief of staff has tested positive for coronavirus, a source with direct knowledge of the matter said March 24. In his 70s, Kyari is an important figure in President Muhammadu Buhari’s government.

Rand Paul:  The Republican of Kentucky is first United States senator to test positive for coronavirus.

Prince Albert:  Monaco’s Prince Albert II has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the principality said in a statement on Thursday, adding there were “no concerns for his health”. The titular head of the Mediterranean enclave is continuing to work from his private apartments at the royal palace, the statement said.

Michel Barnier:  The European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator said in a tweet that he has tested positive for the virus.

Bento Albuquerque: Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro said on Wednesday that Mines and Energy Minister Bento Albuquerque has tested positive for coronavirus – the second cabinet member to be infected in the country. 

Augusto Heleno: Brazil’s national security advisor said on March 18 on his Twitter account that he has tested positive for coronavirus, though he did not have any symptoms. Heleno, 72, a retired army general and one of Bolsonaro’s closest aides, said he is currently under quarantine at his home while waiting for a second-test confirmation. 

Antonio Vieira Monteiro: The chairman of the Portuguese unit of Santander, Spain’s largest bank, died from the coronavirus on Wednesday, the second victim of the disease in Portugal. Vieira Monteiro, 73, became chairman of Santander Totta in 2019 after seven years as chief executive. 

Jeremy Issacharoff: Israel’s ambassador to Germany has tested positive for the coronavirus, the Israeli Foreign Ministry said in a statement March 17. The Israeli diplomat at the embassy in Berlin was reported to have contracted the virus, following a meeting with a deputy from the Federal Assembly of Germany, whose name was not mentioned.

Friedrich Merz: The 64-year-old politician, who has been campaigning to lead Germany’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) at a congress planned for this year, said on Twitter on March 17 that he tested positive for coronavirus and was under self-quarantine at home.

Kozo Tashima:  The head of Japan’s football association tested positive for the virus on March 17. Tashima is also deputy head of Japan‘s Olympic Committee.

Nadine Dorries:  A minister in the United Kingdom’s health department was the first British politician to test positive on March 10.

Peter Dutton:  The Australian home affairs minister is under quarantine in hospital after contracting the virus.

Massoumeh Ebtekar:  The Iranian vice president is the country’s top government official to be infected by the virus, which has also affected several senior officials in the country. Iraj Harirchi, Iran’s deputy health minister, is also stricken. Iran is the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in the Middle East.

Sophie Gregoire Trudeau: On March 12, the wife of Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau tested positive for COVID-19 following a trip to the United Kingdom. Gregoire Trudeau said she planned to remain in isolation for the next two weeks, together with her husband. Her symptoms have been described as mild.

Begona Gomez: Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s wife tested positive, officials in his office said late on Saturday. While Begona Gomez tested positive, the health of both she and the prime minister was fine, the officials said. Spain said it would place the entire country under lockdown as the number of diagnosed cases exceeded 6,000.

Quim Torra: The local leader of Spain’s Catalonia region said on March 16 that he had tested positive for the coronavirus and that he was going into self-isolation in a government building.

Pere Aragones: The Catalan deputy head of government announced on March 15 that he had also tested positive for coronavirus.

Irene Montero: The Spanish minister tested positive on March 15 and has been put under quarantine along with her partner, Deputy Prime Minister Pablo Iglesias. 

Franck Riester: Earlier this week, the French culture minister said he was staying at his home in Paris after contracting the virus. France has also imposed a partial lockdown to check the spread of COVID-19.

Francis Suarez:  In the United States, Miami city’s mayor confirmed, on March 13, that he has contracted COVID-19.

Fabio Wajngarten: The press secretary for Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive after he returned from a US trip where he met, among others, US President Donald Trump, who later tested negative for the virus.

Michal Wos: Poland’s environment minister has tested positive for coronavirus, he said in a tweet on March 16 .

Oumarou Idani: Burkina Faso’s minister of mines has tested positive.

Stanislas Ouaro: Burkina Faso’s minister of education is confirmed to have COVID-19.

Simeon Sawadogo: Burkina Faso’s interior minister has the new coronavirus.

Alpha Barry: Burkina Faso’s foreign minister tested positive for COVID-19, he said on Twitter on March 20.

Boris Johnson: The prime minister of the United Kingdom said on March 27 that he tested positive for coronavirus and was self isolating.

Matthew Hancock: Britian’s Health Secretary Matthew Hancock announced on March 27 he tested positive for the coronavirus.

Hancock said he would be self-isolating and working from home.

Celebrities:

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson: The popular Hollywood couple announced on March 11 that they were infected by the coronavirus and were placed in quarantine in a Gold Coast hospital in Australia. 

Luis Sepulveda: The best-selling Chilean writer, who lives in northern Spain, also said he was infected. Reports say he showed symptoms of the coronavirus in February, after he returned from a literary festival in Portugal.

Idris Elba: The British actor and musician said he has tested positive for COVID-19 on March 16 in a video posted on Twitter, and that although he had no symptoms so far he was isolating himself from others. 

Kristofer Hivju: The 41-year-old Game of Thrones actor, who played the role of Tormund, has tested positive for the new coronavirus on March 17. Known for his fiery red hair and beard, he said and his family were in self-isolation at home in Norway.

Daniel Dae Kim: The South Korean-American actor best known for the television series Hawaii Five-0, said on Thursday that he had tested positive for the coronavirus. Kim, speaking from his home in Hawaii, announced the news in an Instagram posting and video.

Placido Domingo: On March 22, the Spanish opera singer said he had tested positive for coronavirus and had gone into self-isolation with his family. 

Athletes, teams: 

Serhat Guler: On March 25, the Turkish Boxing Federation said national team member Serhat Guler and trainer Seyfullah Dumlupinar tested positive for the coronavirus after returning from an Olympic qualifying competition in London. 

A third name was not mentioned but the statement said the federation was awaiting test results from two other athletes who showed symptoms.

Marco Sportiello: The goalkeeper for Italian football team Atalanta tested positive for coronavirus on March 24.

Jason Collins: On March 24, Collins, who played 13 National Basketball Association (NBA) seasons from 2001 to 2014 and who spent seven-plus years with the Brooklyn Nets, said on Twitter he believes he caught coronavirus on March 4 when the Nets hosted the Memphis Grizzlies.

Ottawa Senators: An unidentified Ottawa Senators player has tested positive for the new coronavirus, the first known case in North America’s National Hockey League. The Senators said the player has mild symptoms and is in isolation, and that they were notifying anyone who had close contact with him.

Deportivo Alaves: The Spanish football club confirmed a total of 15 positive coronavirus cases, including three players from the first team squad and seven members of the coaching staff. None of those affected have displayed any symptoms, the La Liga side said in a statement on March 18. 

Blaise Matuidi: The Juventus and France midfielder has tested positive for the coronavirus, the Turin-based Serie A club said in a statement on March 17. Juve said Matuidi, a World Cup winner with France in 2018, was in self-isolation at home and not showing any symptoms.

Daniele Rugani: Another Juventus player and Italian defender has also tested positive.

Mikel Arteta: On March 12, the 37-year-old Arsenal manager was the first in England’s football Premier League to be diagnosed with the coronavirus. 

Callum Hudson-Odoi: On the same day, the 19-year-old Chelsea winger also said he was infected. 

Paulo Dybala: The Italy-based Argentinian footballer announced his diagnosis on Friday. Italy is the worst-hit country after China by the pandemic, which has killed more than 1,800 people in the Mediterranean nation.

Rudy Gobert: The NBA Utah Jazz basketball star triggered criticism after he was seen carelessly touching microphones and voice recorders at a media event on March 9 after he was diagnosed with the virus. 

Donovan Mitchell: Another NBA Utah Jazz player also tested positive for COVID-19 days later on March 12.

Christian Wood: The Detroit Pistons forward is “under the care of team medical staff and in self-isolation” since testing positive, the NBA team said on March 15.     

Brooklyn Nets: Four players on the NBA Brooklyn Nets basketball team tested positive for the coronavirus on March 17.

Fernando Gaviria: The Colombian cyclist confirmed on March 12 that he contracted coronavirus while racing during an event in the United Arab Emirates, and was admitted to a hospital in the Gulf nation. 

Dmitry Strakhov: He was the second cyclist at the UAE Tour to have been diagnosed with the virus on the same day.

Sampdoria: Five footballers from the Italian club have tested positive, along with the team’s doctor. 

Dusan Vlahovic: The Serbian striker for Fiorentina, another Serie A club, is also infected.

Marcus Smart: The Boston Celtics guard tested positive as the number of confirmed cases in the NBA continues to grow. 

Paulo Dybala: The Juventus and Argentina football forward had tested positive for coronavirus but has no symptoms.

Marouane Fellaini: The former Manchester United football player who currently plays for the Chinese Super League has COVID-19, he said on Instagram.

Deaths of celebrities and officials

Steven Dick: The deputy head of mission at the British Embassy in Budapest has died after contracting coronavirus, the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office said on March 25.

Floyd Cardoz: The Season 3 winner of the United States show Top Chef Masters died on March 25 after testing positive for coronavirus.

Manu Dibango: The 86-year-old Cameroonian Afro-jazz legend died in Paris on March 24, his representative said.

 

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