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Why Belgium has the world's highest Covid death rate

Belgium's Covid-19 figures look shocking but it's complicated

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Belgian Prime Minister Sophie Wilmes. Photo: Dirk Waem/Belga/AFP via Getty Images

Belgian Prime Minister Sophie Wilmes. Photo: Dirk Waem/Belga/AFP via Getty Images

Belgian Prime Minister Sophie Wilmes. Photo: Dirk Waem/Belga/AFP via Getty Images

It is rare for Donald Trump to credit other countries with world records - but at a press briefing last month the US president unveiled a list that put Belgium at the top. Unfortunately for Belgium, it was a ranking of deaths from the coronavirus.

According to numbers collated by the Johns Hopkins University, Belgium leads the world in deaths per head of population, with the latest count last Friday showing the country at 670 per million. By comparison, Ireland's rate is 256; Britain's rate is 405; the US rate is 199; Spain's is 537; and Italy's is 467.


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