Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro at the Presidential Palace in Brasília, Brazil, in September. Photo: Andre Borges/picture alliance via Getty Images
Brazil became on Wednesday the third country to surpass 5 million coronavirus cases, as the virus death toll in the nation neared 150,000.
By the numbers: Brazil has the third-highest number of cases after India (almost 6.8 million) and the U.S. (over 7.5 million), per Johns Hopkins.
- It has the second-highest death toll from COVID-19 (over 148,200) after the U.S. (nearly 211,800).
The big picture: President Jair Bolsonaro has downplayed the virus and opposed lockdowns.
- Federal University of Rio de Janeiro epidemiologist Roberto Medronho told Reuters, "We are seeing the authorities easing social distancing more and more despite the number of cases."