A priest in Brescello, Italy performs a funeral behind closed doors due to social distancing measures during the coronavirus pandemic on March 27. Photo: Pier Marco Tacca/Getty Images

Italy on Friday reported 969 deaths linked to the novel coronavirus over a 24-hour period, marking the deadliest single-day tally in the country since the global outbreak began, according to data from the Health Ministry.

Why it matters: Italy had hoped the worst of the outbreak was over after reporting a decline in the number of new confirmed cases throughout this week. That trend continued into Friday, but was overshadowed by the death count.

  • “We haven’t reached the peak and we haven’t passed it,” said Chief of the Superior Health Institute Silvio Brusaferro, per Reuters, adding the declining infection numbers show “signs of a slowdown.”

Where it stands, via the Health Ministry: 9,134 people have died in Italy from the virus, as of Friday. More than 86,498 people have confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

  • Italy is behind the U.S. in terms of the number of people who've contracted the virus, per JHU data, but leads the world for the number of deaths associated with the pandemic.

Go deeper: Coronavirus dashboard

Go deeper

Robert Mueller speaks out on Roger Stone commutation

Former Special Counsel Robert Mueller testifies before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on Capitol Hill on Wednesday July 24, 2019. Photo: The Washington Post / Contributor

Former special counsel Robert Mueller responded to claims from President Trump and his allies that Roger Stone was a "victim" in the Justice Department's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, writing in a Washington Post op-ed published Saturday: "He remains a convicted felon, and rightly so."

Why it matters: The rare public comments by Mueller come on the heels of President Trump's move to commute the sentence of his longtime associate, who was sentenced in February to 40 months in prison for crimes stemming from the Russia investigation. The controversial decision brought an abrupt end to the possibility of Stone spending time behind bars.

Trump dons face mask during Walter Reed visit

Trump wearing a face mask in Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on July 11. Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump wore a face mask during his Saturday visit to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, according to AP.

Why it matters: This is the first known occasion the president has appeared publicly with a facial covering as recommended by health officials since the coronavirus pandemic began, AP writes.

Updated 13 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 5:30 p.m. ET: 12,607,510 — Total deaths: 562,338 — Total recoveries — 6,948,863Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 5:30 p.m. ET: 3,228,884 — Total deaths: 134,600 — Total recoveries: 983,185 — Total tested: 38,919,421Map.
  3. Public health: Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter: "Please wear a mask to save lives" Fauci hasn't briefed Trump on the coronavirus pandemic in at least two months — We're losing the war on the coronavirus.
  4. Food: How the coronavirus pandemic boosted alternative meat.
  5. Sports: Charge of "money grab" by college football.
  6. World: India reimposes lockdowns as coronavirus cases soar.