Yossi Cohen. AFP Contributor / Contributor

The director of Israel's foreign intelligence agency, Mossad, said in a briefing to health care officials on Thursday that Iran and its regional allies are intentionally underreporting cases and deaths from the coronavirus, officials who attended the event tell Axios.

What he's saying: According to officials who attended the briefing, Mossad Director Yossi Cohen said the situation in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Iran is much worse than the governments of those countries publicly acknowledge.

"There [has] been widespread infection and they are lying about it. The numbers the Iranians are reporting about are not true. The numbers of infected and dead I know about are much higher."
— Yossi Cohen

Background: Cohen has been one of the primary officials dealing with the coronavirus crisis after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked his agency to source medical equipment like ventilators and test kits from around the world.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 5 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

Australian officials in Victoria announced Sunday 17 more deaths from COVID-19 — a new state and national record.

The big picture: Australia was on track to suppress the novel coronavirus in May, but cases have been spiking in Victoria in recent weeks, where a state of disaster was declared last week, enabling officials to introduce restrictions including a night-time curfew in state capital Melbourne.

CDC director says he was not involved in decision to change coronavirus data reporting

CDC director Robert Redfield testified Friday that he was not involved in the Trump administration's decision to bypass his agency and instead have hospitals send coronavirus data to the Health and Human Services Department.

Why it matters: According to the COVID Tracking Project, data on coronavirus hospitalizations has been "unstable since July 15" — five days after the change.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 19,648,084 — Total deaths: 727,024 — Total recoveries — 11,941,723Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 4,998,105 — Total deaths: 162,425 — Total recoveries: 1,643,118 — Total tests: 61,080,587Map.
  3. Politics: Trump signs 4 executive actions on coronavirus aid — Democrats, and some Republicans, criticize the move
  4. Public health: Fauci says chances are "not great" that COVID-19 vaccine will be 98% effective — 1 in 3 Americans would decline COVID-19 vaccine.
  5. Science: Indoor air is the next coronavirus frontline.
  6. Schools: How back-to-school is playing out in the South as coronavirus rages on — Princeton, Johns Hopkins, Howard to hold fall classes online.