A man holds Brazilian flag between red balloons replaced over and around crosses before they were released by people as a tribute to the 100,000 Brazilians lost their lives to coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on August 09, 2020.
(Anadolu Agency/Getty/Kyodo)  

GENEVA - The number of confirmed coronavirus infections worldwide surpassed the 20 million mark Tuesday, with more than 730,000 deaths, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University in the United States.

The United States remains the country hit hardest by the infectious respiratory disease, reporting over 5.09 million cases and 163,000 fatalities.

In terms of confirmed coronavirus cases, Brazil came second with over 3.05 million infections and 101,000 deaths, followed by India with more than 2.26 million cases and 45,000 deaths.

Japan's infection cases stood at slightly above 50,000 with over 1,000 deaths.

It was only about 40 days ago when the world's total number of coronavirus cases first exceeded 10 million. The rapid pace of increase suggests that the novel coronavirus continues to rage around the world despite various measures to prevent its spread, such as social distancing and the shuttering of businesses.