Italy saw its highest daily death toll from the novel corona virus, which has now claimed over 6,000 lives worldwide, forcing European governments to further tighten controls on Sunday.
The number of deaths in Italy rose by 368 to 1,809 – more than half of all cases recorded outside of China.
The Vatican took a drastic step to cancel Easter week celebrations when northern Italian leaders warned that they were running out of beds and artificial respirators.
Pope Francis left Vatican City on Sunday "on foot as on a pilgrimage" to pray in one of Rome's cathedrals for the victims of the coronavirus pandemic, the Vatican said.
All over France and Spain, which have also become European virus hotspots, cafes, shops and restaurants are closed.
France had ordered all non-essential stores to be closed, while Spain went one step further and prohibited people from leaving the house other than going to work, receiving medical care or buying groceries.
There were also cases in Germany in which border controls with France, Austria, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Denmark were introduced from Monday.
Chaos at the US airport
The United States banned travel to countries in the European Schengen free movement area last week and has since included Britain and Ireland.
The new restrictions messed up the airports, and passengers complained of massive queues as employees struggled with new entry and medical exam regulations.
President Donald Trump was tested negative for the disease after coming into contact with several members of a Brazilian presidential delegation that have since tested positive.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Sunday that the effects of the pandemic had "slowed" the American economy, but he did not expect a full recession.
The number of officially registered novel coronavirus cases worldwide was 163,930 with 6,420 deaths in 141 countries and territories on Sunday at 1700 GMT. This emerges from a list compiled by AFP from official sources.
The death toll in Europe was 2,000 on Sunday.
The disease has now hit all regions of the world, torn sports and cultural calendars, shaken stock markets and companies – especially airlines – and has often triggered contradicting government responses.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from a syndicated feed.)