Coronavirus deaths hit new daily record in Greece

FILE PHOTO: A medical worker wearing a protective face mask stands inside an ambulance during a protest outside a hospital, as the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak continues in Athens, Greece, November 12, 2020. REUTERS/Costas Baltas

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greece reported 121 coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday, a daily record, with hospitals in the north of the country under pressure as intensive care beds fill up with COVID-19 patients.

Health authorities reported 1,747 COVID-19 cases on Saturday, bringing the total since the first case was detected in February to 103,034. The death toll stands at 2,223.

"This year's Christmas will be very different," Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who visited front line workers in northern Greece on Saturday, told a local radio station.

Authorities have a nationwide lockdown in place until Dec. 7, with repeated appeals to a fatigued public to conform to distancing regulations.

"I really ask for some more patience and one more effort ahead of Christmas," Mitsotakis said.

A two-month lockdown in March helped contain the spread of infections but a renewed spike since October prompted new restrictions.

(Reporting by Lefteris Papadimas; Editing by Christina Fincher)

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