The United States and Britain braced for one of their darkest weeks in living memory on Monday as the social and financial toll of the coronavirus pandemic deepened. Italy, Spain and France saw signs that they are flattening the pandemic curve, but still reported hundreds of people dying each day.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who was infected last month, was hospitalized overnight in what his office described as a “precautionary step,” after persistent symptoms. The 55-year-old Conservative leader, who has had a fever for days, is the first known head of government to fall ill with the disease.

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He remained in charge of the government and was awaiting test results Monday.

“(I’m) sure this is very frustrating for him … (but) nonetheless he’s still very much in charge,” Housing and Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick told the BBC. Still, Jenrick did not rule out a more prolonged stay in the hospital for Johnson.

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Some hard-hit European areas were seeing glimmers of hope — deaths and new infections appeared to be slowing in Spain,

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