Saudi Arabia returns to normal life after lockdown. Image Credit: Agencies

Dubai: The number of coronavirus cases in Saudi Arabia exceeded 200,000 on Friday following a rise in new infections over the recent weeks.

The Saudi Ministry of Health reported 4,193 new cases on Friday, taking the total to 201,801. The ministry also said that 2,945 cases have recovered from the deadly infection, raising the total number of cases that have recovered in the Kingdom so far since the outbreak of the pandemic to 140,614.

Meanwhile, a total of 50 COVID-19 patients have died, bringing to 1,802 the total deaths due to the virus in the Kingdom.

Of the new cases, Dammam registered the highest number of cases with 431, followed by Al Hafouf with 399 and Riyadh with 383.

Meanwhile, Taif, Al Mobarraz Mecca, Jeddah and Al Qattif recorded 306, 279, 210, 169 and 168 new infections respectively.

The country of 30 million people recorded its first COVID-19 infection on March 2. Health authorities said in April the virus could eventually infect between 10,000 and 200,000 people in Saudi Arabia. The kingdom topped 50,000 cases on May 16.

Saudi Arabia’s numbers are the highest in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), followed by Qatar.

Coronavirus infections in the energy producing region had initially been linked to travel. But despite taking early measures to combat the virus, Gulf states have seen a spread among low-income migrant workers living in cramped quarters, prompting authorities to ramp up testing.