England topped Europe’s grim league table for highest levels of excess deaths during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new analysis published Thursday by Britain’s Office for National Statistics. The analysis of more than 20 European countries — including the four nations of the United Kingdom — found that England’s death rate was 7.55 percent higher this year through the end of May, compared with its five-year average. Spain was next, with a 6.65 percent increase over its average. Scotland was 5.11 percent above its average and Belgium 3.89 percent.

When asked by a reporter if he was “ashamed” by the findings, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson responded, “We mourn every loss of life that we’ve had throughout the coronavirus epidemic.” But he added that “clearly this country has had a massive success now in reducing the numbers of those tragic deaths.”

According to the U.K. assessment, Spain had Europe’s highest national mortality peak, with the number of deaths 138.5 percent higher at the beginning of April than in previous years. England had the second-highest peak: In mid-April, the number of excess deaths was 107.6 percent higher than the average. The number of coronavirus patients dying in British hospitals each day has fallen sharply since then. But Johnson’s government has come under criticism for having been later than other European countries to impose a lockdown, for not providing enough protective equipment to front-line health workers and for failing to quickly roll out a robust test-and-trace system.

Edward Morgan, an expert at the Office for National Statistics, said that the first half of 2020 saw “extraordinary increases in mortality rates across countries in Western Europe above the 2015 to 2019 average.”

He said that in some countries, including Italy and Spain, the numbers were localized to specific regions, whereas the increase in deaths in Britain was more geographically widespread. A breakdown by city showed that at its worst, the death rate in Bergamo in northern Italy was 847.7 percent higher than normal; in Madrid, it was 432.7 percent higher than normal Some cities actually saw fewer deaths than usual during this period. When the pandemic was at its worst in Rome, it still reported 2.4 percent fewer deaths than its five-year average.