Coronavirus: China lashes out at Donald Trump for creating coronavirus chaos

Marco Green
February 4, 2020

All but one of those deaths were in China; on Saturday, a man in the Philippines became the first to die of the virus outside China.

The World Health Organization last week declared the virus a global health emergency and expressed concern about how it was spreading in other countries, beyond those who were Chinese or who had travelled in Hubei recently.

A new study published Monday in the journal Nature said experts from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which specializes in the study of viruses, say the new virus is 96% genetically identical to a virus found in bats in southern China's Yunnan province.

It has screened more than 60,000 passengers arriving at its airports for coronavirus symptoms, as well as on its land border with Nepal after a case was confirmed there.

India also joined the United States and Australia in chartering an emergency flight to bring back citizens who had been stranded in Wuhan. Following this, the U.S. ordered the departure of all USA personnel family members under the age of 21 in China.

Travel and tourism shares also plummeted after a series of governments and airlines imposed drastic restrictions to stop the spread of the virus.

Wuhan and other cities remain in virtual lockdown with travel severely restricted, and China is facing mounting global isolation due to restrictions on flights.

Speaking at the meeting, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus coughed and interrupted his speech to take a sip of water.

The WHO instead recommends introducing screening at border crossings.

The US also flew people out last week and is planning "a handful more flights" while Russian Federation was due to start evacuating its citizens from Wuhan today.

But estimates by the University of Hong Kong suggest the total number of cases could be far higher than the official figures.

"I don't think that these two cases change the risk to the general public", said Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody.

But most people infected are likely to fully recover - just as they would from a normal flu.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry has called on the United States not to overreact to the coronavirus outbreak and instead to work with China in combating the virus, China's People's Daily newspaper reported on Monday.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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