World Health Organization concerned about coronavirus cases with no clear link

27 Février, 2020, 10:16 | Auteur: Yves Courtet
  • The WHO warned that a surge in cases in other parts of the world was

The World Health Organization on Monday said the new coronavirus epidemic had "peaked" in China but warned that a surge in cases elsewhere was "deeply concerning" and all countries should prepare for a "potential pandemic".

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus also said, "Although WHO has declared the outbreak a public health emergency of worldwide concern, the outbreak has not met the criteria needed to be described as a pandemic when it comes to its geographical spread and impact".

"For the moment we are not witnessing the uncontained global spread of this virus and we are not witnessing large-scale deaths", Tedros told reporters in Geneva on Monday. "It could even be messy".

In Italy, six people have died after the country's cases jumped to more than 200.

Tedros urged governments and citizens alike to focus on preventing further infections: "We must focus on containment, while doing everything we can to prepare for a potential pandemic". That's up sharply from last Thursday, when the country had just 51 cases.

"Our window of opportunity is narrowing", Tedros said, though he stopped short of calling the Iranian cases a tipping point in the outbreak.

The new virus, which originated previous year in Hubei province in China, causes a respiratory disease called Covid-19.

At a Politburo meeting chaired by Chinese President Xi Jinping Friday, the leadership said the epidemic's peak "has not yet arrived", and the situation in Hubei and Wuhan remains "grim and complex", according to state media.

The head of the World Health Organization announced that COVID-19 could become a pandemic - but he says it hasn't reached that stage.

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As part of the containment efforts, school holidays were extended nationally while the 2.5 million people of Daegu were told to remain indoors.

Most people on the streets were wearing masks Friday, but many businesses were closed and workers sprayed disinfectant outside the church.

"With so many confirmed cases here I'm anxious that Daegu will become the second Wuhan", said Seo Dong-min, 24, referring to Hubei's capital, where the virus first emerged. For example, the passengers on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan were quarantined.

The Diamond Princess docked at the Japanese port of Yokohama on February 3 and was placed under quarantine two days later, as passengers and crew tested positive for COVID-19.

At the end of Monday, China's National Health Commission's had recorded 77,658 cases in the mainland, and 2,663 deaths.

As of Saturday morning, the number of confirmed cases outside China were reported in Japan (727), South Korea (346), Singapore (86), Hong Kong (69), Thailand (35), Taiwan (26), Malaysia (22), Iran (18), Australia (17), Italy (16), Germany (16), Vietnam (16), the U.S. (16), France (12), the UAE (11), Macau (10), the United Kingdom (nine), Canada (nine), India (three), the Philippines (three), Russian Federation (two), Spain (two), Israel (one), Egypt (one), Lebanon (one), Cambodia (one), Finland (one), Nepal (one), Sri Lanka (one), Sweden (one) and Belgium (one).

But Hubei's figures have raised questions as officials have changed methods of counting cases twice and amended their figures.

Scores of events have been cancelled or postponed as the outbreak has spread in the world's 12th-largest economy, from K-pop concerts to the World Team Table Tennis championship.

New hotspots were found in several prisons and hospitals, prompting the firing of a number of officials. We hope that we have succeeded by giving you the full details and information.

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