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Factbox: Latest on the coronavirus spreading in China and beyond

By Reuters | January 28th 2020 at 08:05:29 GMT +0300

FILE PHOTO: A woman wearing a mask walks past a quarantine notice about the outbreak of coronavirus in Wuhan, China at an arrival hall of Haneda airport in Tokyo, Japan, January 20, 2020. [REUTERS]

The coronavirus outbreak that began in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, in the province of Hubei, has killed 106 people in China so far and infected more than 4,520 globally, most of them in China.

The virus has caused alarm because it is still too early to know how dangerous it is and how easily it spreads between people. Also because it is new, humans have not been able to build immunity to it.

Here is what we know so far:

* As of Jan. 27 the death toll in China had risen to 106, with 100 in Hubei province, authorities reported. Another 4,515 people in China had been infected. There were 2,714 confirmed cases in Hubei province, up from 1,423 on Jan. 26.

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* Thailand and Hong Kong have each reported eight cases of infection; the United States, Australia, Taiwan, Singapore and Macau have five each; Japan, South Korea and Malaysia each have reported four; France three; Vietnam and Canada two each, and one each in Germany, Sri Lanka and Nepal.

* No fatalities have been reported outside China.

* The previously unknown coronavirus strain is believed to have emerged late last year from illegally traded wildlife at an animal market in Wuhan, a city of 11 million people.

* Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited Wuhan on Monday in an apparent effort to boost morale in the city as Beijing moved to display its intent to tackle the crisis seriously.

* The World Health Organisation said that while the outbreak was an emergency for China, it was not yet a global health emergency.

* Severe travel restrictions have been put in place in several Chinese cities. In Wuhan, urban transport is shut and outgoing flights suspended.

* Tangshan, China’s largest steelmaking city in northern Hebei province, suspended all public transit within the city.

* Beijing suspended most bus services to Hebei province.

* Among other measures to contain the virus, China halted all group tours, affecting tourism both at home and to other countries, from Jan. 27.

* China’s Tibet Autonomous Region has temporarily closed all tourist sites to prevent the virus spreading.

* The United States warned against travel to China, while Canada issued a warning against travel to Hubei province.

* Asian stocks extended a global selloff on Tuesday as China took more drastic steps to combat the virus, raising concerns about a drag on global economic growth.

* South Korea said it was going “all-out” to contain the outbreak and vowed to stabilize financial markets should volatility worsen.

* Countries including France, Italy, Japan, Australia and the United States are working to evacuate citizens from Wuhan.

* Some experts believe the virus is not as dangerous as the 2002-03 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) that killed nearly 800 people, or the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), which has killed more than 700 people since 2012.


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