Sunday, 27 September, 2020

China reports major drop in new virus cases; 143 new deaths

Residents wearing face masks and pyjamas are seen on a street in Shanghai China as the country is hit by an outbreak of the novel coronavirus China reports major drop in new virus cases; 143 new deaths
Gustavo Carr | 15 February, 2020, 12:25

China has reported another sharp rise in the number of people infected with the killer coronavirus, with the death toll now nearing 1,400.

The number of new confirmed cases has been steadily falling outside Hubei, with 221 infections reported on Saturday.

The commission received reports of 2,641 new confirmed cases on Friday from 31 provincial-level regions and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, including 2,420 in Hubei. But it was not immediately clear how that would be enforced, or whether the restrictions would apply to non-residents or foreigners arriving from overseas.

Many countries, including Turkey, have evacuated their citizens from the city of Wuhan - the epicenter of the virus - and other affected areas of China, placing them under quarantine and monitoring.

A worker moves medical waste at a hospital in Beijing treating coronavirus patients.

International Business Machines Corp said on Friday it had cancelled its participation in the RSA cyber security conference in San Francisco at the end of February due to coronavirus-related concerns.

The Mobile World Congress (MWC), the annual telecoms industry gathering in Barcelona, was also canceled after a mass exodus by exhibitors linked to the coronavirus.

A top Chinese official, in an interview with Reuters, acknowledged that coronavirus was a huge challenge, but defended Beijing's management of the epidemic and lashed out at the "overreaction" of some countries.

Body of missing British tramper Stephanie Simpson found
I feel robbed of the many years of the same time I feel overly blessed to have had the time with her that I did". The 32-year-old was hiking to the Blue Pools, near Makaroa, when she didn't return as expected last Saturday.

A World Health Organization (WHO)-led mission to China will start its outbreak investigation work this weekend, focusing on how the virus is spreading and its severity, director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.

"Through our efforts, the epidemic is overall under control", he said.

The virus, also known as COVID-19, is killing about 2 per cent of those it infects, but is able to spread faster than other respiratory viruses that have emerged this century.

The biggest cluster of infections outside China has been on a cruise liner quarantined in a Japanese port, with 218 people on board infected and taken to hospital.

The measure came as Egypt confirmed the first coronavirus case in Africa.

Outside China, there has been three deaths - Hong Kong, the Philippines and Japan.

Soldiers of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) stationed in Hubei are also busy transporting supplies and have conducted their largest transport mission on Friday, dispatching 249 people and 106 army vehicles to deliver 285 tons of supplies for daily use to 69 outlets.

Vietnam has imposed a 20-day quarantine on Son Loi, a rural community outside Hanoi where 11 of the country's 16 coronavirus cases are located, two local officials said.