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  • U.S. citizen hospitalized in the central city of Wuhan became this weekend the first non-Chinese victim of the disease

    U.S. citizen hospitalized in the central city of Wuhan became this weekend the first non-Chinese victim of the disease | Photo: Reuters

Published 9 February 2020
Opinion

Sunday's death toll of 97 was the highest in a single day since the outbreak was first reported.

Workers restarted their activities in offices and factories in China on Monday, as the government eased some of the work and travel restrictions imposed after the coronavirus outbrake that has already killed more than 900 people, mostly in the Asian continent.

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However, Sunday's death toll of 97 was the highest in a single day since the outbreak was first detected in December at a seafood market in Wuhan.

Across the Chinese mainland, there were 3,062 new confirmed infections, bringing the total number  to 40,171, according to the National Health Commission (NHC).

The epidemic has caused huge disruption in China, with generally overcrowded cities turning into ghost towns over the past two weeks as Communist Party rulers suspended work activities, cancelled flights and closed factories and schools.

Throughout China, schools in provinces and regions such as Guangdong, Anhui, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Shandong, Hebei, as well as Shanghai and Chongqing, will be closed until the end of February.

WHO declared the outbreak a global emergency on January 30, days after China's central government imposed a quarantine on 60 million people in Hubei province.

Over the weekend, an American hospitalized in the central city of Wuhan became the first confirmed non-Chinese victim of the disease.

The virus has spread to at least 27 countries, according to a Reuters count based on official reports, infecting more than 330 people. Two deaths have been reported outside mainland China, both involving Chinese citizens.

Among the latest patients outside China, there is a group of British citizens staying in a mountain village in the Haute-Savoie in the Alps, according to French health authorities, raising fears of new infections across Europe.

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