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China COVID-19 Toll Hits 3,042, WHO Says Epidemic Not A Drill

Beijing:  The coronavirus death toll in mainland China on Friday increased to 3,042 with an overall 80,552 infections, as the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that the outbreak was “not a drill” as the number of global cases surpassed 95,000 with more than 3,000 fatalities.

Addressing the media on Thursday, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned that some countries were not taking the situation seriously enough, reports Efe news.

“This is not a drill. This is not the time to give up. This is not a time for excuses. This is a time for pulling out all the stops,” he added.

For the first time since China started publishing national infection data for COVID-19, there were no new infections in Hubei outside its capital Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, said the South China Morning Post in a report.

China’s National Health Commission said on Friday all of the 126 new cases reported in the province were in Wuhan.

There were 29 new deaths in Hubei, of which 23 were in the provincial capital, bringing the province’s total death toll to 2,931.

Meanwhile, Canada reported its first case of community infection involving a woman in British Columbia who had not recently travelled and had no known contact with another identified patient.

The woman was among eight new patients in British Columbia announced by provincial health minister Adrian Dix and Bonnie Henry, the provincial health officer, on Thursday afternoon.

Also, a member of France’s National Assembly was reported to be in intensive care after being infected with the virus, the South China Morning Post report cited lower house of parliament as saying on Thursday.

A snack bar worker in the building had also contracted the virus and was confined at home, while another worker in the lawmakers’ dining hall had been hospitalised with a suspected case of the illness.

On Friday, South Korea strongly protested Japan’s decision to impose a two-week quarantine on visitors from the country, which has now reported 196 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total infections to 6,284.

Meanwhile, outside China, 2,055 cases were reported in 33 countries.

As of Friday morning, the number of confirmed cases outside China were reported in South Korea (6,284), Italy (3,858), Iran (3,512), Japan (1,054, including 706 on Diamond Princess), France (423), Germany (400), Spain (261), the US (148), Singapore (117), the UK (115), Hong Kong (104), Sweden (88), Switzerland (87), Netherlands (82), Australia (59), Norway (56), Kuwait (56), Bahrain (52), Malaysia (50), Thailand (47), Canada (45), Taiwan (44), Austria (41), India (31), the UAE (27), Iraq (26), Iceland (26), Belgium (23), San Marino (21), Algeria (17), Vietnam (16), Oman (15), Israel (15), Lebanon (13), Ireland (13), Ecuador (13), Macau (10), Denmark (10), Greece (10), Croatia (nine), Brazil (eight), Czech Republic (eight), Qatar (eight), Finland (seven), Belarus (six), Pakistan (six), Philippines (five), Mexico (five), Portugal (five), Russia (four), Romania (four), Chile (four), Senegal (four), New Zealand (four), Azerbaijan (three), Georgia (three), Hungary (three), Slovenia (two), Dominican Republic (two), Estonia (two), Egypt (two), Indonesia (two), Bosnia and Herzegovina (two), and one each in Luxembourg, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Andorra, North Macedonia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Nigeria, Nepal Morocco, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, South Africa, Bhutan, Afghanistan, Tunisia, Ukraine, Poland, Armenia, Argentina, and Latvia, according to figures issued by the South China Morning Post.

The deaths outside China were recorded in Italy (148), Iran (107), South Korea (42), Japan (12), the US (11), France (seven), Spain (three), Iraq (two), Hong Kong (two), Australia (two), the UK (one), Switzerland (one), San Marino (one), Taiwan (one), Thailand (one) and the Philippines (one).

(IANS)

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