Death toll in China’s new coronavirus outbreak hits 131

Death toll in China’s new coronavirus outbreak hits 131

BEIJING — The death toll in the outbreak of the new coronavirus 2019 (nCoV) in China has reached 131, and a total of 5,515 cases of infection have been confirmed so far, China’s National Health Commission said on Wednesday.

Nearly 7,000 more people in China are suspected to have contracted the new coronavirus. The largest number of cases was reported in China’s Hubei province, where the outbreak first started. New coronavirus cases were confirmed in all Chinese provinces except for Tibet.

On December 31, 2019, Chinese authorities informed the World Health Organization (WHO) about an outbreak of unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, a large trade and industrial center in central China populated by 11 million people. On January 7, 2020, Chinese experts identified the infecting agent as coronavirus 2019.

The new strain of coronavirus has already been identified in almost all Chinese provinces including Beijing and Shanghai, as well as in other countries such as Australia, Malaysia, Nepal, France, Thailand, Vietnam, South Korea, Singapore, the United States, and Japan.

The World Health Organization recognized the pneumonia outbreak in China as a national emergency but stopped short of declaring it as an international one. (TASS