China stiffens defences against epidemic as death toll hits 56

in News

Published January 27, 2020, 7:02 AM

By Agence France-Presse

China expanded drastic travel restrictions Monday and prolonged a public holiday to contain an epidemic that has killed 56 people and infected nearly 2,000, as several countries prepared to evacuate their citizens from a quarantined city at the outbreak’s epicentre.

China has locked down the hard-hit province of Hubei in the country’s centre, an unprecedented operation affecting tens of millions of people and intended to slow transmission of the respiratory virus.

Its ability to spread appears to be “getting stronger” though it is “not as powerful as SARS”, top Chinese health officials said at a press conference.

A working group chaired by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to tackle the epidemic decided to extend the Spring Festival holiday

Read More China stiffens defences against epidemic as death toll hits 56

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