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Coronavirus updates: Latest rise in number of cases casts doubt on containment measures

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Japan scrambling to prevent more cases of coronavirus on cruise ship

Follow Monday's latest news on the coronavirus outbreak here.

Mainland China reported another rise in cases early Monday as the number of deaths grew by 97, to 908. China's health ministry said another 3,062 cases had been reported over the previous 24 hours, raising the Chinese mainland's total to at least 40,171. That was an increase of 15% and broke a series of daily declines, perhaps signaling it was premature to think containment measures in China were beginning to work.

There have also been more than 300 confirmed cases outside China.

Japan is scrambling to control cases of coronavirus on the Princes Diamond cruise ship moored off Yokohama. Japanese officials reported some 60 additional cases on the ship Monday, for a total of roughly 130.There are at least 13 Americans with coronavirus on board and passengers have been confined to their rooms.  

The confirmed deaths surpassed the total number who died during the 2003 SARS epidemic, which killed 774 people, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

All but two of the confirmed deaths have been in mainland China, with one in the Philippines and one in Hong Kong. As of Sunday, there were 12 confirmed cases of the virus in the U.S.

The U.S. embassy confirmed over the weekend that an American citizen diagnosed with coronavirus died at Jinyintian Hospital in Wuhan, China.  

Planes carrying about 300 Americans from the Chinese city at the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak arrived at military bases in California and Texas on Friday. Passengers are under a 14-day quarantine. 

China is being criticized for failing to respond to early warnings about the coronavirus. Dr. Li Wenliang, who has since died from the virus, was silenced when he tried to sound the alarm. His mother wants authorities to explain why they reprimanded her son when he brought the virus to light.

Coronavirus — Lunar New Year
Children wearing surgical masks watch the annual Lunar New Year Parade in Manhattan's Chinatown on February 9, 2020, in New York City. Getty
 

Number of cases on cruise ship quarantined near Tokyo almost doubles

Japan's health ministry says about 60 more people on a quarantined cruise ship have tested positive for a new virus.

Health ministry officials said Monday they're double checking the results and couldn't immediately release the exact figure.

Health officials previously said 70 people had the virus among the 3,711 passengers and crew on the Diamond Princess, quarantined in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo.

More than 3,600 people are still in a 14-day quarantine on board the ship. 

— The Associated Press

 

Mother of doctor who died after warning about coronavirus wants explanation

The mother of a physician who died last week in Wuhan said in a video released Sunday that she wants an explanation from authorities who reprimanded him for warning about the virus in December.

The death of Li Wenliang, 34, prompted an outpouring of public anger at Wuhan officials. Some postings left on his microblog account said officials should face consequences for mistreating Li.

"My child was summoned by the Wuhan Police Bureau at midnight. He was asked to sign an admonishment notice," Lu Shuyun said in the video distributed by Pear Video, an online broadcast platform. "We won't give up if they don't give us an explanation."

The video shows flowers in her home with a note that says, "Hero is immortal. Thank you."

A makeshift memorial for Li Wenliang is seen at an entrance to the Central Hospital of Wuhan
A makeshift memorial for Li Wenliang, a doctor who issued an early warning about the coronavirus outbreak before it was officially recognized, is seen after Li died of the virus, at an entrance to the Central Hospital of Wuhan in Hubei province, China, on February 7, 2020. Reuters

— The Associated Press

 

Brazilians repatriated from China begin quarantine

Dozens of Brazilians repatriated from Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the coronavirus, landed Sunday at an airbase in the Brazilian state of Goias, where they will spend the next 18 days in quarantine. The operation, dubbed "Return to Beloved Homeland Brazil," has brought back 34 Brazilians and their foreign parents to an airbase some 93 miles from the capital city of Brasilia.

The Brazilian students and families could be seen leaving the aircrafts wearing masks that covered their mouths and noses, some waving small Brazilian flags at TV cameras. They were then transferred to buses that took them to transit hotels, equipped with internet, phones and leisure areas.

The 11 crew members and seven health professionals dispatched in each of the two aircraft will also be subject to observation for an undetermined time period.

Before landing in Goias at about 6 a.m. local time, the aircraft stopped in Warsaw, Poland, where six Polish residents repatriated along with the Brazilians were transferred to local authorities.

— The Associated Press

 

Chinese economy taking a hit as coronavirus outbreak lingers

On Monday, a large number of workplaces and schools remain closed and many white-collar employees will work from home, according to Reuters. Communist Party officials have ordered virtual lockdowns, canceled flights, and closed factories and schools, Reuters points out.

Reuters said the financial market in China has taken a hit, as shares dropped and investors chose safe-havens like gold, bonds and the Japanese yen.

The Chinese government has said it will liaise with transport officials to ensure a smooth process in having employees return to key industries such as food and medicines, Reuters reported.

According to Reuters, Chinese have taken to the country's social media platform Weibo to vent their frustration over the distrust of information provided by the government.

By Peter Martinez
 

South Korea, Vietnam and Malaysia report cases of coronavirus

South Korea reported a new case in a 73-year-old woman whose relatives visited Guangdong province in southern China, raising its total to 27. The family members, a 51-year-old South Korean man and a 37-year-old Chinese woman, were confirmed infected later Sunday.

Vietnam reported its 14th case. The Health Ministry said she is a 55-year-old woman in Vinh Phuc province, northwest of Hanoi, where six earlier patients were found to be infected.

Malaysia reported its 17th case. The 65-year-old woman's son-in-law was diagnosed earlier with the virus.

— The Associated Press

 

Health officials look into coronavirus cases in U.K. and Spain

A new U.K. case was the nation's fourth, while Spain reported its second in Mallorca, a popular island in the Mediterranean. European authorities sought to contain the spread of the virus by tracking down people who came into contact with those infected.

Both of the new cases were acquired during trips to France, officials said.

The new U.K. case is a known contact of a previously confirmed case there, the country's Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty said, adding that experts "continue to work hard tracing patient contacts."

In Spain, authorities were working to identify everyone who came into contact with a British man whose case was detected in Mallorca, Spain's National Microbiology Center said. The country's first case was a German tourist diagnosed a week ago in the Canary Islands off northwest Africa.

— The Associated Press

 

International experts led by the World Health Organization leave for Beijing

An advance team of international experts led by the WHO has left for Beijing, according to the Reuters news agency. WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus agreed on sending an international mission. He made a trip to Beijing for talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Chinese ministers in late January.

WHO declared the coronavirus a global health emergency on January 30. Tedros said he hoped the team would include experts from the CDC, Reuters added.

By Peter Martinez
 

Coronavirus cases in China increase despite reduction a day before

On Monday, China's health ministry said another 3,062 cases had been reported over the previous 24 hours, raising the Chinese mainland's total to 40,171. Monday's rise was a turnaround from a significant reduction in new cases reported Sunday, 2,656, down by about 20% from the 3,399 new cases reported in the previous 24-hour period. That had prompted optimism that the "joint control mechanism of different regions and the strict prevention and control measures have worked," in the words of a spokesman for the National Health Commission, Mi Feng.

Also Sunday, new cases were reported in Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, Malaysia, the U.K. and Spain. More than 360 cases have been confirmed outside mainland China.

— The Associated Press

 

Coronavirus affecting businesses and Chinese Lunar New Year

U.S. celebrations of Lunar New Year go on despite coronavirus fears and concerns

The coronavirus appears to be having an impact on the health of U.S. businesses. Asian American communities, like Chinatown in Los Angeles, are feeling the fallout from the outbreak.

Business owners tell CBS News they are combating the fear of the virus as much as the virus itself. With United, Delta and American Airlines suspending all travel to and from China, tourism officials in LA estimate a $920 million loss in Chinese tourism to the city this year.

All this is happening during the Chinese Lunar New Year, which is typically peak season for so many Chinese-styled businesses in the U.S.

In recent weeks, other cities in Southern California have canceled their Lunar New Year celebrations, including Alhambra, amid concerns of low turnout due to fears of the coronavirus.

However, the show went on in San Francisco's Chinatown, after city health officials deemed the risk of contracting the virus was low.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and N.Y. Senator Chuck Schumer kicked off Lunar New Year celebrations in Manhattan's Chinatown, with some noting a smaller turnout this year.

2020 Lunar New Year — New York City
Holding signs saying "Wuhan Stay Strong," people participate in the annual Lunar New Year Parade in Manhattan's Chinatown on February 9, 2020. Getty

— Mola Lenghi contributed to this report.

 

Americans remain under 2-week quarantine on military bases

Hundreds of Americans remain under a two-week quarantine on military bases in Omaha, Nebraska, San Antonio, Texas, and Fairfield, California. More than 500 U.S. citizens have been transported from Wuhan, China, back to the U.S. where they were greeted by virus response teams in hazmat suits.

Dr. Henry Walke, the lead for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at Travis Air Base in California, said only a handful of the evacuees displayed symptoms and are being monitored to make sure they don't have the virus.

— Mola Lenghi contributed to this report.  

 

Chinese ambassador to U.S. dismisses coronavirus theories as "crazy"

Chinese ambassador to U.S. dismisses coronavirus theories as "absolutely crazy"

Chinese Ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai provided an update on the crippling coronavirus and defended his government's response to the outbreak. He explained to "Face the Nation" moderator Margaret Brennan the challenges in containing the outbreak.

"People are still learning about the virus and how it affects people" he said. "We welcome the U.S. experts in our efforts ... to join the WHO. group that it's assembling."

Cui also addressed the charges that the virus came from China's biological warfare program. Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas tweeted late last month that Wuhan — the city where the deadly outbreak started — "has China's only biosafety level-four super laboratory that works with the world's most deadly pathogens to include, yes, coronavirus."

"I think it's true that a lot is still unknown," he explained. "It's very harmful, very dangerous to stir up suspicion, rumors and spread them among the people ... of course there are all kinds of speculation and rumors ... how can we believe all these crazy things."

Cotton has harshly criticized Beijing's handling of the outbreak for weeks. His allegation joined other theories — which have been largely debunked by experts — that the virus may be tied to the Wuhan National Biosafety Laboratory and could have come from China's biological warfare program.

Read more here.

By Peter Martinez
 

More people have died from coronavirus than SARS during the 2003 epidemic

China's Hubei province reported 91 new deaths from the novel coronavirus Sunday, bringing the global death toll to at least 903, according to the World Health Organization. More people have now died from coronavirus than from SARS during the 2003 epidemic which, killed 774 people according to WHO.

 

Hong Kong releases quarantined cruise hip

The 1,800 passengers and 1,800 crew members of the cruise ship Dream World were released from quarantine after Hong Kong authorities said tests of the crew found no infections.

The ship was isolated after eight mainland Chinese passengers were diagnosed with the disease last month.

Port official Leung Yiu-hon said some passengers with symptoms tested negative but there was no need to test all of them because they had no contact with the infected Chinese passengers.

Meanwhile, Hong Kong began enforcing a 14-day quarantine for arrivals from mainland China. The territory's chief executive, Carrie Lam, has refused demands by some hospital workers and others to seal the border completely.

— The Associated Press

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