nearly 1,800 dead, “impossible to predict” development

Caution is advised. If official figures confirm a certain decline, the World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that the spread of the coronavirus remains “impossible to predict“. Le Figaro takes stock of the viral pneumonia epidemic this Monday, February 17.

  • 105 dead in one day

The total number of deaths due to the epidemic of coronavirus baptized Covid-19 amounts to 1775, including 1770 in mainland China, mostly in the province of Hubei, in the center of the country, according to official figures published on Monday . They confirm a slowdown in the daily number of new deaths (105 Monday against 142 Sunday and 143 Saturday).

The total number of contaminations reached 71,335, including 70,552 in mainland China. This corresponds to an increase of 2048 on a day, which represents an increase compared to the figure published on Sunday. However, the number of new cases recorded outside Hubei (the main region concerned) was only 115 on Monday, against nearly 450 a week earlier.

  • WHO experts in China

International experts dispatched to Beijing by WHO have started talking with their Chinese counterparts. “We look forward to this important and vital collaboration contributing to global knowledge of the # COVID19 epidemic.“WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Sunday evening on Twitter.

A senior Chinese official said his country was in control of the epidemic: “We can already see the effect of measures to control and prevent the epidemic in different parts of the country.Said Chinese Ministry of Health spokesman Mi Feng. On Monday, 1,200 new nurses and doctors from the People’s Liberation Army arrived at Wuhan Airport to fight the epidemic.

  • Even more controls

At the center of the crisis, Hubei province, where 56 million people have been cut off from the world since January 23, has further restricted the freedom of movement of its citizens far beyond its capital Wuhan.

Villages and residential cities are now subject to “strict closed management24 hours a day, which means residents are no longer expected to leave their homes until further notice. Purchases and distribution of food and medicine can be done “centralized“, Specifies a provincial directive published Sunday.

»See also – Coronavirus: new authorities report, China records more than 1,600 deaths

  • Thirty countries concerned

Outside mainland China, nearly 600 cases of contamination by the coronavirus epidemic have been confirmed in thirty countries around the world. The first death outside Asia – an 80-year-old Chinese tourist hospitalized in France – and the first case on the African continent – in Egypt – have been recorded in recent days. Taiwan also announced its first death on Sunday, a 61-year-old taxi driver.

Visiting Pakistan, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said he was confident that “the gigantic effort“Consented to by Chinaallow the progressive decline of the disease“. But the WHO chief warned that he was “impossible to predict which direction the epidemic will take“. “We ask all governments, all societies and all news organizations to work with us to raise the appropriate level of alarm without blowing the embers of hysteria“He said at the Munich Security Conference.

See also – China quarantines banknotes to control coronavirus epidemic

The main source of infection outside China remains the cruise liner Diamond princess, quarantined in Japan: 355 cases of contamination have been confirmed there, including 70 new cases announced on Sunday. The 3,711 people initially on board have not yet undergone all the examinations to establish their possible contamination.

Several countries – Canada, the United States, but also Hong Kong, nearly a thousand passengers between them – have decided to quickly evacuate their nationals, stranded in the boat in quarantine since February 3. The 300 Americans in quarantine were evacuated from the boat at dawn Monday. Among them, 14 tested positive for coronavirus. The first evacuation flight has already landed this Tuesday morning on an air base in California while the second is expected on another base in San Antonio, Texas.

Out of the 355 cases of the cruise ship, 61 other cases were identified in Japan, the most affected country after China and Singapore (75). Japanese Health Minister Katsunobu Kato warned on Sunday that Japan was entering a “new phaseOf this viral infection, the country observing from day to day additional cases among people who had not visited China and had not had contact with visitors from China.

Consequence this Monday: the reception of the public in the gardens of the Palace for the birthday of the new emperor Naruhito on February 23 has been canceled, announced the Imperial House. As early as Sunday the Japanese government had called on the population to avoid rallies “not essential“. The Japanese media also reported that amateur runners would not be admitted to the Tokyo Marathon, scheduled for March 1, which will therefore be reserved for professionals.

In Hong Kong, a territory that has barricaded itself to protect itself from the epidemic for ten days, consumers are robbing supermarkets to store food and cleaning products for fear of shortages, even if the authorities say that the chain of supply continues to operate normally.

Hong Kong police said on Monday that a truck driver was robbed in front of a supermarket in Mong Kok district by three individuals armed with knives who stole a large stock of toilet paper rolls, a product that has become difficult to find in shops. rays.

“See also – Coronavirus:” It is very likely that we will have new cases “in France, says Agnès Buzyn

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