The Philippines reported the first death on Sunday outside of China from a new coronavirus, deepening global fears about an epidemic that has claimed more
than 300 lives.
The first foreign fatality came as an increasing number of governments around the world closed their borders to people from China in a bid to stop it spreading.
China has locked down Wuhan and surrounding cities in a bid to contain the virus, but it has continued to spread, prompting a hard-hit eastern city far from the epicentre to impose similar draconian measures on Sunday.
The World Health Organization (WHO) Thursday declared the situation a global health emergency, and nations have taken extraordinary measures to build virtual fortresses against the disease.
The United States, Australia, New Zealand and Israel banned foreign nationals from visiting if they had been in China recently, and warned their own citizens from travelling there.
Mongolia, Russia and Nepal closed their land borders, while Papua New Guinea went as far as to ban anyone arriving from ports or airports across Asia.
The containment measures may have slowed the spread of the virus, but not stopped it.
The person who died in the Philippines was a 44-year-old Chinese man from Wuhan, the WHO said. The news of the man’s death was released shortly after Manila announced it would immediately halt the arrivals of any foreign travellers from China. Britain, Russia and Sweden also this weekend confirmed their first infections.
BEIJING AFP, 2 Feb, 2020