The epidemic “is a devil and we cannot allow the devil to hide,” Xi told WHO head Tedros Ghebreyesus during their meeting in Beijing. Ghebreyesus praised China for its swift response in identifying the genome sequence and putting measures in place to curb the epidemic. The Chinese people are engaged in a “serious struggle,” Xi Jinping stressed, while alarming reports about the outbreak have been coming in from different parts of the world.

In just 24 hours, the number of infected skyrocketed from 2,835 to more than 4,500, according to China’s national health commission. Since the epidemic started, the new virus has already claimed 106 lives.

Of particular concern are reports from Japan and Germany, where the first cases of coronavirus not directly linked to recent travels to China were confirmed.

The infected Japanese person is a bus driver, who still apparently had contact with Chinese tourists from Wuhan this month, driving two groups from the city in that time. The German patient, meanwhile, was infected by a Chinese colleague during a training event, local health officials reported.

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