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Cambodia confirms first case of Wuhan virus: Health minister

Cambodia confirms first case of Wuhan virus: Health minister

Wuhan residents are pitching in to the relief effort by driving sick fellow citizens to hospital. (Photo: AFP/Hector RETAMAL)

Phnom Penh, CAMBODIA: Cambodia has confirmed the first case of coronavirus in the country, Health Minister Mam Bunheng said on Monday (Jan 27). 

The patient is a Chinese national in the coastal city of Sihanoukville, he said. 

The new flu-like virus that was first reported in the Chinese city of Wuhan has killed 81 people, all in China, and infected more than 2,700 others. 

READ: In one Wuhan hospital, long lines, fear and frustration

Earlier on Monday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited the central city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, as the government sought to signal it was responding seriously to the crisis.

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

The virus' ability to spread appears to be "getting stronger" though it is "not as powerful as SARS", top Chinese health officials have said.

The virus has spread throughout China and across the world - with cases confirmed in around a dozen countries including as far away as the United States.

The US State Department said on Sunday it was arranging a flight from Wuhan to San Francisco for consulate staff and other Americans in the city.

France's government and the French carmaker PSA also said they planned to evacuate staff and families, who will be quarantined in a city in a neighbouring province.

Japan is coordinating with Beijing to swiftly evacuate its citizens, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said.

Hong Kong, which has had eight confirmed cases, banned entry to people who had visited Hubei in the past 14 days. The ban does not cover Hong Kong residents.

Macau, which has five confirmed cases, said on Monday it will deny entry to visitors from China's Hubei province or those who visited the province 14 days prior to arrival unless they can provide documentation showing they are not infected with the virus that broke out in the province.

MORE: Our coverage on the Wuhan virus and its developments

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Full coverage: https://cna.asia/wuhan-virus

Source: AGENCIES/aa

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