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First death due to corona virus in Europe

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The 2019-nCoV corona virus has claimed a first victim in Europe. In France, an eighty-year-old Chinese tourist succumbed to the effects of the COVID-19 disease on Friday, French health minister Agnès Buzyn reported Saturday.

The tourist is said to be from the Chinese province of Hubei, the epicenter of the virus outbreak, and arrived in the French capital Paris in mid-January. Barely ten days later, he was placed in quarantine in a hospital, where a lung infection became fatal to him, Buzyn said.

It is the fourth death outside of China, where more than fifteen hundred people died after being infected. The Philippines, Hong Kong and Japan also reported a death earlier. Most people die in the Hubei and the million-dollar city of Wuhan.

A further 67,000 people are currently infected with the virus. Ten thousand of them are said to be in critical condition in Chinese hospitals, while thousands of new infections have been observed in the last days. In Europe, there are almost fifty infections, of which eleven in France.

The Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) estimates that about 2 percent of the people who die of the virus die. Together with the municipal health service (GGD), RIVM is currently monitoring the health of around twenty Dutch people who have returned from Wuhan and have been placed in quarantine.

On Friday it was announced that someone in Egypt had fallen ill, so that the virus outbreak also affected the African continent.

The WHO health organization announced in the weekly update on Wednesday that the outbreak “could still go in any direction”. The United Nations (UN) called the virus “a major threat to humanity” and, like the WHO, sent a crisis management team to China to help the Asian country fight corona virus.

On Saturday, the Chinese central bank decided that Chinese paper money should be quarantined. The banknotes could help spread the corona virus and are therefore temporarily withdrawn from circulation. Paper money that was in circulation in Hubei must be disinfected separately.

The Chinese Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Qin Gang states on Saturday that the problems surrounding the corona virus will be resolved quickly. “The economy will recover quickly,” said Qin.

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