Rebound of the virus in Beijing: one hundred confirmed cases
One hundred new cases of Covid-19 have been identified in Beijing since the disease resurfaced in the Chinese city, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced Monday. While several European countries reopened their borders on Monday, the WHO warned of a "resurgence" of the coronavirus at the start of the pandemic.
"Even countries that have demonstrated the ability to suppress Covid-19 transmission must remain vigilant about the possibility of a resurgence" of the virus, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned during a virtual press conference.
"Last week, China reported a new outbreak in Beijing, after more than 50 days with no case in that city. More than 100 cases have been confirmed. The origin and extent of the epidemic are under investigation," he added.
WHO chief official Maria Van Kerkhove said: "I understand that so far there have been no deaths associated" with this new outbreak.
The new coronavirus seemed to be almost eradicated in China, where it appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, in the center of the country. Until an outbreak was detected in the capital last week.
The rebound in Beijing, where the new cases are linked to a giant Xinfadi market in the south of the city, has led to further confinements of residential areas and further evaluations. Sports and cultural sites have also been closed.
"After more than 50 days without significant local transmission, this outbreak is worrisome. It should be investigated and monitored, and that is exactly what the Chinese authorities are doing," said director of the emergency health service, Michael Ryan, along to the head of the UN specialized agency. She explained that the WHO has several epidemiologists who work permanently in the organization's Chinese office who work daily with the Chinese health authorities.
"We have offered them additional assistance and support, and we may be complementing our national office team with more experts in the coming days as the investigation progresses." , specified Mr. Ryan.
The senior official explained that when a set of measures is taken quickly, homes are often contained. "What we like to see is an immediate response and a complete set of measures," he said.
"However, Beijing is a great city and a very dynamic and connected city, so there is always a concern. And I think you can see this level of concern in the response from the Chinese authorities," he said before concluding: " We are following this very closely."
The new coronavirus pandemic has killed some 433,500 people worldwide and more than 7.9 million cases of infection have been officially diagnosed.
While "it took over two months for the first 100,000 cases to be reported, in the past two weeks, more than 100,000 new cases have been reported almost every day," said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
He noted that "almost 75% of recent cases come from ten countries, mainly in the Americas and South Asia," but said that "there were also an increasing number of cases in Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia and the Middle East."