March 12, 2020 / 11:39 AM / 18 days ago

UPDATE 1-Host Malaysia to weigh whether to continue with APEC 2020 events

(Adds more details, quotes)

KUALA LUMPUR, March 12 (Reuters) - Malaysia said on Thursday that its cabinet will consider whether to press ahead with Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) events it is scheduled to host this year, amid the coronavirus outbreak.

A minister in the prime minister’s department, Redzuan Yusof told reporters a travel ban on all arrivals from Denmark would come into effect on Saturday, and this could be extended to other high-risk countries after a briefing with the Prime Minister on Friday.

Malaysia has already imposed an entry ban on all Iranian, Italian and South Korean nationals.

Redzuan urged Malaysians to heed the health ministry’s advice to avoid mass gatherings.

“This includes international and sporting events,” he said, “We will bring this to cabinet to decide whether to continue with events that have been scheduled under APEC 2020.”

The ministry reported nine new coronavirus cases, bringing Malaysia’s total to 158.

Authorities have been tracking around 5,000 citizens believed to have been potentially exposed to the coronavirus at a religious event on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur. (Reporting by Joseph Sipalan; writing by Liz Lee; editing by John Stonestreet)

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