(Reuters) - A coronavirus outbreak that began in Wuhan, the capital of China’s central province of Hubei, has spread to more than 9,320 people globally, surpassing the total from the 2002-2003 SARS epidemic. The new virus has killed 212 people.
Here is what we know:
- There are 98 confirmed cases of infection outside mainland China in at least 18 countries including Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Australia, the United States and France.
- No deaths have been reported outside China.
- The World Health Organization declared the outbreak a public health emergency of international concern on Thursday.
- The United States reported its first case of person-to-person transmission. Germany, Vietnam and Japan have also recorded similar transmissions, which suggest greater potential for the virus to spread further.
- Several Chinese cities have levied strict travel curbs.
- Global airlines have suspended or scaled back direct flights to China’s major cities.
- Countries including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and the United States are working to evacuate citizens from Wuhan or have already started.
- Nearly 200 evacuated Americans arrived at a U.S. military base in California to be isolated for at least 72 hours.
- Three Japanese evacuated on a government-chartered flight proved to be infected, including two who had not shown symptoms.
- The Chinese Football Association said it would postpone domestic games in 2020.
- The World Athletics Indoor Championships scheduled in the Chinese city of Nanjing in March have been postponed until 2021.
- Alphabet Inc’s Google and Sweden’s IKEA said they were temporarily shutting all offices and stores in China over the outbreak.
- Some experts believe the virus is not as dangerous as the 2002-03 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) that killed nearly 800 people, or the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), which has killed more than 700 people since 2012.
Compiled by Stephen Coates; Editing by Nick Macfie, Lisa Shumaker and Bill Berkrot