January 27, 2020 / 5:01 PM / 20 days ago

U.S. government urges Americans to reconsider travel to China because of coronavirus

(Reuters) - The U.S. State Department urged Americans on Monday to reconsider going to China because of the coronavirus, after warning against travel to the Hubei province of China, where the respiratory illness is believed to have originated, .

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Monday it had not recorded any new confirmed cases of the illness overnight since its last update of five, but that as many as 110 potential cases were under investigation.The State Department said Americans should reconsider any plans to travel to China during the outbreak.

In an advisory posted on Friday, the State Department said:

“Do not travel to Hubei province, China due to novel coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, China.

It added: “Chinese authorities have imposed strict travel restrictions in the area around Wuhan. Travelers should be aware that the Chinese government could prevent them from entering or exiting parts of Hubei province,” the advisory said.

The coronavirus, which causes respiratory symptoms similar to a cold or flu, has been linked to a seafood market in Wuhan, the largest city in central China, with a population of about 11 million. That market has since been shut down.

The outbreak has killed 81 and infected more than 2,800 in China.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday offered any help China needed to control the outbreak, which has also left tens of millions stranded during the Lunar New Year, the biggest Chinese holiday.

FILE PHOTO: A traveler wearing a mask arrives on a direct flight from China, after a spokesman from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said a traveler from China had been the first person in the United States to be diagnosed with the Wuhan coronavirus, at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Washington, U.S. January 23, 2020. REUTERS/David Ryder/File Photo

The CDC has said that of the investigated cases across 26 states, 32 people had tested negative, the CDC said.

There is no evidence so far that the coronavirus is transmitted through imported goods, Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, said in a briefing with reporters.

The CDC raised issued a separate travel alert last week recommending people avoid all nonessential travel to Wuhan.

Reporting by Manas Mishra and Saumya Sibi Joseph in Bengaluru and Dan Whitcomb in Culver City, California; Editing by Peter Cooney

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