The death toll from the new coronavirus outbreak in China has reached 17. The confirmed infection cases have also sharply risen to more than 550 on Wednesday. The cases of the deadly pneumonia were reported from the US, Hong Kong, Macao, and Mexico.
Wuhan, a Chinese city of nearly nine million people, is to temporarily shut public transport as it tries to halt the outbreak of the virus.
Those living in the city have been advised not to leave, in a week when millions of Chinese are traveling for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday. All the fatalities so far have been in Hubei, the province around Wuhan.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization's emergency committee has announced it will not yet declare a "global emergency" over the new virus. The panel of 16 experts who met in Geneva was divided on whether or not to declare the virus outbreak a public health emergency.
They are still considering more evidence before any decision as it is a very serious decision for china and the whole world. Looking at the number of infections growing rapidly, China has put in place all the contingency measures.
The local government of Wuhan has announced that all public transportation in the city will be temporarily closed starting at 10 am local time on Thursday.
All flights and trains scheduled to depart from Wuhan also will be temporarily canceled to reduce the risk of spreading the new virus. The local authority advised residents not to leave Wuhan unless they have a "special reason". (AIR NEWS)