Chinese President Xi Jinping (centre)
Chinese President Xi Jinping (centre) wearing a protective face mask waves as he inspects the novel coronavirus pneumonia prevention and control work at a neighbourhoods in Beijing. Image Credit: Pang Xinglei/Xinhua via AP


  • Cases surpass 113,000 worldwide; deaths exceed 3,900
  • U.S. confirmed cases top 600; at least 24 deaths
  • China reports 19 new cases, 17 deaths
  • ‘If we sanitize, it will be fine’: cruise fans ignore U.S. alert
  • Trump’s coronavirus claims often contradicted by his own experts
  • Top virus doctor says high blood pressure is big death risk

Chinese President Xi Jinping visited the coronavirus epicenter of Wuhan for the first time since the disease emerged, state media said, a trip intended to project confidence that his government has managed to stem its spread domestically.

Xi arrived Tuesday morning in the capital of hard-hit Hubei province, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

Wuhan, where the disease first emerged in December, has been quarantined since Jan. 23, in what some people see as a heavy-handed approach following earlier failures to act quickly enough to stem the spread.

China announced only 19 new cases, the lowest since Jan. 18 according to official figures, while South Korea added 131 new infections, extending a declining trend.

US cases

President Donald Trump promised “very dramatic” actions to support the U.S. economy as the World Health Organization said the threat of a pandemic is “very real.”

US health authorities have tested 4,384 people for the new coronavirus, nearly two weeks after the disease was found to be spreading across America, according to the Atlantic.

More than 500 positive cases have been reported in the US, experts say the number is too small to reflect the full extent of the disease’s spread as not enough Americans have been tested, the Atlantic wrote.

“The lack of testing means that it is almost impossible to know how many Americans are infected with the coronavirus and suffering from Covid-19, the disease it causes,” the Atlantic wrote.

Trump said he will seek a payroll tax cut and “substantial relief” for industries that have been hit by the coronavirus. The economic package will leave out for now any aid for the travel industry, according to people familiar with the matter, raising the risk that the plan won’t go far enough to satisfy investors.

Meanwhile, infections climbed across Europe and Italy attempted a nationwide lockdown, but the situation in Asia showed improvements.