By Tony Winterburn • 29 January 2020 • 7:47
As the corona virus death toll rises past 130, World Leaders order rescue operation of its citizens
As the death toll from the coronavirus rose sharply overnight in Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak, an emergency evacuation of American and Japanese citizens began.
Chinese official figures now report that the death toll from the disease had risen sharply overnight to 132, with nearly 1,500 new cases in the country, with the total cases now 5,974, with Tibet reporting its first case last night.
A Nippon airways jet (pic) carrying 206 Japanese nationals arrived in Tokyo from Wuhan on Wednesday morning. Officials said four of the passengers – a woman and three men – had coughs and fevers and had been taken to a hospital in separate ambulances for treatment and further tests. A further 650 Japanese nationals are on standby to fly out later this evening.
Officials in the US, meanwhile, said a chartered plane had left Wuhan earlier this morning with about 200 US citizens on board, including staff from the local US consulate. “These travellers will be carefully screened and monitored to protect their health, as well as the health and safety of their fellow Americans,” US state department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said.
Flights taking Britons back home could begin as early as Thursday, according to a British teacher in Wuhan city who said UK citizens were being given details of forthcoming flights. France, South Korea, and many other countries are also scrambling to secure flights out of the province.
Australia has offered the use of Christmas Island, an Australian territory in the Indian Ocean that is home to a controversial detention centre for asylum seekers, as a quarantine base to house suspected cases.
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