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COVID-19: Germans evacuated from Wuhan, China set to leave quarantine

Coronavirus outbreak: China reports fall in cases as U.S., Canada, Hong Kong and Korea say they’ll evacuate passengers
WATCH ABOVE: Coronavirus outbreak: China reports fall in cases as U.S., Canada, Hong Kong and Korea say they'll evacuate passengers

More than 100 Germans evacuated from the hard-hit Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicentre of a new coronavirus outbreak, were set to end their prescribed 14-day quarantine period on Sunday.

They have been kept isolated at a military base in the southern town of Germersheim. None of them have tested positive for the disease, German news agency dpa reported.

READ MORE: COVID-19: Canadians quarantined at CFB Trenton ‘healthy’ says chief medical officer

The viral outbreak that emerged in China in December has infected more than 69,000 people globally, killing 1,665 people in mainland China and five others elsewhere. The World Health Organization has named the illness COVID-19.

Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, meanwhile, announced Sunday that Italy will send a plane to Japan to bring back the 35 Italians aboard the Diamond Princess, the cruise ship that has had 355 passengers and crew test positive for the new virus.

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WHO says it is ‘impossible to predict’ direction coronavirus will take
WHO says it is ‘impossible to predict’ direction coronavirus will take

Twenty-five of those Italians are crew members on the ship, including the cruise ship’s captain. Italy’s ministries of defence, foreign affairs and health as well as civil protection officials were working out the logistics. No date for the flight has been announced yet.

British officials announced Sunday that more than 3,100 people in the U.K. had been tested for the virus but there have been no new positive results beyond the nine who were successfully treated and discharged.

READ MORE: Japanese tourist tested positive for novel coronavirus after visiting Hawaii

European nations have reported 47 cases of the virus in nine countries. France on Saturday announced the first death of a virus patient in Europe and outside of Asia, an 80-year-old Chinese tourist in Paris.

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Chinese authorities have placed some 60 million people under a strict lockdown, built emergency hospitals and instituted tight controls across the country to fight the spread of the virus.

COVID-19 myth debunker
COVID-19 myth debunker

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has praised China’s intensive measures and urged other governments to step up their own anti-virus efforts, saying “it’s impossible to predict which direction this epidemic will take.”

“We must use the window of opportunity we have to intensify our preparedness,” he told foreign policy and security leaders at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday. “China has bought the world time. We don’t know how much time.”

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