Canada’s foreign affairs minister says COVID-19 test came back negative

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UPDATE as of March 20, 7:24 a.m.: Champagne tweeted Friday that his test for the new novel coronavirus came back negative and that he will continue to “help Canadians abroad” during the pandemic.

Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne has been tested for COVID-19 after experiencing flu-like symptoms.

The minister tweeted Thursday afternoon, saying he had experienced symptoms within 14 days of returning from an international trip.

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He said he is currently awaiting results and self-isolating.

“I will continue to work around the clock to support Canadians facing difficulties abroad and to co-ordinate the international response to this crisis,” he added.

“We must remember to practice social distancing & take all necessary precautions to protect each other in the face of this virus.”

The news comes as Canada tightens its borders to international travel, which has been linked to many cases of COVID-19 in the country.

Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, the wife of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, is among Canadians who have tested positive for the virus following an international trip to London, U.K.

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The prime minister himself remains in self-isolation following his wife’s diagnosis but told reporters he does not have any symptoms.

As of Thursday afternoon, there are more than 700 cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Canada and nine deaths. The global number of cases surpassed 200,000 on Wednesday.


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