New domestic cases in Beijing raise fears of new virus wave
The majority of China’s cases in recent months were overseas nationals tested as they returned home, with the domestic outbreak brought largely under control after the disease first emerged in the central city of Wuhan last year.
But the new cases have prompted Beijing officials to delay the return of students to primary schools, and suspend all sporting events and group dining.
City authorities on Friday also closed two markets visited by one of the known cases.
The chairman of the Xinfadi meat wholesale market told state-run Beijing News that the virus was detected on chopping boards used to handle imported salmon.
Major supermarket chains including Wumart and Carrefour removed all stocks of salmon overnight in the capital, but said supplies of other products would not be affected, Beijing Daily reported June 13.
AFP reporters saw dozens of police officers deployed at the two markets.
The novel coronavirus is believed to have jumped from an animal to humans at a Wuhan market that sold wildlife.
The first new case in Beijing after two months- who had no recent travel history outside the city- was reported on
On June 11, and authorities confirmed two more infections the next day.
The other five cases reported on June 13 were brought in from overseas.
Meanwhile, the coronavirus pandemic has killed 425,000 people since it emerged in China late last year, according to an AFP tally of official sources at 0130 GMT on June 13.
A total of 425,282 deaths have now been recorded from 7,632,517 cases.
Europe has registered 186,843 deaths from 2,363,538 cases, but the epidemic is progressing most rapidly in Latin America, where there have been a total of 76,343 deaths recorded from 1,569,938 cases.
The United States remains the country with the most recorded deaths at 114,643, ahead of Brazil which on June 12 became the second worst-hit nation with 41,828 deaths. Britain is next with 41,481 deaths, followed by Italy (34,223) and France (29,374).