GENEVA (AFP) – The World Health Organisation (WHO) warned on Thursday (March 5) that too many countries were not taking all the steps needed to fight the spread of the deadly new coronavirus.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters in Geneva he was concerned that a “long list” of countries were not showing “the level of political commitment” needed to “match the level of the threat we all face”.
“This is not a drill,” he said.
More than 95,000 people have been infected and over 3,200 have died worldwide from the virus, which by Thursday had reached more than 80 countries and territories.
Most deaths and infections are in China, where the virus first emerged late last year, prompting the country to quarantine entire cities, temporarily shut factories and close schools indefinitely.
But it has quickly spread beyond China’s borders.
“This epidemic is a threat for every country, rich and poor,” Dr Tedros said, warning that “even the high-income countries should expect surprises”.
He lamented that a number of countries did not appear to be taking the