Turkey, World

Turkish Rep. of N. Cyprus coronavirus cases rises to 20

Health authorities confirms 13 more cases of novel coronavirus

Muhammet Ikbal Arslan   | 18.03.2020
Turkish Rep. of N. Cyprus coronavirus cases rises to 20

LEFKOSA, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus

The government here confirmed 13 new coronavirus cases late Tuesday, bringing the total to 20, according to the health officials.

Health Minister Ali Pilli announced 39 people who were in close contact with a German tourist who is the first case in the country, were tested and 13 of them were diagnosed with the virus known as COVID-19.

Authorities previously announced five tourists and two Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) nationals tested positive for the virus.

In Southern Cyprus, Greek Cypriot health ministry announced three more cases, raising the tally there to five.

The TRNC had already announced schools would be closed until March 15 as a measure to stem the spread of the disease.

The news followed Monday's announcement that two cases of the virus were detected in Greek Cyprus, the first to be confirmed on the divided island.

After emerging in Wuhan, China last December, the virus has spread to at least 141 countries and territories.

The global death toll nears 8,000 with 200,000 confirmed cases, according to the World Health Organization that declared the outbreak a global pandemic.

*Writing by Burak Dag in Ankara

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