France confirms first coronavirus death in Europe

In this Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020 photo, a worker wearing a protective suit checks the luggage of an evacuee from Wuhan, China, after their evacuation flight landed at an airport in Marseilles, France. (AP)

An 80-year-old Chinese tourist has died from the new coronavirus in France, the first death to be confirmed in Europe, French Health Minister Agnes Buzyn said on Saturday.

The victim is a native of Hubei province, the region at the center of the outbreak. He arrived in France on Jan. 16 and was hospitalized in isolation on Jan. 25. But his condition worsened rapidly, Buzyn said in a press statement. He died of pulmonary illness in a Paris hospital, marking the first fatality from the disease outside Asia.

The man's daughter had also been hospitalized with the COVID-19 disease caused by the virus, but is out of danger and should be discharged soon, Buzyn said.

France had recorded a total of 11 coronavirus infections as of Friday, out of a global total of 66,492 affectees. Three of the 11 patients have recovered and been released from hospital.

The epidemic has killed more than 1,500 people. Only three deaths have so far been recorded outside mainland China, in the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Japan.

The latest figures reported by each government's health authority as of Saturday are:

- Mainland China: 1,523 deaths among 66,492 cases, mostly in the central province of Hubei.
- Hong Kong: 56 cases, 1 death
- Macao: 10
- Japan: 262, including 218 from a cruise ship docked in Yokohama, 1 death
- Singapore: 67
- Thailand: 34
- South Korea: 28
- Malaysia: 21
- Taiwan: 18
- Vietnam: 16
- Germany: 16
- United States: 15. Separately, one U.S. citizen died in China
- Australia: 14
- France: 11
- United Kingdom: 9
- United Arab Emirates: 8
- Canada: 8
- Philippines: 3 cases, including 1 death
- India: 3
- Italy: 3
- Russia: 2
- Spain: 2
- Belgium: 1
- Nepal: 1
- Sri Lanka: 1
- Sweden: 1
- Cambodia: 1
- Finland: 1
- Egypt: 1

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