Chinese city shuts transport amid coronavirus crisis

Authorities in the Chinese city of Wuhan on Thursday shut down public transport in a bid to prevent outbreak of the fatal coronavirus that has so far claimed 17 lives.

In an emergency warning issued by the Transport Ministry, all long-distance public transportation including buses and ferries were suspended as part of the decision.

Additionally, all public transportation using the city as a transit will change their routes.

Residents of Wuhan, where the virus is originated, have also been advised not to leave the city.

The virus with pneumonia-like symptoms has infected a total of 571 people so far in China, authorities have confirmed.

It has spread to major cities including the capital Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen besides other smaller towns.

Japan, Thailand, South Korea and the U.S. have also confirmed cases of the virus while Australia is testing one person for it.

North Korea has temporarily closed its borders with China as a precaution following the outbreak, according to Yonhap news agency.

The World Health Organization at a meeting on Wednesday postponed a decision to declare the coronavirus a global health emergency saying physicians needed more information.

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