WORLD Two COVID-19 cases at World Health Organization HQ


Two COVID-19 cases at World Health Organization HQ


19:52, March 17, 2020


The headquarters of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland is seen in this Jan 22, 2020 file photo. (Photo: Xinhua)

Two cases of COVID-19 have been registered at the World Health Organization headquarters, a spokesman said Tuesday.

The WHO, based in the Swiss city of Geneva, is coordinating the international response to the new coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 180,000 people and killed more than 7,000 across 145 countries.

"We do have two staff confirmed with symptoms of COVID-19," spokesman Christian Lindmeier told reporters at a virtual press conference.

"This was last week, Friday and Thursday. They both have gone home. They have self-isolated. They showed symptoms.

"Colleagues in the office have been checked and we're waiting for further information on those. Everything so far seems OK with them.

He said all but essential staff were working remotely.

The WHO has started doing only virtual press conferences to brief on developments with the pandemics, with journalists barred from attending in person.

Infections in Switzerland jumped on Sunday by nearly 1,000 cases in 24 hours to 2,200 and 14 deaths were recorded from the virus across the wealthy Alpine country.

And the Swiss government imposed emergency measures on Monday in a bid to stem the spread of the virus in the country, banning all gatherings, tightening borders and deploying the military.

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