The World Health Organisation warned on Monday there was now a "very real" threat that the global outbreak of the new deadly coronavirus will become a pandemic, but stressed the virus could still be controlled.
"The threat of a pandemic has become very real," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters while stressing that "it would be the first pandemic in history that can be controlled... we are not at the mercy of the virus."
With the mercury decreasing over the last few days and fear of coronavirus looming, experts have said there is no established correlation between the variations in temperature and spread of COVID-19. The experts said COVID-19 spreads through human contact. Mass gathering has to be avoided and people need to take precautions like washing hands, they added. India has so far reported 43 coronavirus cases. According to reports, the number of cases of novel coronavirus worldwide has crossed 110,000 people in 100 countries and territories with more than 3,800 dead.
European Union leaders will hold an emergency videoconference on Tuesday aimed at coordinating their response to the coronavirus outbreak, EU Council President Charles Michel announced. The emergency meeting comes as Europe has struggled to draw up a unified response to the virus, with smaller countries accusing France and Germany of going it alone by banning exports of some medical supplies.
The announcements came as European governments adopt a range of measures aimed at containing the spread of the virus that first emerged in China last December. Italy -- with 366 dead -- is the worst-hit country in Europe and has imposed a sweeping lockdown on the most hard-hit northern regions. With more than 1,100 recorded cases and 19 deaths so far, the French government has banned all public gatherings of more than 1,000 people, and some 300,000 students are being kept at home in areas that have reported the highest numbers of cases
(With PTI inputs)