a day ago this information would have been “fake news”; now it is
of ‘burning bodies in secret’
health officials, back from a visit to Beijing, expressed great
concern that a dangerous new virus was spreading between people
outside of China, even as the number of illnesses continue to grow
dramatically inside that Asian nation.
new virus has now infected more people in China than were sickened
during the 2002-2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)
outbreak. On Wednesday, the number of cases jumped to 5974,
surpassing the 5327 people diagnosed with SARS.
death toll, which stood at 132 on Wednesday, is lower than the 348
people who died in China from SARS.
have been raised about the official death toll, however, with claims
Chinese authorities have been cremating bodies in secret.
news outlet Initium interviewed people working at local cremation
centres in Wuhan, who said bodies were being sent directly from
hospitals without being properly identified and added to the official
there are reasons to remain sceptical about what China has been
sharing with the world because while they have been more transparent
about certain things related to the virus, they continue to be
sketchy and unreliable in other aspects,” said DW News East Asia
correspondent William Yang.
say there are still many questions to be answered about the new
virus, including just how easily it spreads and how severe it is.
World Health Organisation’s emergencies chief told reporters that
China was taking “extraordinary measures in the face of an
extraordinary challenge” posed by the outbreak.
Michael Ryan spoke at a news conference after returning from a trip
to Beijing to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping and other senior
said the epidemic remained centred in the city of Wuhan and in Hubei
province, but “information is being updated and is changing by