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WHO team to visit China next week to investigate origin of COVID-19

A team of the WHO (World Health Organisation) will visit China next week to investigate the origins of the COVID-19 and its spread to human beings.

The visit will take place more than six months after the WHO’s Country Office in China picked up a statement from the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission on cases of ‘viral pneumonia’. WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus spoke in January about an agreement with China for sending a team of international experts “as soon as possible” to work on increasing the understanding of the outbreak.

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COVID-19 has killed a total of 529,212 people across the world so far and cases and deaths are increasing by the day. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases has gone up to 11,198,211 so far.

Also read: Assam: Guwahati Detects 134 COVID-19 Cases On July 3, State Tally Reaches 9799

“What is needed now is a good investigation going back before December to find out where and how it jumped from animal to human. Was there any intermediate animal or not or it directly jumped from bat to humans which are also possible? Bats have been implicated in other viral diseases — Nipah for example. It is possible it came directly. It is also possible that there was an intermediate animal-like in the case of SARS. That thorough investigation still needs to be done,” Dr Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist, WHO said as quoted by the Hindustan Times.

Dr Swaminathan said that the Chinese government had reported an outbreak of “typical pneumonia cases” from Wuhan on December 31. Dr Swaminathan said that sequences show that the virus causing Covid-19 is very similar to bat viruses.

India recorded the highest-ever daily spike of 20,903 COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, pushing the total tally to 6,25,544 lakh. The death toll is now 18213, as per data released by the Union Health Ministry. Active cases in India stand at 227439 while 379892 have been cured or discharged so far.

Among the states, Maharashtra is the first state to cross 6 thousand deaths. It has recorded 186626 corona cases with 101172 cured, 8187 deaths, and 77276 active cases. The western state is followed by Delhi and Tamil Nadu. Delhi has corona 92175 cases with 63007 cured, 2864 deaths, and 26304 active cases. Tamil Nadu has 98392 positive cases with 26021 cured, 1321 deaths 41050 active cases. Gujarat with 33913 COVID-19 cases, so far, has 24593 have been cured, 1886 deaths, and 7434 active cases.

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