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(LEAD) S. Korea reports 1st confirmed China coronavirus case, raises alert level

All Headlines 14:08 January 20, 2020

(ATTN: CHANGES headline; ADDS more info from 3rd para)

SEOUL, Jan. 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea on Monday reported the first confirmed case of the China coronavirus amid concerns that a pneumonia-like illness is set to spread across China and Asia.

According to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), a Chinese woman suffered a fever, respiratory problems and other symptoms after arriving at Incheon International Airport and tested positive for the virus.

The 35-year-old resident arrived from the Chinese central city of Wuhan in Hubei province -- where the virus appears to have originated -- on Sunday before traveling to Japan in tune with the Lunar New Year holiday this week.

The patient has since been quarantined at a local hospital for treatment, the country's public health and safety agency said.

The agency said it has elevated an alert level by one notch and ordered local governments to strengthen monitoring.

The Beijing government has reported nearly 200 infected patients, with the death toll at three. New cases of people coming down with pneumonia-like symptoms have been reported in Japan and Thailand.

Beijing has said the new strain of the coronavirus is not contagious between people, but the World Health Organization (WHO) is not ruling out person-to-person transmission under certain conditions, the center said.

(LEAD) S. Korea reports 1st confirmed China coronavirus case, raises alert level - 1

sam@yna.co.kr
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