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WHO: Latest Virus in Beijing is Closely Related to European Strain

2020/06/20

On 19 June local time, WHO Technical Lead for Health Emergencies Program Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove said at a press conference that the genetic sequences from Beijing had been uploaded and the virus is closely related to the European strain.

The Executive Director of the WHO Health Emergencies Program Dr. Michael Ryan noted that strains and viruses have moved around the world and the fact that a virus from Europe sparked China's latest outbreak did not mean the virus originated there. The disease was most likely imported from outside Beijing at some point. It is important to establish when that happened and how long the chain of transmission is. He said that WHO is pleased to see the intensity of the investigation in Beijing to find where the cluster began.

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