The coronavirus outbreak has now killed a second person outside mainland China. Hong Kong reported its first coronavirus death Tuesday. Authorities say the patient who died was a 39-year-old man who had traveled to Wuhan, the mainland city that has been the epicenter of the outbreak, before being hospitalized. The announcement came as hospitals cut services because medical workers were striking for a second day to demand the border with mainland China be shut completely, the AP reports. All but two of Hong Kong's land and sea crossings with the mainland were closed at midnight after more than 2,000 hospital workers went on strike Monday. As many as 9,000 medical workers could join the bigger walkout Tuesday to demand closure of the border.
The mainland's latest figures of 425 deaths and 20,438 confirmed infections of the new coronavirus were up from 361 deaths and 17,205 cases the previous day. Outside mainland China, at least 180 cases have been confirmed, including a death in the Philippines. Late Monday, China's President Xi Jinping presided over a special meeting of the top Communist Party body for the second time since the crisis started, saying "we have launched a people's war of prevention of the epidemic." Xi threatened punishments for those who neglect their duties, state broadcaster CCTV reported. Other countries are continuing evacuations and restricting the entry of Chinese travelers or people who have recently been to the country.
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