The new coronavirus outbreak has reached a “decisive point”, the head of the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Thursday, urging countries to redouble efforts to contain its spread effectively.

“This virus has pandemic potential,” WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a news briefing. “This is not a time for fear. This is a time for taking action to prevent infection and save lives now.”

WHO officials said they were working closely with organisers of the Tokyo Olympic Games this year and did not believe any decision would be taken soon on whether to hold the event starting in July as planned.


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