Scores of people infected with coronavirus at prayers in Malaysian mosque

Bangkok, Mar 15 (efe-epa).- The Malaysian government announced on Sunday that at least 190 people contracted coronavirus during prayers at a mosque in Kuala Lumpur.

The infections from the mass event at Sri Petaling mosque in the capital city has brought the total number of cases in the country to 428.

It was the largest rise in Covid-19 patients in Malaysia, which reported on Saturday 42 cases connected to the religious event where some 16,000 people gathered, according to a statement issued by the ministry of health.

Health authorities warned that citizens from Singapore, which has 212 cases, and Indonesia, which has 117 infections and 5 deaths, had also attended the event.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo said Sunday he will undergo a series of medical tests after transport minister Budi Karya Sumadi announced he had contracted the virus and urged Indonesians to work and pray from home.

Thailand’s health minister was due to propose on Monday the closure of bars and restaurants as the total infections reached 114 with one death.

Similarly, authorities in the Philippines announced a one-month lockdown on movements in and out of Manila, after the country’s number of infections totalled 140 and 11 deaths.

The mosque infections in Malaysia came after hundreds of people contracted the deadly virus at a religious event in South Korea last month.

There have been more than 8,000 infections and 70 deaths in South Korea, one of the worst-affected nations in the world.

An event at the Shincheonji Church of Jesus was one of the main sources of infection in the country.

South Korea has seen a recent decline in fresh cases and on Sunday reported 76 new infections, a decrease for the fourth consecutive day and the lowest daily rise in three weeks.

The new coronavirus originated in Wuhan, the capital city of the central Chinese province of Hubei, in December, and has since spread around the world.

It was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, with more than 132,000 global cases in 123 countries and territories and deaths exceeding 5,000.

Most of the fatalities have been elderly people or those who had underlying medical conditions. EFE-EPA


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