BEIJING, Jan 25 (KUNA) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping stated Saturday that prevention and control of the new coronavirus outbreak is the prime task of his country in this delicate time.
He also expressed confidence in winning the battle against the deadly virus, according a statement aired by the Chinese TV CGTN after Xi's chairing of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee's meeting.
Xi, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, emphasized the urgency of task, urging authorities at all levels to fulfill their duties, guarantee the supply of relevant medicine and materials, and strengthen the protection of the medical staff fighting the virus.
The standing committee decided to set up a high-level working group to oversee the work.
The statement called for a reduction of large-scale public events during the Spring Festival holidays, which runs from January 24 to 30, across the country.
The committee also called for increased efforts to treat patients with the virus and speeding up research and development of the medicine and vaccine for treating the pneumonia.
The CPC leaders demanded accuracy, openness and transparency in the release of information about the outbreak, the statement said.
Earlier today, the Chinese National Health Committee announced the new strain of coronavirus has taken lives of 41 people throughout China.
It added that up to 1,297 pneumonia cases, caused by the coronavirus, were reported throughout the large Asian nation, adding that there were 237 critical cases.
Thirty-nine of the deaths were reported in the central district of Hubi alone.
Up to 1,965 suspected of being infected with the strain virus were reported, the committee said, adding that 38 patients recovered after receiving treatment at hospitals and were discharged.
Over the past 24 hours, 444 new cases were registered, in addition to 1,118 suspected cases, the committee said adding the virus spread to 30 Chinese districts. (pick up previous)