Coronavirus should be treated as “public enemy number one” — posing a bigger threat than terrorism, the World Health Organization has warned.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus insisted Tuesday that the virus — now formally named COVID-19 — is “a very grave threat” well beyond China, where it originated and has killed at least 1,113 people.
The world needs to “wake up and consider this enemy virus as public enemy number one,” Tedros warned.
“A virus is more powerful in creating political, social and economic upheaval than any terrorist attack,” Tedros told reporters in Geneva.
“It’s the worst enemy you can imagine.”
So far, the virus has infected over 45,000 people worldwide — although 99 percent of the cases have occurred within China and only two fatalities have been reported outside the Chinese mainland.
But Tedros said it was “concerning” that person-to-person transmissions to people with no travel history to China had recently appeared in France and Britain.
His alert follows other warnings that 60 to 80 percent of the world’s population could be sickened by the virus, resulting in a massive global death toll.
With Post wires