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China's Hubei province reports 96 new virus deaths


BEIJING (AFP) -- The death toll in China from the coronavirus epidemic rose past 2,400 on Sunday after 96 more people died in Hubei province, the hard-hit epicentre of the outbreak.

The vast majority of the deaths were in the provincial capital of Wuhan, where the virus first emerged in December, according to the daily update from the Hubei health commission.

The province also reported 630 new confirmed cases, bringing the total within China to around 77,000.

The coronavirus has spread to more than 25 countries and is causing mounting alarm due to new pockets of outbreak in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.

China has sowed confusion about its numbers by repeatedly changing its counting methods, which could further complicate efforts to track the contagion. (AFP)