China's new outbreak wanes as US calls for answers on virus

China's new outbreak wanes as US calls for answers on virus


BEIJING (AP) — A new coronavirus outbreak in Beijing saw a decline in daily cases Thursday while the United States increased pressure on China's leaders to reveal what they know about the pandemic.

The outbreak first detected at a wholesale market in the capital last week has infected at least 158 people in China's biggest resurgence since the initial outbreak was brought under control in March. The city reported 21 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, down from 31 on Wednesday. City officials said close contacts of market workers, visitors and other connections were being traced to locate all possible cases as quickly as possible, with testing and prevention measures being taken.

At a meeting in Hawaii with a top Chinese diplomat, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged China to reveal all it knows about the pandemic.

Pompeo “stressed the need for full transparency and information sharing to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and prevent future outbreaks,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement about his meeting with the Communist Party’s top diplomat, Yang Jiechi.

Pompeo has joined President Donald Trump in criticizing China’s response to the outbreak, including giving credence to a theory that the virus may have emerged from a Chinese laboratory in Wuhan.

The World Health Organization last month bowed to calls from most of its member states to investigate how it managed the response to the virus, but the evaluation would stop short of looking into the origins of the virus. China maintains that controlling the virus's spread should be given priority.

China is also being called on to relieve the virus' financial consequences in Africa.

South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed Chinese leader Xi Jinping during an online China-Africa...

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