February 6, 2020 / 9:07 AM / 21 days ago

Sister of Malaysian man at Singapore business meeting tests positive for coronavirus

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - The sister of a 41-year-old Malaysian man who attended a meeting in Singapore last month has tested positive for the new coronavirus, the first known person-to-person transmission in the country, authorities in Malaysia said on Thursday said.

The 40-year-old Malaysian woman had direct contact with the man, who had returned to his hometown for the Chinese New Year holidays on Jan. 23, Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad said in a statement.

The woman, who does not have a travel history to China, started showing symptoms on Feb. 1, the minister said. Others in the man’s family have tested negative for the coronavirus.

“We are calling this the first Malaysian-transmitted local case,” Dzulkefly said.

The man had attended a company meeting at the Grand Hyatt in Singapore in mid-January. At least three people, including the Malaysian man, who attended the meeting have contracted the virus, sparking a World Health Organization investigation of the case.

Malaysian health authorities have said people from China including, one from the city of Wuhan, where the virus emerged in December, attended the Singapore meeting.

Minister Dzulkefly also confirmed another coronavirus case of a tourist from Wuhan, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 14.

Ten of them are Chinese nationals, while the rest are Malaysians - including two who were evacuated from Wuhan this week.

Reporting by Liz Lee; Editing by Alex Richardson

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