Beijing, China | AFP | Wednesday 4/1/2020
China on Wednesday said it has more than 1,300 asymptomatic coronavirus cases, the first time it has released such data following public concern over people who have tested positive but are not showing symptoms.
Health officials also reported the first imported case from abroad in Wuhan -- the epicentre where the virus first emerged late last year -- heightening fears of infections being brought into China from other countries.
Of 36 new cases reported Wednesday, 35 were imported from abroad.
The National Health Commission (NHC) said 1,367 asymptomatic patients were under medical observation, with 130 new cases newly added in the last day.
The NHC announced Tuesday that it would respond "to public concerns" by starting to publish daily data on asymptomatic cases, which it said were infectious.
There were mass online calls for the government to reveal the number of asymptomatic cases after authorities revealed over the weekend that an infected woman in Henan province had been in close contact with three asymptomatic cases.
However, asymptomatic cases are not being added to the official tally unless they later show clinical symptoms.
Historical data on those infected without showing symptoms has not been published.
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