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26.02.2020 Europe

Algeria confirms second case of coronavirus in Africa

Photo: Jane Barlow/Pool/AFP
LISTEN FEB 26, 2020
Photo: Jane Barlow/Pool/AFP

Algeria's government has confirmed one case of the coronavirus in the country amongst two suspected cases of Italian citizens, according to the health ministry. It marks the second confirmed cases of the virus on the African continent.

“The surveillance and alert system put in place at a national level has enabled us to detect two suspected cases,” Algeria's health ministry said in a communique, according to the APS news agency.

The suspected cases were two Italian nationals aged 55 and 61 years old.

Algeria's health ministry has taken the risk of the coronavirus spreading into account and "reinforced the prevention system around the confirmed case" as well as strengthened surveillance and monitoring systems at entry points to the country, APS reported.

The World Health Organisation said this latest confirmed case marks the second on the African continent since a confirmed COVID-19 infection in Egypt earlier this month.

WHO had identified Algeria as a top priority for coronavirus preparedness measures due to the country's direct links and high volume of travel to China.

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