By Handan Kazanci
ISTANBUL (AA) - Japan will send a charter plane to Chinese city of Wuhan affected by the deadly coronavirus to evacuate its citizens, local media reported on Tuesday.
The evacuation for Japanese nationals will be carried out on Tuesday night, Japan’s Kyodo News agency reported citing Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi.
“The plane will deliver masks and protective suits to Wuhan before carrying back some 200 people to Tokyo on Wednesday morning,” Toshimitsu said.
Flights will follow to retrieve the rest of roughly 650 people who asked to be evacuated, the agency added.
The death toll in China from the novel coronavirus outbreak has climbed to 106, Chinese news agency Xinhua reported Tuesday.
More than 4,500 confirmed cases coronavirus have been reported in 30 provincial-level regions of China by the end of Monday, Xinhua said, citing the National Health Commission.
The virus, which originated in Wuhan city, has spread across 30 provinces in the country.
Tens of cases have been reported in Japan, North Korea, South Korea, Thailand, the U.S., Singapore, France, Malaysia, Australia, and Vietnam.
Chinese authorities on Sunday announced plans to extend the Lunar New Year holiday, which was originally set to end on Jan. 30, in a bid to reduce mass gatherings and to prevent further spread of the disease.
Travelers from China are being screened for the virus at airports worldwide, and many airlines have suspended flights to Wuhan.
The World Health Organization (WHO) held a meeting Thursday where it postponed a decision on declaring the outbreak of a health emergency, saying it needed more information about the virus.