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Saudi Press Agency

Eritrea becomes 39th African country to confirm Covid-19 case

Saudi Press Agency

Sunday 1441/7/27 - 2020/03/22

Cape Town, March 22, 2020, SPA -- A 39-year-old man has become the first confirmed case of Covid-19 in Eritrea, bringing the number of African nations to have detected cases of the disease to 39, dpa reported.

The Eritrean, who is a permanent resident of Norway, returned to the African country's capital Asmara on March 21 on a Fly Dubai flight, information minister Yemane Gebremeskel said in a statement late on Saturday.

The patient exhibited symptoms of the novel coronavirus at the screening process in the airport and was promptly quarantined and tested, Gebremeskel said.

Africa had been largely spared from the pandemic for weeks, but has now recorded more than 700 cases and at least 17 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.

There are concerns that weak national health systems in Africa will be quickly overwhelmed by the pandemic, which has so far killed over 11,000 people globally.

13:03 LOCAL TIME 10:03 GMT

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