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7 Mar, 2020 12:18

Leader of Italy's co-ruling Democratic Party tests positive for coronavirus

Leader of Italy's co-ruling Democratic Party tests positive for coronavirus

The leader of Italy’s co-ruling Democratic Party, Nicola Zingaretti, has admitted he has tested positive for coronavirus as Italy struggles to cope with the health care crisis sparked by the disease.

“The doctors have told me that I am positive for COVID-19,” the politician said in a video he published in Facebook, referring to the official name of the deadly disease that originated from China.

The man, who is also the president of the central Italian province of Lazio, where Rome is located, assured his followers that he “is fine but would have to stay home” for some time. He wished “courage” to everyone and said he would continue his work from home.

The politician also called on Italians not to panic and said he would like to “set a good example” by following the recommendations of the medics. He went on to say he would “fight” since fighting “is the right thing to do for the country at the moment.”

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Italy’s former prime minister and a fellow Democratic Party member, Matteo Renzi was one of the first to react to the news. He expressed his support to Zingaretti and “all those who are fighting the coronavirus” as well as thanked the medics for their hard work.

Italy reported the sharpest rise in the national coronavirus death toll. The authorities confirmed that 49 people died in just 24 hours bringing the total number of the deadly disease victims in Italy to 197. 

The total number of confirmed cases in Italy has meanwhile surpassed 4,600. The World Health Organization reported that some 100,000 people contracted the coronavirus worldwide as the global death toll almost reached 3,500.

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