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China says faces greater risk of local virus infection caused by imported cases over winter

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China is facing an increased risk of local transmission of the new coronavirus in the winter due to imported cases from abroad, said a senior official at the country’s health authority.

In winter, there might be some sporadic cases in China, Li Bin, vice minister of the National Health Commission, said at a press conference.

China’s epidemic prevention and control work cannot be relaxed for a single moment, Li warned.

Mainland China reported 15 new COVID-19 cases for Nov. 11, down from 17 cases a day earlier, the country’s national health authority said on Thursday.

The National Health Commission said in a statement that one of the new cases was a local infection in Tianjin. The remaining 14 cases were imported infections that originated from overseas, the commission said.

The total number of new asymptomatic cases fell to six from 15 reported a day earlier. China does not count symptomless patients as confirmed COVID-19 cases.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in mainland China to date now stands at 86,299, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4,634.

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