New Delhi: Amid worldwide concerns over the rapid spread of Coronavirus, Hong Kong has declared the highest level of emergency on Saturday. The Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon, scheduled for February 9, will be cancelled, with about 70,000 participants affected, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said. Schools will be shut until February 17.

Coronavirus has claimed 41 people in China. The number of people infected with the virus has gone up to 1, 300, a report said on Saturday. The death toll from the disease was 25 on Friday. All the new deaths have been reported from Wuhan, the place where the cases of the people infected with the virus were first reported.

A report by news agency AFP also said that the disease has spread to 30 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities. Meanwhile, authorities in China are taking measures to contain the spread of the disease.

A host of measures that have been announced to prevent the spread of the virus, include the cancellation of Lunar New Year celebrations.

This new virus has become a cause of global concern due to its similarity to SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), which claimed the lives of hundreds of people across mainland China and Hong Kong in 2002-2003.