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Coronavirus cases in Italy exceed 100 when cities close

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ROME: The number of coronavirus cases in Italy has increased to more than 100, said the president of the Lombardy region on Sunday, while northern cities struggle to contain the rising infections. “More than 100 cases” have been reported nationwide, Attilio Fontana told SkyTG24 television, with 89 of them in Lombardy, centered around the small town of Codogno, about 70 kilometers (43 miles) southeast of Milan .

Responding to a growing number of new cases, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced on Saturday that 11 cities in northern Italy would be quarantined, affecting some 50,000 people.

Two people have already died from the so-called COVID-19 epidemic in Italy, which was the first country to ban direct flights to and from China in January.

The first to get the virus were two Chinese tourists who were quarantined in Rome and remain there. Another man, who was also held in the same hospital in Rome, recovered and was released, authorities said.

The number of infected people also includes people living in four other regions of Italy.

The authorities have warned that the number of cases, which were 79 on Saturday, may continue to increase.

However, Conte has urged the Italians not to “give in to feelings of panic.”

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