RealNews

Web Site Hoax on Killer Virus Triggers Hong Kong Panic

A hoax report about the killer virus sweeping Hong Kong sparked panic food buying and hit financial markets on Tuesday, and the government said it was placing more than 200 people into isolation camps. Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous nation, reported its first three suspected cases. One official said one of the patients had died but this could not be confirmed. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) has now affected almost 1,900 people in at least a dozen countries, and 63 are known to have died. Singapore, which ranks third worldwide in the number of its SARS cases after Hong Kong and China, said three more people had been struck as nurses screening arriving air passengers found seven sick enough to send to hospital. In Hong Kong, where 685 people have been infected and 16 have died from the virus, the Web site hoax forced authorities to deny it would isolate the entire territory. Full Story

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