Xinhua world news summary at 1530 GMT, Feb. 10

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GENEVA -- World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said late Sunday that the WHO-led team of international experts had left for China amid the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak.

Tedros said on Twitter that he had "just been at the airport seeing off members of an advance team for the WHO-led 2019-nCoV international expert mission to China, led by Dr. Bruce Aylward," who is a Canadian epidemiologist and emergencies expert and also a "veteran of past public health emergencies." (WHO-China-Coronavirus)

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WASHINGTON -- An U.S. senator's claim that the novel coronavirus is linked to biological weapons research is "absolutely crazy," Chinese Ambassador to the United States Cui Tiankai said on Sunday, warning that such an allegation could have damaging consequences.

In an interview with "Face the Nation" on CBS, Cui rebuked Republican Senator Tom Cotton's recent assertion about the origins of the novel coronavirus, saying that "there are all kinds of speculation and rumors." (US-China-Coronavirus-Ambassador)

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BERLIN -- Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, head of the German ruling party Christian Democratic Union (CDU), will not run as chancellor candidate in the 2021 general election and will yield her post as party leader later, German local media FOCUS Online reported on Monday.

According to the report, Kramp-Karrenbauer announced that she will organize the process for candidacy for the chancellor in summer, prepare the party for the future and then hand over the party chair. (Germany-CDU)

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MANILA -- The first novel coronavirus patient in the Philippines has been discharged from the hospital after testing negative for the virus, the country's Health Undersecretary Eric Domingo said Monday.

"The first case has already tested negative twice, and has, in fact, been discharged on Saturday," Domingo told a news conference, noting that negative results from two consecutive tests are needed before a patient is discharged. (Philippines-Novel Coronavirus)

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TOKYO -- Test results showed that more than 60 additional people on a cruise ship quarantined in Yokohama are infected with the novel coronavirus, the Japanese Health Ministry said Monday.

The newest test results brought the number of confirmed cases to more than 150 in Japan, including about 130 on the Diamond Princess cruise ship south of Tokyo. (Japan-Vessel-Novel Coronavirus Cases) Enditem

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