Now sporting events in the city and inter-provincial tourism have been shut down with fears the whole city may go into lockdown. BBC news correspondent in Beijing tweeted: “In Beijing a new cluster of coronavirus cases emanating from a seafood market. Footage appears to show hundreds of People’s Armed Police sent to the Xin Fa Di wholesale market.
“Officials said traces of the coronavirus found on a chopping board with ‘imported’ salmon.”
BBC correspondent Stephen McDonell added: “This doesn’t mean the virus came from the fish.
“It could just be that the person chopping it was infected.”
Authorities are extremely worried as the Xin Fa Di Market is so vast it is said to supply 80 percent of Beijing’s vegetables and meat.
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It is the largest wholesale food market in Beijing.
So far it has been confirmed that 45 staff members have tested positive.
Authorities closed the Xinfadi market at 3am on Saturday after two men working at a meat research centre who had recently visited the market were reported yesterday to have been infected.
It was not immediately clear how the men had been infected.
Pang Xinghuo, an official at the Beijing Centre for Disease Control said: “We cannot rule out subsequent cases in the future.”
Beijing authorities had earlier halted beef and mutton trading at the Xinfadi market.
There were also closures at other wholesale markets around the city.