KEY POINTS

  • China is intent on erasing its stigma as the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic still sweeping the world
  • It claims all new COVID-19 cases it's now detecting are imported cases
  • There have been no locally transmitted infections reported so far

Its campaign to absolve itself of responsibility for unleashing the COVID-19 pandemic onto the world has China claiming other countries are to blame for the new cases of the coronavirus it found on it shores.

On Tuesday, mainland China admitted to only 47 new cases of COVID-19 infections -- all of which it claims were imported by travelers entering its borders. There have been no local transmission cases so far. The National Health Commission (NHC) also reported four new deaths, bringing the total death toll to 3,281 since December 2019.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 infections stands at 81,218. China has added a new metric to its data: imported COVID-19 cases. It now claims it's the victim of 474 imported cases, Reuters reported.

China also claims there are no new confirmed cases in Hubei province, the epicenter of the global pandemic and where the virus began in December 2019. NHC also alleges 73,650 patients in mainland China have recovered from the disease and have been sent home.

NHC also said imported COVID-19 cases in Shanghai rose to a record 19 cases but declined in Beijing, Guangdong and Fujian. China claims all new cases were found in Chinese returning from abroad or from foreigners in Tianjin, Inner Mongolia, Jiangsu, Sichuan, Jilin, Zhejiang, Shandong and Shaanxi.

Four imported cases from the Philippines were foudn in Quanzhou city in Fujian province.

On the other hand, the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University reported 53,660 cases in the U.S. as of Tuesday evening. It listed the global case infection total at 417,582 with total deaths at 18,612.

The United States stands to become the world's new COVID-19 epicenter replacing China, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

WHO said it sees a “very large acceleration” in coronavirus infections in the United States, which it said shows the potential of becoming the new global COVID-19 pandemic epicenter. Over the past 24 hours, 85% of new cases were from the U.S. and Europe, according to WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris. Of this total, 40% was from the United States. Harris also confirmed the global pandemic is accelerating very rapidly.

“We are now seeing a very large acceleration in cases in the U.S. So it does have that potential," said Harris.“...They (the United States) have a very large outbreak and an outbreak that is increasing in intensity."

The wet market in China's Wuhan where the virus is believed to have emerged was shut down after the outbreak The wet market in China's Wuhan where the virus is believed to have emerged was shut down after the outbreak Photo: AFP / Hector RETAMAL