Wuhan virus: Russian airline suspends flights to Europe over coronavirus

Urals Airlines, based in Yekaterinburg, said it was halting flights to Munich, Paris and Rome as well as the Japanese city of Sapporo until the end of winter.
Urals Airlines, based in Yekaterinburg, said it was halting flights to Munich, Paris and Rome as well as the Japanese city of Sapporo until the end of winter.PHOTO: AFP

MOSCOW (AFP) - Russia's Urals Airlines said on Wednesday (Jan 29) that it had suspended some services to Europe, including Paris and Rome, due to the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus.

The airline, based in the Urals city of Yekaterinburg, was halting flights to Munich, Paris and Rome as well as the Japanese city of Sapporo until the end of winter, it said in a statement.

Those flights had been affected because they are popular with Chinese tourist groups, the airline said in the statement posted on VKontakte, Russia's largest social media network.

Urals Airlines earlier suspended flights to China's Hainan island as well as several other destinations in the country.

Russia does not have any confirmed cases of the new virus but the Russian government has set up a task force to prevent its possible spread.

The country is also working to develop a vaccine against the coronavirus.

The death toll from the new virus in China has soared to 132.

The disease has spread to more than 15 countries since it emerged from the Chinese city of Wuhan late last year, with confirmed infections nearing 6,000 cases.