Four Tongans who have been quarantined at an Auckland navy base for two weeks were part of more than hundred evacuees who have started to be released after passing health checks this morning.

All have been cleared for release today, and New Zealand remains free from any confirmed cases of coronavirus, NZ Herald reported.

It said the first shuttles have left the military facility bound for Auckland Airport with Pacific Island nationals who will be returning home.

The New Zealanders will be released to return home after medical checks are complete around 1.30pm.

Meanwhile, a group of 25 Tongan athletes were welcomed in London by Tonga’s High Commissioner Hon Fanetupouvava’u Tu’ivakano.

It was the final Tongan group to be evacuated from China amid coronavirus outbreak.

They were expected to return to Tonga via Dubai and Auckland on March 5 and 7.

While in UK the 51 athletes are supervised under the medical supervision of British health professionals.  

CNN report said, all but five deaths from the virus have occurred inside mainland China, where an additional 98 fatal cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the virus, were reported Tuesday morning. The number of confirmed cases in China increased by 1,886, bringing the global total to over 73,325.

The vast majority of those cases have been in China, but concern has been growing in the past week over much smaller but growing outbreaks in Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong.

According to China’s National Health Commission, since the outbreak began in December, more than 12,500 patients have recovered and been discharged from hospital.

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