US virus patients and businesses sue China over outbreak

Coronavirus

People wearing face masks to protect against the spread of the new coronavirus sit on a bench in front of a propaganda banner encouraging people to wear masks at a public park in Beijing, Thursday, May 7, 2020. China’s government declared the whole country now at low virus risk Thursday as its new cases fall to near zero and no new deaths have been reported from COVID-19 in more than three weeks. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – Lawsuits are starting to pile up around the U.S. seeking to hold China accountable for the coronavirus pandemic. The complaints claim that Chinese authorities did not do enough to corral the virus initially, tried to hide what was happening and engaged in a cover-up to conceal their actions and what they knew. The Chinese foreign ministry says the country has been transparent and that the lawsuits have no factual basis. The cases face an uphill climb because of a 1976 federal law stating that foreign governments are immune from U.S. lawsuits with certain exceptions.

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