Hong Kong On Fresh SARS Alert

Nine people in Hong Kong are undergoing tests after showing symptoms of the respiratory virus SARS.

The latest scare to hit the territory came after a 34-year-old woman suspected of contracting the illness was cleared by the health authorities on Tuesday.

The new suspects are nine people living at a home for the elderly. They are being treated at a Hong Kong hospital where results of further tests are still awaited.

Hong Kong was badly affected by the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome earlier this year which killed almost 300 people in the territory.

Airlines suffered huge falls in passenger numbers before the World Health Organization lifted travel warnings and said the disease had been contained. However, there have been constant warnings that a further outbreak is possible.

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SARS affected nearly 8,000 people worldwide and caused over 900 deaths. Its origin was traced to the southern Chinese province of Guangdong.

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