MILAN (REUTERS) – Six Italians have tested positive for the coronavirus in the northern Italian region of Lombardy, a local official said on Friday (Feb 21), in the first known cases of local transmission in Italy of the potentially deadly illness.

“We have got six cases of coronavirus,” Lombardy councilor Giulio Gallera told a news conference, adding that hundreds of people who had been in contact with the patients were being tested to see if they had been infected.
The first person confirmed to have contracted the virus was believed to have fallen ill after meeting a friend who had recently returned from China.