The head of the World Health Organization said Monday that the threat of the new coronavirus becoming a pandemic is growing as over 100 countries and regions have reported cases of the virus.

"Now that the virus has a foothold in so many countries, the threat of a pandemic has become very real," WHO Director General Tedros Ghebreyesus said in a press briefing.

Noting that the number of coronavirus cases has topped 100,000 over the weekend with the affected countries and regions surpassing 100, the WHO chief said, "It's certainly troubling that so many people and countries have been affected, so quickly."

But Tedros stressed that the coronavirus can be contained with appropriate actions, saying, "It would be the first pandemic in history that could be controlled."

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