Chinese state media say Beijing has promised to cooperate with the World Health Organization in fighting the SARS epidemic, which has killed more than 300 people worldwide.
The Xinhua news agency said (Sunday) government officials issued the statement during a visit to the Chinese capital by a W-H-O delegation. The agency quoted W-H-O officials as saying cooperation had gotten off to a good start after a visit to Beijing's Disease Control Center.
On Saturday, authorities ordered all libraries and entertainment venues in the Chinese capital temporarily closed in the latest effort to contain the epidemic.
The World Health Organization had sharply criticized China in recent days for failing to report promptly and accurately on the rising number of SARS cases.
By Late Sunday, W-H-O officials had registered about five-thousand cases of SARS worldwide. The illness has killed 131 people in China and 133 in Hong Kong, as well as people in Canada, Singapore, Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines.
In other developments, Taiwan imposed a mandatory 10-day quarantine on all travelers arriving from China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Canada -- the countries hit hardest by the epidemic. The announcement came as the island republic reported its first SARS death.