The World Health Organization (WHO) has officially declared the coronavirus epidemic as a global pandemic. On the concert front, Fleshgod Apocalypse are the latest act to cancel a North American tour, with their home country of Italy on complete lockdown.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus addressed the media earlier today (March 11) to declare the spread of coronavirus as a pandemic. ”This is the first pandemic caused by coronavirus. In the past two weeks, the number of cases of COVID-19 outside China has increased 13-fold, and the number of affected countries has tripled.”

He continues, "In the days and weeks ahead, we expect to see the number of cases, the number of deaths, and the number of affected countries climb even higher. Describing the situation as a pandemic does not change WHO's assessment of the threat posed by the virus. It doesn't change what WHO is doing. And it doesn't change what countries should do." [via NPR]

As for Fleshgod Apocalypse, the death metal band offered a sorrowful statement for having to postpone their tour:

Hello everyone,

It is with heavy hearts that we must announce the postponement of our upcoming tour in North America with the Veleno String Quartet and The Agonist. This has been decided upon due to current entry restrictions in the United States, following recent cases of coronavirus in Italy.

We’re absolutely devastated about the delay, but we’re already working to reschedule the tour for late Summer/early Fall (exact dates coming soon).

We know that there are so many people waiting for us in the US and Canada and we can’t wait to see you. We’ll keep you updated as shows are being rebooked, after which the show tickets and VIP tickets will be honored. So please stay tuned for further developments.

To the many of you asking how you can help support during this time, merch purchases always help and will be used to get us back up to speed and on the road. You can check out our store here:

Thank you guys so much for the immense support. We'll see you on the road, sooner than you think!

The Centers for Disease Control has been reminding Americans not to panic and that the risk of getting the Coronavirus in the U.S. is currently low, but to keep yourself healthy. Make sure to wash your hands, avoid touching your face with unwashed hands, cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and stay home if you’re feeling sick.

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