The 17 Countries Yet To Report A Single Case Of Coronavirus
Despite infecting more than 1.2 million people worldwide, Covid-19 hasn't reached every nation on earth -- apparently.
There are 17 countries which are yet to report any confirmed cases of coronavirus, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
The bulk of these states are small Pacific Island nations ranging from Samoa to Vanuatu, plus a handful of Asian or African countries including North Korea and Tajikistan.
While North Korea and Tajikistan have not reported any cases, it is possible they have unreported cases among their population.
However, there are certainly countries which have so far escaped the stranglehold of Covid-19.
These are mainly small islands which see very few visitors and where social-distancing is simply a way of life.
According to data from the UN, seven of the world's top 10 least visited places (most of which are tiny hard-to-reach islands) such as Kiribati and Tuvalu, are coronavirus free.
At the time of writing (April 6) the countries which either legitimately don't have a case of coronavirus or have failed to report them are: Comoros, Kiribati, Lesotho, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, North Korea, Palau, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Solomon Islands, Tajikistan, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Yemen.
The Pacific Islands might be the last place in the world to catch Covid-19, but it's not only thanks to their isolated geography.
Governments of the small island nations, which are scattered across the largest ocean in the world, also responded quickly, aware of just how contagious the coronavirus is.
Nauru, Kiribati, Tonga, Vanuatu all declared a state of emergency as the crisis worsened across the world.
There's also the constant fear of a severe outbreak which would mean these countries would need to send patients abroad -- a difficult undertaking when other nations are closing their borders.
But it's not only island nations being spared. There are a handful of landlocked countries without confirmed cases, or very few.
Last week the tiny African nation of Malawi, which is home to more than 18 million people, reported its first cases of the deadly disease but it's health industry was ready.
"We have been very affected by the HIV epidemic over the past 30 years and also the TB pandemic," Dr Peter MacPherson told the BBC, noting the country is also ramping up testing.
War-torn South Sudan has also recently recorded its first case.
Tajikistan, a landlocked country in central Asia, is yet to officially record a coronavirus case and is one of the few countries which is still playing live sport with its soccer league well in swing.
However there are reports the US government sent aid to Tajikistan, in the form of personal protective equipment designed to help deal with coronavirus, which reportedly came at the request of Tajikistan’s Ministry of Health.
So are they lying?
Elsewhere in Asia, there are reasons for skepticism.
North Korea hasn’t reported any cases. It did take immediate steps to seal its border with China in January but whether it is actually testing residents is another question considering its weak healthcare system and high degree of secrecy.
Turkmenistan also has no confirmed cases and while that may be true, the landlocked nation is also on par with North Korea in terms of state secrecy and isolation -- but it has the benefit of being many more miles away from China.
It might cover 14 million square kilometres, but it's believed the coldest place on earth, Antarctic, has so far escaped the pandemic. And if considered, it would take the total to 18.
While these figures show a gleam of hope, our globalised economy means experts aren't sure anywhere will escape such an infectious disease.
Below is a full list of nations without confirmed cases of Covid-19
- Marshall Islands
- North Korea
- Sao Tome and Principe
- Solomon Islands