Via Reuters: Saudi Arabia replaces health minister amid MERS virus fears. Excerpt:
Saudi Arabian King Abdullah removed Health Minister Abdullah al-Rabeeah from his post on Monday as the kingdom grapples with a worrying surge of new cases of the SARS-like Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).
His duties will be taken over by Labour Minister Adel Fakieh, who keeps his current post, state television reported. The television channel cited the king's royal decree in its report but gave no reason for the switch.
Rabeeah, who on Sunday told a televised news conference there was no medical reason to impose stricter preventative measures against the spread of MERS, has been made an adviser to the Royal Court, the decree said.
Saudi Arabia has reported 244 cases of MERS since the disease was identified in 2012, of which 79 have been fatal.
The spread of new infections slowed during the winter, but there has been a sudden increase in cases this month.
The story is all over the Arabic Saudi media, and also in the very busy #Corona hashtag. While many of the tweets there translate into "found poetry" English whose meaning can only be guessed at, I also see some explicit hostility to the former minister's performance.