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Coronavirus: A leading US virus expert has criticised the White House for a hosting what he says turned out to be a “superspreader event” linked to an outbreak of COVID-19.

Dr Anthony Fauci, an infectious diseases expert and member of the White House’s coronavirus task force, also criticised Donald Trump’s use of the word “cure” when discussing his recovery from the illness.

A number of Mr Trump’s aides and allies tested positive for COVID-19 after attending a Rose Garden event where the president unveiled Amy Coney Barrett as his Supreme Court pick.

Dr Fauci appears to have confirmed speculation the ceremony was a “superspreader event” that led to multiple people becoming infected.

When asked by CBS News whether masks were effective in limiting the spread of coronavirus, Dr Fauci replied: “I think the – the data speaks for themselves.

Dr Fauci also said he did not think the fact the president was heard coughing during an interview with Fox News on Thursday night was cause for alarm.

He continued: “Most people, when they recover, they recover fine. In a linear fashion, they get better and better and better, which it appears that the president is doing.

“But having a bit of a lingering cough is not at all unusual as someone recovers.”

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