North Korea has blocked foreign tourists from entering the country, travel operators said Wednesday, amid fears over the spread of a new coronavirus first detected in China.

Young Pioneer Tours, a China-based tour agency specializing in travel to the North, said in a notice posted on its website that the North was "temporarily" closing "its borders to all foreign tourists as a precaution" against the virus.

"Further details are yet to be confirmed by our travel partners in North Korea and we will continue to make all future announcements on our website," the firm added.