MEXICO CITY (AFP) - The global swine flu outbreak spread further on Wednesday as Germany became the latest country to confirm cases on its soil while Mexico desperately tried to keep the lid on the virus. With fears rising of easy transmission between people, authorities in Mexico City shut down bars, cafes, gyms, cinemas and tourist sites, including the world-famous Aztec and Mayan pyramids. Mexico nearly doubled its number of confirmed swine flu cases to 49, including seven deaths from the virus, as travel quarantine against the country widened. Tests on more than 150 patients suspected to have the A/H1N1 flu detected 23 new cases early Wednesday, adding to 26 already reported, the health ministry said in a statement. Officials at Berlins Robert Koch Institute, responsible for disease control and prevention, said a 22-year-old woman was in hospital in Hamburg and that a 37-year-old woman and a man in his 30s were in separate hospitals in Bavaria. While Mexico remained the only country to have recorded deaths from the virus, other nations announced their infection tallies had increased. Authorities in Israel, New Zealand and Spain increased their confirmed cases of infection with the virus, believed to be a previously unseen amalgam of different flu viruses. We are dealing with a new strain of influenza, said Richard Besser, acting head of the US Centres for Disease Control (CDC). The World Health Organization (WHO) has raised its warning level to Phase 4 on a 1-6 scale, which indicates the illness is being passed from person to person, although officials said much about the outbreak was still unknown. Experts say the current virus a version of swine flu identified as A/H1N1 cannot be caught from eating meat from pigs, and instead are recommending simple hygiene procedures like washing hands. Some have suggested that those who died in Mexico were treated too late or with insufficient drugs, or that perhaps the strain mutated into something less virulent when it left the country. In addition to the health concerns, there have also been worries that the outbreak will badly hurt the airline and travel industries, which have already been suffering because of the global economic slowdown. WHO assistant director general Keiji Fukuda said it was critical to identify travellers from Mexico who might be infected with swine flu. US President Barack Obama is seeking 1.5 billion dollars from Congress to boost US efforts to contain the flus spread, the White House said. California declared a state of emergency and said they had detected a death in Los Angeles that might have resulted from the virus. South Korean officials said the country had nine suspected cases of swine flu infection, but that four of those had turned out negative. China meanwhile angrily rejected foreign media reports pointing to the country as the source of a deadly swine flu outbreak, saying they were baseless and aimed at tarnishing the nations image. Meanwhile, a US Marine is suspected of falling ill with swine flu and has been quarantined on a California military base with his roommate, and 37 others who came in contact with him are under observation, the Marine Corps commandant said Wednesday. Meanwhile, a 23-month-old child died from swine flu in the United States the first fatal victim outside Mexico as the global spread of the virus heightened calls Wednesday for tougher travel restrictions. The toddler who died in Texas was a Mexican who crossed the border for treatment, officials said, as three new countries announced confirmed cases of the virus. Another death in Los Angeles was also being investigated by US authorities. Meanwhile, a top US health official told lawmakers that vaccines against seasonal flu likely to not protect against swine flu and that a vaccine against that deadly disease cannot be ready before September. If everything went great, production could lead to availability as early as September, Anne Schuchat, acting deputy director for science and public health program at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But everything doesnt always go great, she warned the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Schuchat said there were active efforts to prepare for making the vaccine, but, when asked whether it would definitely be made, replied: I dont believe that decision has been made yet.