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Chinese officials and state media insisted on Monday the emergence of a previously unknown respiratory virus affecting hundreds and believed to have killed three people so far presented “no need to panic” and that the virus was not spreading significantly within China.
The Communist Party’s affirmation the spread of the virus was under control followed officials in Japan, Thailand, and South Korea all confirming infections. The Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reported this weekend it had found evidence of at least two cases not documented in official data, including one in Shanghai, where Chinese officials had claimed the virus had not yet reached.
Virus - Exhibit - Respiratory - Infection - Symptoms
Those affected by the virus exhibit acute respiratory infection symptoms and many have developed severe pneumonia. The virus’s impact on the lungs suggests that it may be airborne; Chinese authorities urged individuals to wear masks to stop it from spreading.
Sanders: Soleimani Killing Broke International Law, Will 'Unleash Some Very, Very Terrible Forces'
Government - Hong - Kong - Face - Masks
The government of Hong Kong made face masks illegal last year in response to anti-communist protests; the region’s top court decreed the ban unconstitutional, but some police still attempt to enforce it.
Officials say the virus likely originated at a seafood market in Wuhan, a central Chinese city of 11 million people. According to the CDC, some of those diagnosed with carrying the virus – now identified as a new mutation of coronavirus – had no contact with the seafood market in question, suggesting the virus may spread from person to person, not just animal-to-person. Authorities in the region have implemented screening checks at airports and other ports of entry and local governments in areas like Hong Kong expanded police power to quarantine suspected patients.
Lunar - New - Year - Holiday - Asia
Lunar New Year, a holiday celebrated throughout Asia and considered one of the heaviest travel seasons on the continent is on Saturday, exacerbating concerns...
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