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Scorpion

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The situation is out of control because of the big number of infected people and the shortage of medical staff. China is locking people in their homes to either stay away from getting infected or simply die inside. It's scary.
 

mtime7

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China is offering families of doctors who died fighting the coronavirus a 'sympathy payment' of $716
horecchio@businessinsider.com (Haven Orecchio-Egresitz)
INSIDERFebruary 20, 2020, 7:47 AM MST

Zhou Qiong, a doctor of department of respiratory medicine at Union Hospital affiliated to Tongji Medical College of Huazhong University of Science and Technology, who is a member of assault team in the fight against the pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province.

Zhou Qiong, a doctor of department of respiratory medicine at Union Hospital affiliated to Tongji Medical College of Huazhong University of Science and Technology, who is a member of "assault team" in the fight against the pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province.
Photo by Cheng Min/Xinhua via Getty
  • Chinese healthcare workers are on the frontlines of battling the coronavirus outbreak and several have lost their lives to the virus.
  • On Monday, the government announced that it will pay $716 to families of healthcare providers who have died, Shanghaiist reported.
  • Medics who have been infected, but have not died, will receive $429.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.
Chinese healthcare providers are on the frontlines of the coronavirus outbreak, and several have lost their lives trying to save others.
The government is sympathetic to the families of those medics who sacrificed their lives at work, but only to the tune of $716 (or 5,000 yuan), according to the English news outlet Shanghaiist.
On Monday the Wuhan Municipal Committee's Organization Department announced the new "sympathy" measures that it was taking to aid families of medical workers who have been infected or killed by the virus.
Workers who have been infected — but haven't succumbed to the virus — will also be compensated under the new efforts. They'll receive $429 (or 3,000 yuan), according to the Chinese-language People's Daily Client.
The death toll of a coronavirus outbreak sweeping China has reached 2,130, with more than 75,000 people infected worldwide. Eight people have died outside of mainland China.
Among the healthcare providers who have died is Li Wenliang, a 34-year-old doctor at the Central Wuhan Hospital. He was one of the first people to sound the alarm about the new outbreak in December, but he was silenced by the police in Wuhan and forced to sign a letter saying he was "making false comments."
Li caught the coronavirus after treating patients and died on February 7.
On Weibo, a Chinese social media site, users were shocked by the amount being paid to the families of affected healthcare workers, Shanghaiist reported.
"Is this missing a few zeros?" one asked.
"So the life of a doctor is only worth 5,000 yuan now?" another wrote, according to Shanghaiist.
According to Business Insider's Aria Bendix, China has less than two physicians for every 10,000 residents.
When the outbreak first began, it was unknown that the virus could spread from human to human and some medical workers went without protective gear.
In Wuhan, which has been in quarantine since Jan. 24, doctors are overwhelmed with patients. Some hospital workers have been wearing adult diapers because there is no time to use the bathroom.
"The hospitals have been flooding with patients, there are thousands, I haven't seen so many before," one doctor told BBC News early in the quarantine. "I am scared because this is a new virus and the figures are alarming."
 

Falcon29

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Coronavirus spreading to the Middle East, cases in Iran, Kuwait, Bahrain and Iraq reported.
 

mtime7

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■ Pakistan and Turkey temporarily closed their borders with Iran, which announced a weeklong closing of schools, universities and cultural centers. The outbreak has killed at least 12 people in Iran, according to state television, the largest number of deaths outside China.​
 

Falcon29

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■ Pakistan and Turkey temporarily closed their borders with Iran, which announced a weeklong closing of schools, universities and cultural centers. The outbreak has killed at least 12 people in Iran, according to state television, the largest number of deaths outside China.​

If there are 12 deaths in Iran than the outbreak is bigger than the 43 cases reported by Iranian authorities. Has to be similar to Italy's figure at least.
 

mtime7

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Iran Prepares to Suffer the Wrath of the Coronavirus
Iran has sought to deny that the coronavirus is spreading within its borders. Now, the Middle East is facing a new type of crisis—one that could further exacerbate tension in the region.

by Seth J. Frantzman
The spread of coronavirus has rapidly come to the Middle East after almost two months of being mostly contained in China, where it has killed more than two thousand people. Iran’s leadership has responded by either ignoring the crisis or denying that it exists, even as all of Iran’s neighboring countries have closed the borders that they share with Iran and began to institute checks on Iranians traveling abroad.

The reaction of Middle Eastern states reveals a lack of coordination in responding to the emerging crises and also creates questions about what kind of impact a virus can have on a region that has deep divisions and smoldering conflicts. For instance, on Sunday evening Israel carried out airstrikes in Gaza and Syria in response to rocket fire from Palestine while the Russian-backed Syrian regime continued to clash with Turkish-backed forces in Syria’s northern Idlib. In Idlib alone, roughly nine hundred thousandpeople displaced in recent weeks, just some of the millions still living as refugees and internally displaced persons (IDP) across the region.

It is unclear how the coronavirus suddenly appeared in Iran last week. The number of dead rose to at least twelve by February 24 and there could soon be many more. Iran’s media observed a blackout on information about the spread of the virus in the country over the weekend of February 20 while the government scrambled to highlight elections results from a dismal turnout last Friday. Meanwhile, the only information available to the average person about how to prevent the virus from spreading were some infographics on local media. On Monday, health officials denied rumors, spread by a lawmaker, that the coronavirus had killed fifty people. By that time, officials had ordered the closure of schools and universities, an extraordinary move since they refused to reveal how many people actually had the virus.

Kuwait, Iraq, Turkey, Armenia, Pakistan and Afghanistan have decided to close their borders or institute new checks and quarantines in an effort to prevent the virus from spreading from Tehran and the religious city of Qom. In the Kurdistan region of Iraq, health officials have observed that more than one thousand people have returned from Iran. Meanwhile, Turkey revealed that it suspected there were over 750 cases in Tehranas of last Friday and has taken additional precautions. As for Iraq, it has closed its border with Kuwait to prevent the virus from spreading. Kuwait has, in turn, evacuated hundreds of citizens from Iran. But in Lebanon and Iraq flights to Iran continue. Muqtada al-Sadr, the Iraqi politician, even recently returned from Qom. Now there are rumors some seminary students who came back from Iran might be sick in Najaf., Iraq. Similarly, people are sick in Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman. In Israel, the first cases from a cruise ship have also been detected amid fears that South Korean tourists also may have spread the virus. Neighboring Jordan and the Palestinian Authority are taking precautions.

The shadow of the coronavirus now hangs over the Middle East as it did over many Asian countries in January and early February. However, there is a major difference in the way that the virus can be confronted in the region when compared to measures taken in Italy or Singapore. Most Middle Eastern Countries already have local crises. For instance, in Iraq has endured five months of protests that have left six hundred dead and twenty thousand wounded. The country is divided politically and there is a lack of trust between communities and the government. ISIS is still a threat and Iraq’s cities lie in ruins two years after the ISIS war. Additionally, there are not only IDP camps where groups like Yazidis still live but also widespread sanitation problems that affect millions of people in major cities like Basra. There are also porous borders with Iran and Iraq, and between Iran, Turkey and Afghanistan and Pakistan. There are insurgent groups, smugglers, and other issues.

The Middle East is also deeply divided into several alliance systems. In 2017, Saudi Arabia led its allies to break relations with Qatar. Saudi Arabia is part of an alliance system that includes Bahrain, the UAE, Egypt and their allies, such as the government of Yemen and Khalifa Haftar, a Lebanese military leader. These countries maintain relatively close ties to Jordan and Kuwait, both of which are monarchies. On the other end of the spectrum are allies of Iran, which include Shi’ite paramilitaries in Iraq, the Syrian government, Hezbollah, and leading politicians in Lebanon and Iraq. Iran also backs the Houthi rebels in Yemen, who fired rockets at Saudi Arabia during a G20 confab.

A third side of the Middle East is represented by Turkey and Qatar, both close allies, and their support of the Tripoli-based Government of the National Accord in Libya. They also have close connections with Hamas, which runs Gaza. Turkey plays a major role in northern Syria while the United States plays a role in eastern Syria. The Kurdistan Region of Iraq, a developed area that is preparing to meet the coronavirus threat, is close to both the United States and some Gulf states. Plus, it enjoys close trade relations with Ankara. Add to this the role of Israel, which has enjoyed better, although not official, relations with Gulf states in recent years. This is the Middle East that is about to endure a major health crisis.

Confronting the coronavirus has included a mix of shuddering borders, banning people and quarantining individuals. This is the process that has taken place in Asia and is being applied to the Middle East. However, Middle East governments lack close relations and a coordinated response, which is a major difference from Asian states that, with some exceptions such as North Korea, tend to enjoy more amicable relations or at least communicate with each other. Iran’s regime has sought to deny that the coronavirus crisis is emerging. It has long practiced a method of denying social problems, whether flooding or poverty. It even denied the protests last year. Additionally, it prefers to blame the United States or other countries for spreading rumors about the failures of the government in Tehran. But protests last year and clashes with dissident groups in periphery regions point to widespread displeasure with Tehran. And a low turnout shows a lack of faith in institutions. The virus crisis has already led to clashes in Talesh and anger among university students. Iran does not appear to have instituted the kind of quarantine in Qom that China did in Wuhan. It does not even appear to have replicated the measures Italy has taken. Religious students and pilgrims remain free to come and go to public areas in Qom, which is how the virus has been spreading from Iran.

To date, the virus has spread through the heartland of Iran into provinces such as Qom, Rasht, Hamadan, Markazi and Isfahan. Schools and universities were closed in at least a third of the country’s provinces. However, minimal information on the crisis is available in Tehran and the government of Hassan Rouhani, which hosted an Austrian delegation on February 23, continues to act as if everything is normal. Iran’s neighboring states will continue to wait and see if the crisis grows. On Monday, new cases were reported in Iraq, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait and countries are concerned at what might come next. Iran’s current numbers of dead, the second largest outside of China, indicate that there are more people who are infected with the virus than what has been reported. Putting a stop to it will require the Tehran government to trust and share information with its neighbors. In a region where media censorship and self-censorship are normal and most countries are not democracies, there are rumors abound that the virus will spread widely. Political divisions and complicated alliances will contribute to tensions over how various countries respond to the virus.
 

mtime7

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Desperate to stop virus’ spread, countries limit travel
By KIM TONG-HYUNG and MATT SEDENSKYtoday



1 of 18
A protester holds a sign to denounce government's coronavirus responses in Daegu, South Korea, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020. China and South Korea on Tuesday reported more cases of a new viral illness that has been concentrated in North Asia but is causing global worry as clusters grow in the Middle East and Europe. The signs read "Save Daegu."(Lee Moo-ryul/Newsis via AP)


SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Police manned checkpoints in quarantined towns, governments issued travel warnings and more flights were suspended Tuesday as officials desperately sought to stop the seemingly inevitable spread of a new virus.
Clusters of the illness continued to balloon outside mainland China, fueling apprehension across the globe that was reflected in sagging financial markets.
The crisis pushed into areas seen as among the worst-equipped to deal with an outbreak as well as some of the world’s richest nations, including South Korea and Italy. As it proliferates, the virus is bringing a sense of urgency for local officials determined to contain it but often unsure how.

“It’s a matter of speed and time: We must create a clear turning point within this week,” said President Moon Jae-in of South Korea, where the caseload grew by 144, with a total of 977 people sickened.

Cases of people who could have infected many others spurred fears.

Virus reaches more than 3 dozen countries and 80,000 people
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, some of which cause the common cold. Others have evolved into more severe illnesses, such as SARS and MERS.
Countries in bold have reported a first case within last 7 days

Page 1 of 3
LOCATIONFIRST REPORTEDCONFIRMED CASES DEATHS
ChinaDecember 31, 201977,658
77,658
2,663
South KoreaJanuary 20, 2020977
977
11
JapanJanuary 15, 2020860
860
4
ItalyJanuary 31, 2020283
283
7
IranFebruary 19, 202095
95
15
SingaporeJanuary 23, 202089
89
0
Hong KongJanuary 23, 202081
81
2
ThailandJanuary 13, 202037
37
0
United StatesJanuary 21, 202035
35
0
TaiwanJanuary 21, 202030
30
1
AustraliaJanuary 25, 202023
23
0
MalaysiaJanuary 25, 202022
22
0
BahrainFebruary 24, 202017
17
0
VietnamJanuary 24, 202016
16
0
GermanyJanuary 28, 202016
16
0
Data as of Feb. 25 at 9 a.m. Eastern; *691 of Japan's reported cases were from a cruise ship docked in Yokohama..
Source: AP reports Graphic Phil Holm

Korean Air said one of its crew members tested positive, but the airline didn’t disclose the flights the employee had worked on. On a U.S. military base in Daegu, the center of infections in South Korea, officials said a servicemember’s spouse had also been infected. And in the tiny Persian Gulf nation of Bahrain, one of those infected was a school bus driver who had transported students as recently as Sunday.

Also testing positive was the head of Iran’s virus task force, who just a day earlier gave a news conference in Tehran in which he tried to minimize the danger posed by the outbreak.

In Italy’s north, where more than 200 people were sickened, a dozen towns were sealed off and police wearing face masks patrolled.

Two neighbors of Italy — Croatia and Austria — reported their first cases of the virus.

Croatia, Hungary and Ireland advised against traveling to Italy’s affected area, one of a number of governmental moves seeking to limit further exposure. Bahrain suspended flights to Dubai while the United States’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued its highest travel alert on South Korea, advising citizens to avoid nonessential trips. Japan urged citizens to avoid unessential trips to South Korea’s hardest-hit areas.

A culture of long days at the office in Japan came to terms with the outbreak, with the government urging employers to allow workers to telecommute and have more flexible hours, simple moves Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed hope could help control the spread.

“We are at an extremely important time in ending the spread of infection at an early stage,” Abe said at a meeting of a task force on the outbreak.

Even in places where no cases have sprouted up, leaders kept a wary eye, such as Denmark, where two former military barracks were being prepared as quarantine centers. Still, uncertainty remained about how to effectively limit the epidemic.

Italy had taken Europe’s most stringent preventative measures against COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, and yet became home to the biggest outbreak outside Asia. Experts in Japan, with one of the world’s most sophisticated health systems, acknowledged the country’s handling of the virus-stricken Diamond Princess cruise ship was flawed and could have allowed the problem to magnify.

In comments reflecting both defiance and dubiousness over what measures work, French health minister Olivier Veran said the country would not shut its border or call off mass gatherings.

“We don’t close borders because we would not be able to, we don’t do it because it would be meaningless,” he said on French radio RTL. “Should we ban gatherings? Should we stop the Fashion Week? Should we suspend matches? Should we close universities? The answer is no.”

Full Coverage: Virus Outbreak
China reported 508 new cases and another 71 deaths, 68 of them in the central city of Wuhan, where the epidemic was first detected in December. The updates bring mainland China’s totals to 77,658 cases and 2,663 deaths.

But while China remained home to the vast majority of the world’s cases, the world’s attention increasingly moved to where the outbreak would spread next. Iran was eyed as a source for new transmissions in the Middle East, including in Iraq, Kuwait and Oman, which were grappling with the spread past their borders.

In South Korea’s southeastern city of Daegu and surrounding areas, panic over the virus has brought towns to an eerie standstill. The country reported its 11th fatality from COVID-19 amid signs, big and small, of the problem that has magnified nearly 15-fold in a week.

Health officials said they were working to finish testing hundreds of members of a church that has the country’s biggest cluster of infections. The church agreed to hand over a list of 200,000 members nationwide so screenings could widen.

“We are creating and refining our system as we go along,” said Dr. Kim Jin-hwan of Keimyung University Dongsan Medical Center in Daegu.

South Korea’s professional basketball league said it will ban spectators until the outbreak is under control, while Busan City said the world team table tennis championships it planned to host in March would be postponed until June.

South Korea’s military confirmed 13 troops had contracted the virus, resulting in quarantines for many others and the halting of field training.

___

Sedensky reported from Bangkok. Associated Press writer Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo contributed to this report.
 

Falcon29

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@Scorpion

Do you think they will cancel Hajj this year because of this virus? Or just add another layer of medical screening process ?
 

Scorpion

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Do you think they will cancel Hajj this year because of this virus? Or just add another layer of medical screening process ?
It's hard to tell but the country is more than prepared to ensure public safety. We have had experience in this since the 2012 MERS breakout. Medical screening teams dispatched to the borders with GCC states so far and in all international airports for selected flights especially flights coming from Aisa and Europe. There may be some extra measures to be taken during the Umrah season now. As for the Hajj, we might see a decrease in number but Saudi Arabia will call for an OIC meeting if anything.
 

mtime7

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The head of an Iranian government task force on the coronavirus who had urged the public not to overreact about its spread has tested positive for the illness himself, authorities said Tuesday, as new cases emanating from the country rapidly emerged across the Middle East.

Only a day earlier, a coughing and heavily sweating Iraj Harirchi said at a televised news conference in Tehran that “the situation is almost stable in the country.”

The acknowledgement of Harirchi’s illness underscores a growing crisis of confidence felt by many in Iran after nationwide economic protests, a U.S. drone striking killing a top Iranian general and Iran accidentally shooting down a commercial jetliner and insisting for days that it hadn’t.
 

Falcon29

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This is affecting the stock market quite a bit. More and more people also being advised against travel.
 

Scorpion

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Do you think they will cancel Hajj this year because of this virus? Or just add another layer of medical screening process ?
Saudi Arabia suspended all flights, Umrah and tourism visas. Restricted incoming GCC citizens.
 

BATMAN

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■ Pakistan and Turkey temporarily closed their borders with Iran, which announced a weeklong closing of schools, universities and cultural centers. The outbreak has killed at least 12 people in Iran, according to state television, the largest number of deaths outside China.​

There are thousands of Pakistanis in Iran, at any given point and hundreds in Iraq.
If Pakistan govt. had closed borders, than there would be thousands of Pakistanis in Iran, situation is that there are non!
Only recently they CLAIM to have stopped people from going to Iran, but people continue to come from Iran, that was never stopped and never will be, because those visiting Iran are thug kinds and state politicians, ministers, advisers, etc. are there patrons.
So without evidence, it never happened. Regime can say many things as they say on daily basis ever since they went into last election campaign.
 

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