READ UPDATES IN CHINESE: 新冠病毒疫情最新消息汇总
Here’s what you need to know:
Half of China’s population is facing new travel restrictions.
Across China, officials have imposed controls of various kinds on people’s movements, hoping that minimizing contact will prevent the virus from circulating further.
To gauge the scale and breadth of these policies, The New York Times examined dozens of local government announcements and reports from state-run news outlets.
The Times’s analysis found that at least 150 million people in China — over 10 percent of the country’s population — are facing government restrictions about how often they can leave their homes.
They represent a subset of the more than 760 million people in China whose neighborhoods and villages have imposed strictures of some sort on residents’ comings and goings, as The Times reported over the weekend. That larger figure represents more than half of the country’s population, and roughly one in 10 people on the planet.
China’s lockdowns vary widely in their strictness. Neighborhoods in some places require residents only to show ID, sign in and have their temperature checked when they enter. Others prohibit residents from bringing guests.
But in places with more stringent policies, only one person from each household is allowed to leave their home at a time, and not necessarily every day. Many neighborhoods have issued the equivalent of paper hall passes to ensure that residents comply.
In one district in the city of Xi’an, the authorities have stipulated that residents may leave their homes only once every three days to shop for food and other essentials. They also specify that the shopping may not take longer than two hours.
Tens of millions of other people are living in places where local officials have “encouraged” but not ordered neighborhoods to restrict people’s ability to leave their homes, The Times found.
And with many neighborhoods and localities deciding their own policies on residents’ movements, it is possible that the total number of affected people is even higher still.
Japan announced 88 more cruise ship cases.
Japan’s Ministry of Health announced on Tuesday that 88 additional cases of coronavirus were confirmed on the Diamond Princess cruise ship, bringing the total to 542 as the quarantine period neared an end for a cohort of passengers set to leave the vessel on Wednesday.
Officials said that as of Tuesday, 2,404 out of the 3,700 passengers and crew initially on board had been tested for the virus. The new cases include people who did not show symptoms. Health officials said those who had tested positive would be taken to medical facilities.
A 14-day quarantine period for passengers is set to end on Wednesday. People who have tested negative for the virus and do not have fever or respiratory symptoms will be checked a final time by an infrared camera before disembarking, according to a notice given to passengers. (But those bunking with someone who tested positive would not be allowed to disembark, the notice said.)
More passengers will leave on Thursday and Friday if their test results are negative, the Ministry of Health said in a statement. The ship’s crew members will also undergo a quarantine period, the notice said, although it was unclear when it would begin.
On Sunday, the U.S. government evacuated American passengers opting to leave the ship and be taken to a military base for another 14-day quarantine period. The 61 remaining American passengers still on the ship will not be able to return to the United States until March 4, the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo said.
The governments of Australia, Canada and Hong Kong have also said they would evacuate citizens from the ship.
Content retrieved from: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/18/world/asia/china-coronavirus.html.