Friday, 21 February 2020

S Korean coronavirus cases explode


South Korean Coronavirus 

Cases Explode After "Super 

Spreader" Event


20 February, 2020

One day after South Korea reported its first coronavirus death and shortly after all of Daegu city's 2.5 million residents were put on lock-down, the number of covid-19 cases in South Korea has exploded, with 52 new cases reported overnight, representing a third of all the nation's cases.

After four largely uneventful weeks in which South Korea had confirmed just 30 cases, the number of cases has soared five fold in just three days, rising from 31 cases on Tuesday  to 156 on Friday (local time), in what appears to be a very aggressive exponential increase.
Notably, thirty-nine of the cases are related to a cluster at a church in Daegu, the city that "looks like a zombie apocalypse",  according to a statement from Korea Centers for Disease Control.
















Earlier in the day, officials said the city of Daegu was facing an “unprecedented crisis” after coronavirus infections that centred on a controversial “cult” church, linked to a branch of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, surged over the past two days. The city of 2.5 million people, which is two hours south of the capital Seoul, was turned into a ghost town after health officials said the bulk of country’s 31 new cases announced on Thursday were linked to a branch of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus (and now another 39).
Mayor Kwon Young-jin made a televised address, urging citizens to wear masks and remain indoors while revealing his concerns that the contagion could rapidly overwhelm the city's health infrastructure. “We are in an unprecedented crisis,” the mayor told reporters, unaware that the last thing he can afford to do in times like these is tell the truth.
He ordered the shutdown of all kindergartens and public libraries, according to Yonhap. Schools in the city were considering postponing the beginning of the spring term scheduled for early March. Shopping malls and movie theaters were also empty and the usually busy city streets were quiet. A concert featuring BTS and other K-pop stars that was set for Daegu Stadium on 8 March has been postponed.
The defense ministry banned troops stationed in Daegu from leaving their barracks and receiving guests. The US military imposed similar restrictions on its army base in the city, which houses thousands of troops, family members and civilian employees, curbing travel and closing schools and child care centers.
In what the Korean center for disease control called a “super spreader” eventalmost half of the country’s total of 82 infections have been linked to a 61-year-old woman who worships at the Daegu church, which has often accused of being a cult.








Medical staff move a patient infected with the coronavirus in Daegu. Photograph: AP

She first developed a fever on 10 February but reportedly twice refused to be tested for the coronavirus on the grounds that she had not recently travelled abroad. She attended at least four services before being diagnosed. So far, almost 40 other members of the church have been confirmed as infected.
Shincheonji claims that its founder, Lee Man-hee, has donned the mantle of Jesus Christ and will take 144,000 people with him to Heaven, body and soul, on Judgement Day. And if the number of cases continues to grow exponentially, Judgment Day may be in early March.
Daegu’s municipal government said there were 1,001 Shincheonji members in the city, all of whom had been asked to self-quarantine, with 90 of them currently showing symptoms. Those who have symptoms “will be tested as soon as possible”, Kwon Young-jin said, urging stronger action from the government in Seoul and calling the national response “inadequate”.
“We plan to test all believers of that church and have asked them to stay at home isolated from their families.”
The situation was “very grave”, South Korean vice health minister Kim Kang-lip said at a separate briefing.
Shincheonji said on Thursday that it had closed down all its facilities nationwide.
“We are deeply sorry that because of one of our members, who thought of her condition as a cold because she had not travelled abroad, led to many in our church being infected and thereby caused concern to the local community,” it said in a statement.
Separately a man in his 60s from the neighboring Cheongdo county tested positive for the coronavirus after dying Wednesday following symptoms of pneumonia, authorities said. He was among 15 people found to be infected at a hospital.
* * *
Meanwhile, a few hundred kilometers west, China continues to pretend it is successfully containing the virus, although it apparently can't even do that. One week after Beijing reported nearly 15,000 new cases after a change in the definition of "infection", China reverted back to the original definition in hopes of drastically reducing the number of new cases and boosting people's confidence it was successfully containing the pandemic. The result was that the number of new cases on Feb 19 was just 391, one of the lowest since the start of the pandemic, and a far cry from the 15,000 new cases reported a week earlier. Alas, in its ambition to get people back to work, the case number was too low and nobody believed it, resulting in even greater self-quarantining as China's population increasingly believes that Beijing is no longer telling it the truth and is willing to sacrifice the population just so some factories can resume production.
Meanwhile, as China bounces around between one definition and another, in hopes of finding some "just right" middle ground between reporting too many cases and sparking a market crash, or too few cases and leading to social violence as people on the ground certainly know just how bad it truly is, Beijing is now losing all credibility and even China's best friend in the US, Bloomberg, writes that "Hubei Changes Virus Count Method With Data Mistrust Growing." This happened after on Thursday China reported that it had just 349 additional confirmed cases, compared with almost 1,700 additional cases from the day before; the number then doubled to 889 on Friday as China appears to have given up on any pretense at reporting data objectively.
The outcome appears to be a recreating of the famous surgery scene from Spice Like Us, where China comes up with some made up number, gauges the market's and media's reaction, and then China offers a totally opposite number on the next day as it scramble to give everyone what they want while creating the fiction that it is in control.
The irony, of course, is that the more China manipulates the data, the less anyone will believe a positive outcome for the epidemic and will instead claim that this is just the result of Chinese propaganda: "It points to a rather concerning confusion over how best to officially report the number of cases, leading to a loss of confidence in the true numbers,” said Jeffrey Halley, a Singapore-based senior market analyst with Oanda Asia Pacific Pte. "That could mean that internationally, the rest of the world keeps China in lockdown for longer, which will not be good for the ‘V-shaped recovery’ projections."
As reported previously, the latest changes cast doubt over whether the drop in new cases - a positive sign that the epidemic is coming under control at the epicenter - is actually happening. In recent days, China’s leaders have scrambled to project optimism over the outbreak, which has shut down large parts of its economy and plunged industries from retail to aviation into crisis. Companies and factories across China are now being urged to re-start economic activity, while Chinese premier Li Keqiang said on Monday that the outbreak is on "a positive trend."
check points cancelled as gov. encourages people to go back to work, at Xingtai in province.
为配合复工,邢台19个检查点全撤了.
Click here for more 更多视频在这里: http://bit.ly/2uBfJPr 
What Li meant is that Beijing is willing to sacrifice healthy citizens by commingling them with potentially infected ones, if it means that China's GDP, already set for a record plunge, can be pushed up just a bit. Of course, none of this is lost on the people, and in a country where the biggest morbid fear is one where the middle class rises up and overthrows the communist parasites in charge, there is a distinct possibility that by telegraphing to the people just how worthless their lives are to Beijing, the instead of delivering a "positive trend" for the outbreak, China's ruthless rulers may soon be on the receiving end of what happens when 1.4 billion Chinese grab the pitchforks and go after those who are willing to risk their lives if only it means that the "quota met" bonus payment for 2020 is made.

IRAN SUDDENLY THE NEW 

CENTER OF GLOBAL 

CORONAVIRUS ATTENTION

The Islamic Republic Is Accused Of Covering Up The Full Impact Of The Outbreak.



21 February, 2020



Tuesday, Iran reported its first two confirmed cases of coronavirus, which were soon amended to deaths. The next day, the “official” number of infections had more than quadrupled—and no one knows why.

The two Iranians who were found to have died from the coronavirus had no recent travel history, and seemingly had no way of directly contracting the virus from a Chinese national in their close proximity. So, how did they contract the disease?

No one knows—and that’s become a problem, not just for Iran, but for its neighbors, as well.

The state-run PressTV reports:

A health ministry spokesman said on Thursday that two people in Qom and one more in Arak, a provincial capital to the southwest of Qom, had been tested positive for coronavirus.

Kianush Jahanpour said on Twitter that the affected person in Arak was “a dear colleague from the health community” in Iran. He later told ISNA news agency that the man was a doctor from Qom.

The official also retweeted a statement from the World Health Organization (WHO) Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office saying that they were in close contact with Iranian authorities to investigate and respond to the outbreak.

The statements come a day after two deaths were reported as a result of a first incidence of the epidemic in Iran, more than a month after it began in central China.

The two old men died hours after authorities said they had tested positive for coronavirus based on preliminary tests.”

But other sources say the actual death toll is nine, not five. New York Times reporter Farnaz Fassihi flat-out called the Iranian government a bunch of liars on Twitter:

Coronavirus cases increase in Iran. Three in Qom, one in Arak, and five suspected transferred to Tehran. Lack of transparency about how and when virus entered and spreading and why public wasn’t informed earlier is infuriating Iranians afresh.

Iranians are saying they don’t trust public health officials’ statements about coronavirus outbreak. Because? The regime lied and covered up shooting down passenger airplane for three days.

Compounding the anger is Iranian carrier Mahan Airlines still operating flights to and from China with little oversight from public health officials. Long after most countries have suspended flights from China.

Tomorrow are Iran’s elections. In Qom, health officials have warned people to stay away from public spaces. What precautions are officials taking to not spread coronavirus in long lines and finger stamps?

Many Iranians were already planning to sit out the elections. Hopelessness for change and anger over disqualification of reformist candidates, lying about airplane shooting and November killing of hundreds of protestors. Fear from coronavirus could be another excuse to boycott vote.

The brother of one dead coronavirus patient in Qom is a member of Iran’s central medical committee. He disputes government account, says his brother was 60, not elderly and had no existing health issues. He caught the virus in the streets of Qom. He accuses officials of a ‘cover up.’

Qom’s Governor said elections will be held as scheduled. He asked voters to bring their own pens and said polling stations will have masks and disinfectants.

Several more suspected coronavirus cases reported in other cities in Iran. Tehran shut down a potentially contaminated subway station in downtown and Isfahan disinfecting subway stations.”

Iraq has responded to the news by banning all border crossings by Iranians for the next three days. Additionally, the state-run airline, Iraqi Airways, has suspended all fights to Iran. And in Kuwait, the ports authority has suspended all movement of people to or from Iran until further notice.

Meanwhile, the number of cases of coronavirus in South Korea has exploded to more than 100 and officials warn it may have spread to the country’s military.

Dozens of people caught the disease while attending a megachurch in Daegu, the fourth-largest city in the country. After word got out of the “super spreader” incident, the city of 2.5 million people quickly became a ghost town, much like those seen in non-government reports from mainland China

Additionally, a sailor in the South Korean Navy is being checked for a possible coronavirus infection. This has added concerns that the disease has spread to the military barracks just as tensions are building with North Korea—which is suspected of hiding its own coronavirus horror story.

This afternoon, China’s National Health Commission reported the latest “official” numbers from Hubei province, which includes Wuhan, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. There were 411 confirmed cases and 115 deaths, an increase of both numbers compared to Wednesday.

Here are the other coronavirus-related stories we’ve been following:

HONG KONG ‘SUPER SPREADER’

Hong Kong may have just suffered its first “super spreader” event. The city’s police force issued a statement this afternoon announcing that 59 officers have been quarantined after another tested positive for the coronavirus.

BEIJING NOW UNDER ‘WUHAN-LEVEL’ LOCKDOWN

Blogger Jennifer Zeng reports that she was informed second- or third-hand that Beijing has informed Communist Party officials that the capital city’s epidemic prevention status was being raised to “Wuhan level.” This would mean no one can leave their homes unless they are given specific permission to do so. Zeng said she could not independently confirm the rumor, although she has heard it from multiple sources. If true, people are being asked to stock up on food, water, and batteries.

PPEs RUNNING IN SHORT SUPPLY

World Health Organization Tedros Ghebreyesus told reporters that coronavirus numbers may be falling in China, but the outbreak is far from over. If governments don’t take adequate steps to fight the disease, he added, the number of cases outside China “won’t stay low for very long.” Further causing concern, he said he has already been in contact with 12 CEOs at companies that make personal protective equipment to “seek their cooperation to ensure supply to protect health workers.”

ORIGIN DISCOVERED?

NTD News, a New York-based outlet funded by the Falun Gong, reports that a Chinese biologist is challenging the official narrative, claiming the coronavirus is a bioweapon developed at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Wu Xiaohua challenged the Bio-Security Level 4 facility’s director to “answer key questions about the suspicious gene mutations found in the virus.” He also claimed the disease got out due to lax security, saying:

For instance, some researchers in these labs kept the laboratory dogs as pets; some disposed of animal carcasses casually because following the biosafety rules and cremating them costs a lot of money. Some cut up the laboratory pigs and took the meat home to eat. I know this happened at Beijing 301 Hospital’s spine surgery lab. Worst of all, some laboratory animals were sold to wet markets as wild-caught animals for profit.”

(Photo Credit: Reuters/TruNews)


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-health/south-korea-city-deserted-after-coronavirus-super-spreads-through-church-idUSKBN20E0AM


https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/coronavirus-deaths-outside-china-surge-overnight-explosion-new-cases-suggests-outbreak




https://www.trunews.com/stream/coronavirus-26-quarantined-in-their-homes-in-upstate-new-york


Coronavirus outbreak: "I 

was so scared" says 

infectious disease specialist 

on Diamond Princess




Six people were isolated after presenting minor symptoms on arrival at Darwin airport yesterday morning.

The 164 people from the cruise ship will spend two weeks in quarantine at the Howard Springs quarantine centre.

Six New Zealanders were also on board that evacuation flight, and are currently in quaratine at Whangaparaoa air base.

The Ministry of Health said there were no confirmed cases in New Zealand.

The New Zealanders who arrived back home from Diamond Princess are being kept in isolation and are not displaying any signs of the virus.

The Australian government's chief medical officer, Brendan Murphy, says authorities were prepared for positive coronavirus cases from the evacuated cohort.

"Given there was continued evidence of spread of infection on board the Diamond Princess in recent days, the development of some positive cases after return to Australia is not unexpected, despite all of the health screening before departure," he said in a statement.

Murphy said both infected Australians "remained well" and were being quarantined in a separate isolation unit.

A medical evacuation to the home states of both patients and their families is currently being organised by health authorities.

A plane from Tokyo carrying Australian evacuees who had been stranded on the coronavirus-riddled ship arrived in Darwin yesterday morning, just hours before Japanese public broadcaster NHK announced two passengers who had been aboard the cruise ship had died.

"All passengers were health screened before being allowed to leave the ship, none had positive tests or any symptoms of disease," Professor Murphy said.

"They were monitored throughout the flight, screened again at the RAAF Base in Darwin and again on arrival at [Howard Springs].

"Six people were identified as having minor respiratory symptoms and/or fever. They were immediately separated from others at the airport and went directly into isolation at the village.

"Two of those people have since tested positive for COVID-19 infection."


As of Thursday, more than 612 passengers were infected on the ship, including 46 Australians.
https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/world/410048/coronavirus-cases-confirmed-among-australian-diamond-princess-evacuees-in-darwin

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