Increased vigilance needed to prevent spread of Novel coronavirus

By Hu Weijia Source:Global Times Published: 2020/1/22 22:21:44

Illustrations: Peter C. Espina/GT

Anxiety has risen following confirmation that a deadly coronavirus originating in Wuhan, capital of Central China's Hubei Province, can be transmitted human-to-human. People in the city with plans to travel abroad are advised to cancel their trips during the upcoming Spring Festival.

China has thus far confirmed a total of 473 cases of the new form of coronavirus pneumonia. With the country now in its peak season for outbound travel as the Spring Festival approaches, increased vigilance is needed to prevent the virus from spreading further. 

It was originally expected that in excess of 7 million Chinese people would travel overseas during the Spring Festival. Devising measures to halt the spread of the virus will be challenging. 

China has kicked off a campaign to crack down on the spread of the coronavirus, an effort that will require widespread support. People from Wuhan should not travel abroad at this time. Students, workers and tourists currently in Wuhan should also postpone any planned trips to their home countries. 

The US has confirmed its first case of the new coronavirus. The Voice of America reported on Tuesday that US authorities are screening travelers from Wuhan at airports in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. This comes as cases of the new coronavirus have also been reported in other countries including Japan, Thailand and South Korea. More countries are likely to ramp up measures to block the spread of the virus.

Chinese tourists should obey related rules and regulations rolled out by foreign countries when they travel abroad. 

All countries should contribute to the campaign to crack down on the spread of the epidemic. However, steps should be taken to ensure the virus does not become an excuse to discriminate against Chinese people. Chinese embassies and consulates need to pay close attention to protect the legitimate interests of Chinese people in overseas countries.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times.


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