India sending medical supplies to China to aid viral fight: envoy

By Lu Wenao Source:Global Times Published: 2020/2/19 0:43:40

Recovered coronavirus patient Cai Taoying (2nd L), who is also a nurse from Hankou Hospital, donates plasma at Wuhan Blood Center in Wuhan, capital of Central China's Hubei Province, Monday. Photo: Xinhua

India is sending medical supplies to China this week to help combat the novel coronavirus epidemic, Indian Ambassador to China Vikram Misri told the Global Times, adding that "India will do everything within its means to support the people of China in this hour of crisis."  

"The Indian Government will be sending medical supplies to aid and assist China in tackling the challenges posed by the epidemic," Misri said in an exclusive text interview with the Global Times. 

"This is a concrete measure which fully demonstrates the goodwill, solidarity and friendship between the peoples and governments of India and China," the Indian senior diplomat said. 

The deadly novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has infected more than 72,000 people and killed nearly 1,900 in China since December 2019.

Unlike some Western countries including the US and Australia who have issued travel bans on Chinese tourists, India has not followed suit.  

"There is no travel ban existing between India and China," he said. 

"However, there have been some travel restrictions imposed in the interest of public health and controlling the spread of the COVID-19 virus."

India had taken early precautionary measures regarding the spread of the COVID-19 virus epidemic, with screening of passengers coming from abroad initiated from January 18, the ambassador said. 

Those travelling from China, and other countries, to India may be subjected to quarantine measures following a medical screening at their point of entry.

"Universal thermal screening has been made mandatory for all flights from China, Singapore, Thailand, South Korea and Japan and these flights will park at earmarked aero-bridges to facilitate the screening," the ambassador noted.

The Indian Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has also issued travel advisories for Indians who wish to travel to China, which are updated regularly based on the evolving situation with regards to the COVID-19 epidemic. Currently it has advised that all non-essential travel to China from India be deferred.

The Indian Embassy in China wrote on its official Sina Weibo account on Sunday that it wishes China could soon rein in the epidemic, and that the world sees China's determination to win this viral fight.

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