Grave situation in China as Coronavirus death toll spikes to 80, LNY holidays extended
Beijing : China on Monday extended its Lunar New Year (LNY) holidays in order to contain the fast spreading coronavirus, which has claimed around 80 lives so far with over 2700 people getting affected from it.
Health experts on Sunday claimed that seven-day holiday window for the LNY was critical time as the hundreds of millions of Chinese will begin their return journey home at the end of it.
They said that the possibility of virus getting spread rapidly is stronger now and that it could also infect during the 1 day-to-14 day incubation period.
President Xi Jinping, on the other hand, has termed the rapidly spreading virus as grave situation in the nation.
The government is attempting to spread out the 3 billion trips – by road, air, railways and boats -- expected in connection with the LNY holidays to prevent human-to-human transmission of the highly contagious virus.
“China announced Monday that the Lunar New Year holiday will be extended to February 2 as a measure to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak,” official news agency, Xinhua reported.
The holidays had started on January 24 and were expected to end by January 30
The General Office of the State Council (China’s cabinet) said in an announcement that the measure is taken to effectively reduce mass gatherings, block the spread of the epidemic, and to better safeguard the safety and health of the Chinese people
Universities and schools have been ordered to remain close till further notice.
Tens millions of people in Hubei – along with the locked down capital, Wuhan – are facing transport restrictions, part of the government’s effort to isolate the virus in the region.