China reports no COVID-19 deaths for first time

An officer of Shanghai Customs wearing a protective suit checks a health declaration card of an inbound passenger at Shanghai Pudong International Airport among fresh concerns that Italians and Iranians are bringing the virus to the city now. (Photo by Yin Liqin/China News Service via Getty Images)

Beijing, April 7 (IANS) China reported no coronavirus deaths on Tuesday, the first time since it started publishing daily figures in January following the emergence of the virus in Wuhan city last December, according to the country’s National Health Commission.

The Commission said it had 32 confirmed cases, down from 39 on Monday, reports the BBC.

All of the confirmed cases were imported, it added.

Total number of coronavirus cases in China as of Tuesday was 82,697, while the death toll stood at 3,335.

Although other countries like the US and Italy have surpassed China in terms of both cases and deaths, the Asian giant was concerned that a second wave of infections could be brought in by foreign arrivals.

It has already shut its border to foreigners including those with visas or residence permits, the BBC reported.

International flights have been reduced with both Chinese and foreign airlines only allowed to operate one international flight a week.

Flights must not be more than 75 per cent full, according to the government.

On Wednesday, Wuhan, where the pandemic originated in December 2019, is set to allow people to leave the city for the first time since the lockdown began on January 23.

Officials have said that who has a “green” code on a widely used smartphone health app will be allowed to leave the city.

Some people in “epidemic-free” residential compounds have already been allowed to leave their homes for two hours.

But Wuhan officials revoked the “epidemic-free” status in 45 compounds because of the emergence of asymptomatic cases and for other unspecified reasons.

Asymptomatic refers to someone who is carrying the virus but experiencing no symptoms.

China began reporting asymptomatic cases at the beginning of April. More than 1,033 asymptomatic patients are under medical observation.

With a total of 368,376 confirmed coronavirus cases, the US on Tuesday accounted for the highest number of infections in the world. Its death toll stood at 10,993, according to figures by the Washington-based Johns Hopkins University.

Italy has the highest death toll globally with 16,523 fatalities, while in terms of infections it was the third highest with 132,547 confirmed cases.

Spain ranked second highest in terms of both deaths and confirmed cases at 13,341 and 136,675, respectively.

 

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