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Four Countries Ban Recent Visitors to China, Death Toll Reaches 427

Four Countries Ban Recent Visitors to China, Death Toll Reaches 427

New Zealand, Australia, the Philippines, and the USA are now temporarily refusing entry to non-citizens who have travelled to mainland China in the past 14 days, while the death toll from the coronavirus has risen to 425 in China, one in the Philippines and one in Hong Kong, with reported cases reaching 20,485 in China and 211 in 27 other countries, including Hong Kong and Macau. the latest addition is Belgium. None of the 27 countries reporting cases are in Africa or Central/South America.

The number of people that have recovered from the virus is also increasing and has now reached 730.

Mongolia, Russia and Nepal have closed their land borders with China, while Hong Kong is closing all but two land crossings.

The USA, which now has 11 cases, is denying entry to Chinese nationals, US airlines must ask all passengers booked on flights from outside the USA if they have been in mainland China in the past 14 days, and US citizens who have been in China in the past 14 days must book to arrive at one of seven gateways – New York JFK, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago, Atlanta, or Honolulu.

CLIA has confirmed that cruise ships are now denying boarding to passengers and crew who have travelled from or through mainland China in the past 14 days. They have also cancelled China sailings, including ex-Shanghai, and are altering their Asia itineraries.

Japan has quarantined the Diamond Princess cruise ship carrying 2,666 guests and 1,045 crew off the coast of Yokohama and is testing passengers for the coronavirus, after an 80-year-old passenger who disembarked in Hong Kong tested positive.

In Ireland, the Department of Foreign Affairs travel advice is currently “Avoid non-essential travel” for China and “High degree of caution” for Hong Kong and Macau.

The organisers of IT&CM China and CTW China have decided to defer the 2020 event to 3 – 5 August, subject to the recovery and control of the outbreak. Organisers TTG and China-based CITS MICE will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide further updates when necessary.

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NEIL STEEDMAN has been a trade journalist, editor and proofreader for 53 years, and ITTN's News & Features Editor for 43 years. His travel blog is at www.thetravelbuddhist.com.

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