ASEAN: The entire crew on the Westerdam cruise ship were tested for the virus; luckily, no one was reported to have COVID-19, except for its former passenger, who tested positive for the coronavirus while transiting through Malaysia. No other countries in the region reported new cases of COVID-19.

ASIA: South Korea reported its second fatality from the virus—a woman born in 1965. The first patient in South Korea to die from COVID-19 had a chronic lung disease and was hospitalized for a long period of time. The country’s military administration said they will suspend the conscription examinations in the southern city of Daegu city and surrounding North Gyeongsang Province after a mass outbreak of the virus there—the country reported a staggering 94 new cases. Some have connections with the Shincheonji group. South Korean authorities Thursday were seeking to question more than 1,000 members of the religious group who went to a service with one of the recently confirmed cases. The disembarkation of passengers from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan has begun and will continue through Saturday, said CNN. A total of 253 people who tested negative for COVID-19 on the ship will be quarantined again for 14 days. Lebanon announced its first confirmed case of COVID-19 in the country, a 45-year-old female who returned from the city of Qom in Iran. There are two more suspected cases but they are yet to be confirmed as positive. All passengers returning to Lebanon from Iran will now be placed under home quarantine for 14 days. Israel announced the first case of coronavirus in the country after a woman who was evacuated from the Diamond Princess in Japan was diagnosed with the disease, the Ministry said in a statement Friday morning. All passengers are being held in isolation at Sheba Medical Center near Tel Aviv. They will remain in the hospital for 14 days. Iran reported thirteen new cases and two deaths, bringing the country total to 18 confirmed cases and four fatalities. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) confirmed two additional cases of the virus, raising the countrywide tally to 11 cases. No other countries in the region reported new cases of COVID-19.

EUROPE: In Ukraine, several people got injured after protesters attacked a bus with Ukrainian citizens and foreigners who had been evacuated from Wuhan, China. The Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs noted that nine police officers and one civilian sustained injuries from the attack by the “aggressive citizens”, who were throwing stones on buses, trying to hit the police with a car. One officer was seriously injured in the incident. Ukraine has not confirmed any cases of COVID-19 in the country. No other countries in the region reported new cases of COVID-19.

AMERICA: The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that US will now track confirmed cases in two ways—patients evacuated by the US and those identified by the US public health network. Incidents of racial discrimination amidst the COVID-19 outbreak have been reported in different parts of the United States. In New York City, a man attacked a woman in a face mask, calling her a “diseased b****”. In Los Angeles, a man said that Chinese people were “filthy” and said “every disease has ever came from China”. Misinformation and ignorance about the coronavirus is causing people to lash out in xenophobic attacks against their fellow man. The US reported 20 new cases of the virus, raising the country total to 35. Canada has also reported a new confirmed case, a woman in her 30s who had recent travel history to Iran. The country now has a total of nine cases. The largest group of Canadians confirmed infected with COVID-19—47 in total—are on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan.

AUSTRALIA: With the addition of two new casesAustralia’s case count is at 19 cases. Meanwhile, New Zealand has not confirmed any cases of COVID-19 in the country.



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