Asia records second wave of coronavirus contagions

From Australia's famous Bondi beach to the streets of New Delhi, authorities across Asia have stepped up efforts this weekend to curb the spread of the coronavirus after a second wave of infections hit regions where it was believed that pandemic was under control.

The second wave of infections is mainly due to people who have returned from abroad.

Singapore, a densely populated city-state, has banned short-stay visitors after a wave of imported cases has brought the total number of infections to 432.

In Hong Kong, where it seemed that the worst was over, the number of infected people almost doubled last week, after many people returned to the territory.

Several countries have adopted measures to restrict displacement, such as Malaysia, which sent its army to impose the confinement of the population.

In Asia, more than 95.000 cases have been reported, that is, one third of the total number of Covid-19 infections worldwide, according to a count by AFP.

Outside of China, where more than 80.000 people have been infected since the first case of the new coronavirus in Wuhan last December, South Korea is the hardest hit country in Asia, with more than 8.500 cases.

In China, the number of cases has decreased in recent weeks, but in other countries, it has increased.

- Strong increase in Thailand -

Thailand registered a sudden increase on Sunday with 188 new cases, raising doubts about the figures reported by its neighbors, Myanmar and Laos, who have not confirmed any cases.

The Kingdom of Southeast Asia now accounts for 599 reported cases, compared with 114 on March 15.

This clear deterioration in the situation led the government to take a series of measures.

After schools, sports facilities, bars and other entertainment venues in Bangkok were closed, the authorities decided to close the city's numerous shopping centers by April 12, in addition to beauty salons, among other places.

Australia, which has closed its borders to non-residents and foreigners, has 1.300 cases in its territory and has asked its citizens to avoid moving within the country.

In turn, Pakistan, where there would be 300 cases of coronavirus, has suspended all its international flights.

Millions of Indians were subjected on Sunday to an experimental national curfew to combat the pandemic, which has already caused more than 13.000 deaths worldwide.

The country, with 1,3 billion inhabitants, has increased detection tests and the number of cases, currently 320, is believed to be undervalued.

The World Health Organization (WHO) urged the countries of Southeast Asia to wage a “violent” fight against the epidemic, fearing that it will eventually collapse the very deficient health systems.

Source: AFP.

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