GLOBAL GOOD NEWS - 19. March 2019: China has reported no new locally transmitted coronavirus cases for the first time since the pandemic began, marking a major turning point in the global battle to contain SARS-CoV-2. At a news conference on Thursday morning, officials from China's National Health Commission announced there had been just 34 new cases in the past 24 hours -- all imported from overseas. Italy has now more fatal cases due to COVID-19 recorded than China. Get your country updates from HERE or HERE

The latest figures as the pandemic spreads

The countries affected, the number of deaths and the economic impact

The man-made virus has spread throughout the whole world, but neither panic nor ignorance are warranted.
© AFP/FT montage

By FT - 19. March 2020

The humanitarian costs of the coronavirus outbreak continue to mount, with more than 239,000 people infected globally. The number of people confirmed to have died as a result of the virus has now surpassed 9,900. 

The virus’s proliferation has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, meaning it is spreading rapidly in different parts of the world. More than 150 countries have confirmed cases so far. 

The epicentre of the coronavirus is now Europe, with the largest number of confirmed cases in Italy, and death tolls growing more quickly in Italy and Spain than they did in China at the same stage of the outbreak.

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In most western countries case numbers have been increasing by about 33 per cent a day, a sign that other countries may soon be facing the same challenge as Italy.

The Asian city-state of Singapore and the territory of Hong Kong are on a different trajectory in terms of the growth in case numbers. The rate of increase has so far been relatively contained through rapid and strict measures.

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There have now been at least 100 confirmed cases recorded in 60 countries around the world.

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The FT is mapping the virus and its economic impact as it spreads. Check back for our up-to-date figures.

For coverage on the novel coronavirus and up-to-date graphics please visit ft.com/coronavirus-latest

The data for this map comes from a dashboard maintained by the Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science Engineering, which has combined data from the World Health Organization, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the Chinese Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It also incorporates data from the Chinese medical community website DXY, which aggregates live situation reports from the Chinese National Health Commission and local CCDC. Case numbers have now passed 100 in 26 European countries. The region now accounts for 75% of new daily cases.

Map showing the coronavirus situation in Europe. For coverage on the novel coronavirus and up-to-date graphics, please visit ft.com/coronavirus-latest

The Financial Times China Economic Activity Index China's slowdown due to the coronavirus outbreak has been pronounced and consequential for the global economy.

In order to track these changes, the Financial Times has constructed its own measure of the slowdown and nascent recovery in the Chinese economy. 

Chart showing Covid-19's impct on the Chinese economy. FT China Economic Activity index.

 

Official data lags behind activity since it is mostly monthly, and China’s data is sometimes viewed as open to political manipulation.

Using Wind’s financial database, we have compiled a weighted index of six daily, industry-based data series. The measures of the domestic economy include real estate floor space sales, traffic congestion within cities, and coal consumption in major power plants.

Chart showing Covid-19's impact on the Chinese economy. Subindices that make up the FT China Economic Activity index.

 

Trade activity is represented by container freight.  Two other indices, which have been given a lesser weighting, provide social and environmental context: box office numbers from Chinese cinemas - a good proxy on consumer activity - and air pollution in the ten largest cities.

Countries affected by the coronavirus - click HERE

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Ten Questions for the U.S.: Where did the Novel Coronavirus Come From?

By Wang Fuhua - 21. March 2020

Given that some major U.S. media and politicians made groundless claims that the novel coronavirus originates in China, blamed and slandered China, even asked for an apology from China, then I have every reason to ask 10 questions for the United States about its origin too. Better still, unlike the U.S., I did a lot homework and will base my questions on international media coverage of COVID-19.

- emphasis added -

Question 1

Since the director of the U.S. Centers of Disease Control, Robert Redfield admitted that some Americans seemingly dying from flu were tested positive for the novel coronavirus, can I conclude that those people actually died from the novel coronavirus? Among the 34 million influenza patients, with a death toll of 20,000, how many were misdiagnosed?

When did the misdiagnoses start? And did it actually start from August 2019? These questions are so vital that the world is waiting for an explanation from the United States.

Question 2

When there were some misdiagnoses admitted by U.S. CDC, I’m scratching my head – isn’t the U.S. that owns the best medical technologies in the world? Why did that happen?

As the ground glass opacity (white patches) can be easily seen in CT scans of the lungs of patients with the novel coronavirus-infected pneumonia, it should have been an easy thing to separate the cases of COVID-19 and H1N1 flu. But why were there so many misdiagnoses?

Well, that reminds me of the U.S. Vice President Mike Pence’s request of controlling all messaging regard to the coronavirus. Why does the White House call for messaging control? Does the U.S. need to hide something? Are they plotting some conspiracy?

Director of the U.S. CDC Robert Redfield (front) speaks during a press conference on the coronavirus at the White House in Washington D.C., U.S., March 4, 2020. /Xinhua

Question 3

Why did the U.S. withdraw from the 1972 Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) in 2001? Why did it try to prevent a monitoring mechanism for the execution of the Convention? Is it standing in the way of developing biological weapon for the U.S.?

If not, why are there new biological laboratories in Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan? Are those labs for biochemical warfare? It’s impossible that they are keeping viruses as pets. If the U.S. is aiming at provoking a biochemical war, who would be the first target then?

Also, how about the swine flu outbreak in China last year? The odd thing is that it broke out in different places simultaneously instead of breaking out separately. Why were drones used to poison the pigs? Was the U.S. behind all that? I heard that it was the pork speculators. But that theory makes no sense – since the swine flu killed millions of pigs in China during the same period of time, pork speculators would suffer great loss instead of profits.

The best possible answer to that was foreign meddling. I was among those who wondered if the U.S. had anything to do with that and hoped for an explanation.

Question 4

The U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, located on Fort Detrick, Maryland, was shut down in July 2019. Was it because there was a virus leakage incident?

Just one month later, there was an influenza outbreak across the country. Were those two things related in any way?

Were the misdiagnoses simply cooked up to cover up such secrets? Did that also become a motive for the U.S. to shift the blame to other countries by labeling them as the origin of the novel coronavirus?

Was that an epic coincidence or a dirty secret in disguise? Why did the U.S. erase huge number of English news reports on the internet covering the shutdown in March 2020? Is there anything to hide, or is there anything to worry about?

Question 5

At the 7th Military World Games (October 18-27, 2019) held in Wuhan, why did the U.S. team (369 members) win ZERO gold medal? Did that even look like a reasonable record for the world’s leading military power? Did your government do it on purpose?

Was anyone among the 369 participants ever (mis)diagnosed with influenza? Was it possible they were carriers of the novel coronavirus?

The best thing for the U.S. now is to stop burying its head in the sand and give the 369 people PCT tests to see if they are infected.

Question 6

Why did the U.S. hold Event 201, a global pandemic exercise in October 2019? Why was the CIA deputy director participating it? Is it because the U.S. has foreseen a highly-infectious virus is about to cause a pandemic? One month later, cases of pneumonia of unknown cause were detected in China and there was a pandemic three months later. Probably, it’s not just a coincidence.

Question 7

Japan, South Korea, Italy and Iran all reported that many of their first COVID-19 confirmed cases had no exposure history with China but showed connection with the United States. How come?

Genetic research shows that the type of novel coronavirus found in China belongs to Group C, but Group A and Group B viruses – Group C’s parental and grand parental viruses – are both found in the United States. Why? A Japanese patient was diagnosed with influenza in Hawaii but was tested positive for COVID-19 when he returned to Japan. How to explain that?

Some COVID-19 cases in the U.S. had no connection with China whatsoever. So where does it come from?

Question 8

You’ve got no reason to deny that the 1918 Pandemic originated within your territory. But you let Spain bear the blame for as long as a century. Don’t you feel shame on that?

History seems to repeat itself. So, is the U.S. playing the trick again and attempting to label the novel coronavirus as the “Chinese Virus”?

Question 9

The 1918 Pandemic, causing 1 billion infections, with a death toll “estimated to have been anywhere from 17 million to 50 million, and possibly as high as 100 million… one of the deadliest epidemics in human history,” according to wikipedia, was proven originating in the U.S., but the U.S. has never apologized to the world.

So far, the origin of the novel coronavirus is still unknown, but the United States is requiring China for an apology, how ridiculous is that! Just to remind the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic killing 300,000 people also originated in the U.S., and also the same for HIV AIDS. So why not confess to the world?

Question 10

In movies, the U.S. is fond of playing the role of the world savior. The image of Captain America is one of its most popular symbols. However, in reality, in the face of a disaster like COVID-19, where is Captain America?

The U.S. is not doing enough to protect its citizens at home or on the Diamond Princess cruise ship. It even attempted to make Japan responsible for Americans on Diamond Princess. How does the U.S. have the brass to do all these and accuse China of being irresponsible?

While China bought the world valuable time to battle COVID-19, the U.S. accused China of being passive and lacking transparency. Well, when the White House instructed the CDC to stop tallying the people tested for novel coronavirus, did that count as transparency?

When the U.S. government advised its people not to wear masks, was it not being passive? Just too many questions call for the U.S.’s explanations.

The original source of this article is CGN - Copyright © A Al Qod’s A AtwanTWAN, CGN, 2020

CGTN Editor’s note: The article is an edited version of an article which was first published on a WeChat official account named Gong Yi Kan Shi Jie. The article reflects the author’s opinions and not necessarily the views of CGTN.

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Coronavirus prepared at the bio-weapons laboratory in the US

The SARS-CoV-2 virus may have originated at the Fort Detrick lab, escaped into the wild due to lax safety precautions and infected military personnel at the base.

20. March 2020

US expert Dennis Etler shared his views with Eurasia Diary regarding the spread of Coronavirus-COVID-19 in the world as well as the role of the United States in the origination of this terrible disease.  

"Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson has raised the question as to whether the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) actually originated in the US, not China. His suggestion has raised hackles in the US media and government. Zhao, however, has not accused Washington of launching a bio-weapon attack against China, he has just raised some pertinent questions that need to be answered.

Using a contagious virus as a bio-weapon makes no strategic sense. It would and obviously did backfire if the intent was to derail China's economy. In the long-run it will do the exact opposite, it will ruin the Western economies and strengthen China's economy. The modelers in the "deep state” would surely understand this. The logic of launching a viral attack creating a pandemic thus doesn't make much strategic sense.

But there is countervailing evidence that the virus itself had its origins outside of China;

1) In August 2019 the bio-weapons lab at Fort Detrick was shut down because of safety concerns. One of the special agents being researched there was the SARS-CoV coronavirus. It seems that waste water from the plant was contaminated. So, there is a potential source for a SARS-CoV coronavirus (the COVID-19 virus is SARS-CoV-2) that may have escaped into the wild and infected military personnel.

2) Soon thereafter, in October 2019, US military personnel participated in the International Military Games held in Wuhan. It is feasible that some of the roughly 300 US military participating in the games may have been infected with the virus.

3) Genetic evidence shows that the ancestral form of the virus is not found in China but has been found in the USA and Europe.

4) Reports indicate that US military stationed in Afghanistan have had COVID-19-like symptoms but have not been tested for it, suggeting that early carriers of the virus may have mistaken it for the flu since young, healthy military personnel would most likely have very mild or asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 that went unrecognized. This would be particularly true before the disease spread into Wuhan and infected more vulnerable people who got severe symptoms.

5) The US has been very secretive about the outbreak and held classified White House meetings that medical specialists did not attend, because they lacked security clearances, suggesting the intelligence service attendees knew more than they have let on about the virus..

6) On Nov. 18, 2019 a conference on preparations for a coronavirus pandemic (EVENT 201) was held in New York attended by private and public figures. Nonetheless, Washington has feigned total ignorance of the potential for any impending pandemic.

There are other unsubstantiated claims that have circulated on-line, but that doesn't take away from the evidence discussed above.

The conclusion seems to be that the SARS-CoV-2 virus may have originated at the Fort Detrick lab, escaped into the wild due to lax safety precautions and infected military personnel at the base. The virus then spread within the military, mutated into a number of haplotypes and was introduced to Wuhan during the International Military Games,

No conspiracy, but typical lax security and poor procedures by the US military that led to the virus being spread in Wuhan, leading to the local epidemic and the subsequent global pandemic.

The above evidence should not be dismissed out of hand, as it should be read and investigated by a neutral international team of forensic experts."

Author:

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Dennis Etler is an expert on Chinese Studies. Mr Etler holds a doctorate in anthropology from the University of California, Berkley. He conducted archaeological and anthropological research in China throughout the 1980s and 1990s and taught at the college and university level for over 35 years. Source; EurasiaDiary ©  @Eurasia_Eng