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Coronavirus Pandemic: China lifting lockdown of Hubei province


The Latest on the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected over 381,000 people and killed over 16,500. The COVID-19 illness causes mild or moderate symptoms in the general public, but severe symptoms are more likely within the elderly or those with existing health problems. over 101,000 people have recovered thus far, mostly in China.

BEIJING — Chinese authorities are lifting the tight lockdown of Hubei province that was imposed to halt the spread of the new coronavirus.

People who are cleared to try and do so are going to be able to leave the province after midnight Tuesday.

The city of Wuhan, where the outbreak started in late December, will remain locked down until April 8. China barred people from leaving or entering Wuhan starting Jan. 23 and expanded it to most of the province in succeeding days.

CANBERRA, Australia — Prisoners considered susceptible to the new coronavirus and low risk to society in Australia’s most populous state would be eligible for early parole under emergency legislation being introduced to the New South Wales Parliament.

It is unclear what percentage of the state’s 14,000 prisoners could walk free under the legislation proposed by New South Wales Attorney General Mark Speakman.

The emergency legislation includes a raft of reforms that Speakman said will provide public authorities with the powers they have to reply appropriately to the present once-in-a-century crisis.

“The threat posed by COVID-19 is rapidly evolving, and also the needs of families, businesses, workers and governments are changing a day,” Speakman said during a statement.

A provincial education minister in Pakistan’s southern Sindh province says he has tested positive for the coronavirus, although he didn't visit any hospital where infected persons are being treated.

Saeed Ghani urged people to follow the policy of social distancing to avoid the disease. He said he still had no symptoms of the infection and he has isolated himself reception.

Ghani’s appeal came after authorities in Pakistan imposed a lockdown to contain the spread of the new coronavirus.

The lockdown also has been extended to Pakistan’s a part of disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir after an individual was tested positive there.

Roads in many parts of Pakistan were deserted as police and troops started keeping people aloof from streets.


WASHINGTON — Top congressional and White House officials negotiating the $2 trillion coronavirus rescue package say they expect to succeed in a deal sometime Tuesday.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer say they spoke by phone with President Donald Trump as they met late into the night at the Capitol. While the edges have resolved many issues within the sweeping package, some disagreements remain.

Washington has been straining to reply to the worsening coronavirus outbreak, and tempers in Congress have flared now and then. Meantime, Trump is musing openly about letting a 15-day shutdown expire next Monday.

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