Videos show Chinese officials using force to quarantine residents

In this Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020, photo, a medical worker in a protective suit walks by patients who diagnosed with the coronaviruses settle at a temporary hospital which transformed from an exhibition center in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei province. (Chinatopix via AP)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 11:48 AM PT — Sunday, February 9, 2020

The Chinese government has come under fire for allegedly using excessive force to quarantine areas affected by the coronavirus outbreak. New videos showed Chinese officials breaking into homes and taking people into isolation by force.

The disturbing footage has sparked concerns that China could be using the epidemic as a pretext to detain dissidents and critics of the regime. Beijing reported 11 million people have been quarantined in and around the city of Wuhan so far.

The UN warned against potential human rights violations amid the virus outbreak.

“All of a sudden, people that have nothing to do with it are stigmatized for any reasons,” stated UN Secretary General António Guterres. “So, I think it’s important to keep the very strong human rights perspective in the way the international community deals with the coronavirus.”

Chinese officials have said they are asking residents in certain areas to self-quarantine for 14 days. They claimed they are only detaining the violators.

Passengers from the cruise ship “World Dream” docked at Kai Tak cruise terminal, wave to family members on shore in Hong Kong, Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Meanwhile, the Chinese ambassador to the U.S. denied claims that Beijing is refusing to cooperate with the U.S. on battling the coronavirus. On Sunday, Ambassador Cui Tiankai said China would welcome CDC experts’ help in researching the virus.

Tiankai argued it is still not clear what the virus is and how it affects people. His remarks came amid allegations of a potential government cover-up of the true scale of the coronavirus pandemic.

The ambassador added China is working with the international community to prevent the spread of coronavirus and curb the outbreak.

“We are coordinating with the World Health Organization, because a lot of things are done under the auspices of the World Health Organization,” said Tiankai. “We certainly welcome American experts to join the actual group, the assembly.”

He also rejected criticism of alleged human rights abuses in the province of Xinjiang and reiterated Beijing’s claims of battling Islamic terror there.

Elderly men sit at a park wearing face masks in Hong Kong, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Original Article

Pentagon approves military facilities to quarantine citizens possibly exposed to coronavirus

Secretary of Defense Mark Esper speak during a news conference at the Pentagon in Washington, Monday, Jan. 27, 2020, with French Minister of Armed Forces Florence Parly. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 7:28 AM PT — Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Defense Secretary Mark Esper has approved the use of four military bases to quarantine up to 1,000 people posing coronavirus health risks. The request by the Department of Health and Human Services was approved over the weekend.

This comes after Chinese health officials reported more than 420 deaths and over 20,000 confirmed cases of the virus, constituting an increase of nearly 3,000 cases within a 24-hour period.

Each military base will reportedly provide housing for at least 250 people through the end of February.

“The DOD will only provide housing support, while HHS will remain responsible for all care, transportation and security of these individuals,” explained Jonathan Hoffman, a spokesperson for the Pentagon. “DOD personnel will not be in direct contact with these individuals, nor will these individuals have access to the base facilities beyond the housing.”

Carrying some 240 American diplomats and citizens, a Boeing 747 aircraft sits on the tarmac of Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport in Anchorage, Alaska Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020. Chartered by the U.S. government, the plane flew from Wuhan, China, the source of the recent coronavirus outbreak. (AP Photo/Michael Dinneen)

In the meantime, a presidential order has temporarily barred some foreigners from the visiting the U.S. Additionally, Americans who visited China within the last two weeks will be screened at select ports of entry.

Safety measures can also include 14 days of quarantine to ensure individuals do not pose a public health risk.

RELATED: Goldman Sachs estimates modest hit to 2020 global growth from coronavirus

Original Article

Hong Kong protesters set fire to building intended as coronavirus quarantine site

First aid volunteers try to extinguish a fire set by local residents at a building of the Fai Ming Estate, in Fanling district of Hong Kong, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020, after the Hong Kong government announced it would requisition the unoccupied housing project to house quarantined patients of the new viral coronavirus illness. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 2:20 PM PT — Sunday, January 26, 2020

Hong Kong protesters have set fire to a newly constructed residential building, which the government was planning to use to address the coronavirus outbreak. Reports revealed about 200 protesters gathered near the building and set the fire on Sunday.

Firefighters and riot police arrived soon after. The damage appeared to be confined mostly to the lobby.

This is what #HongKongRioters have done to Fai Ming Estate in Fanling. #coronavirus pic.twitter.com/5a6Te6AVQh

— Angela LaaLaa (@AngieFuego) January 26, 2020

Protesters said they were opposed to the building being used as a quarantine zone, due to its close proximity to a school and the city’s main residential area.

“Our message is very simple: Don’t make the Fai Ming Estate into a quarantine area, as there are lots of local residents here,” said one protester.

Local residents struggle with riot police at the Fai Ming Estate, in Fanling district of Hong Kong, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020, after the Hong Kong government announced it would requisition an unoccupied housing project to house quarantined patients of the new viral coronavirus illness. Residents took the streets on Sunday night to oppose the plan to house quarantined patients or medical workers in their neighbourhood, that is far from Hong Kong’s busy business centres. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

Hong Kong authorities said nearly 80 locals were believed to be infected, but only six cases have been confirmed so far. The government has raised its response to emergency levels, closing schools and suspending flights in the region.

RELATED: Two Cases Of Coronavirus Confirmed In Calif.

Original Article