The government yesterday implemented a level 3 “warning” travel advisory on all countries, while the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) reported 27 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the nation’s total of confirmed cases to 135.
The center also reported the nation’s second death, a man in his 80s in northern Taiwan.
The man had high blood pressure, diabetes and kidney disease, and despite being treated with anti-HIV and anti-malaria drugs, he died of complications due to blood poisoning, center advisory specialist panel convener Chang Shan-chwen (張上淳) said.
Among the 27 new cases, 24 had returned to Taiwan between March 6 and Wednesday from Austria, Belgium, Canada, Egypt, France, Germany, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, the Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Turkey, the UK and the US, the center said, adding that eight of them had traveled to more than one country.
The 24 people — all of whom are Taiwanese except for one American man in his 40s — break down into 15 women and nine men, with the youngest being a teenager and the oldest over 80, center data showed.
Although age is one factor affecting a person’s likelihood of contracting COVID-19, there are other factors such as personal immunity and contact history, Chang said, when asked if the hypothesis that elderly people are more likely to contract the coronavirus should be re-examined.
The remaining three cases — two women and one man — were infected locally and are the 124th, 130th and 134th cases.
The 124th case, a man in his 30s, did not travel abroad recently, but had contact with his company supervisor, who exhibited symptoms after returning from the US last week, the center said.
Two of his foreign colleagues also exhibited symptoms earlier this week and health authorities are monitoring their status, the center added.
The 130th case, a female teenager, is a classmate of the 59th and the 103rd cases in a senior-high school in northern Taiwan, it said.
The school suspended all classes from yesterday through Friday next week, the Ministry of Education has said.
The 134th case did not travel abroad recently, and relatives in the same house have so far not shown symptoms, the center said, adding that it would investigate who she came into contact with at work to clarify the source of her infection.
The level 3 advisory, which previously had been applied to 101 countries and territories, covering virtually all of Europe and Asia, has been extended to reflect the global spread of the coronavirus, including Latin America, Africa and Oceania, the center said.
The center had already mandated a 14-day home quarantine for all travelers arriving in Taiwan and a ban on the entry of foreign nationals, with some exceptions, under tightened border controls that took effect on Thursday, minimizing the effects of the new advisories.
According to CECC regulations, travelers who make unnecessary trips to an area under a level 3 advisory may not apply for the government’s NT$1,000 daily home quarantine subsidy.
Additional reporting by CNA
CAUTION: Taiwanese should be alert, even if they have just liked or shared posts that would breach Beijing’s national security legislation for Hong Kong, the council said Due to the newly implemented Hong Kong national security legislation, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) has drawn up a list of what it described as “high-risk groups,” cautioning them not to travel to Hong Kong. People who support independence for Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tibet and Xinjiang; those who are critical of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the Hong Kong government and the “one country, two systems” concept; and those who donated to or voiced support for the Hong Kong anti-extradition bill movement are urged to refrain from visiting Hong Kong, the council said on its Web site. It released two posts on
HONG KONG SECURITY: The president blasted regulations requiring Taiwanese agents or political organizations to provide information on their Hong Kong-related activities President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday warned of countermeasures should controversial Chinese national security legislation imposed on Hong Kong undermine or harm Taiwanese interests. Article 43 of the legislation empowers the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to serve written notices to Taiwanese political organizations or individual agents to furnish information on their Hong Kong-related activities, including their personal particulars, finances, assets, expenditure and capital in the territory. Failure to comply or providing false or incomplete information can result in a fine of HK$100,000 (US$12,903) or imprisonment of six months or two years respectively. Tsai said that Taiwan would keep a close watch on how
NEW HONG KONG LAW: A visit to Beijing-friendly nations or those with weak judicial systems could leave people at risk of deportation to China, a former MAC official said Beijing could request countries with which it has extradition agreements to deport Taiwanese to China to face criminal charges following the implementation of national security legislation for Hong Kong, a former Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) official warned yesterday. Some developing countries, and those close to China because of the Belt and Road Initiative, are likely to accommodate Beijing’s requests to extradite Taiwanese to China, said former deputy MAC minister Chen Ming-chi (陳明祺), who served from July 2, 2018, until May 20, and then returned to his former post as an assistant professor of sociology at National Tsing Hua University. While Taiwanese
MORAL COURAGE: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged the global community to face China’s intention to subdue Taiwan and reject such irrational requests The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday strongly condemned the Chinese government for meddling with US officials’ interactions with Taiwan after FBI Director Christopher Wray revealed China’s efforts to discourage US officials from visiting Taiwan. The greatest long-term threat to the US’ information security and intellectual property, as well as its economic vitality, is China’s counterintelligence and economic espionage operations, Wray told a video event at the Hudson Institute in Washington. Beijing is engaged in a highly sophisticated and maligning foreign influence campaign, with methods that include bribery, blackmail and covert deals, he said. Giving an example, Wray said that when a US official