01/30/2021, 13.13
VIETNAM
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Hanoi, Covid-19 also affects the Communist Party Congress

by Thanh Thao

Congress session reduced by one day. Quảng Ninh International Airport closed for 15 days. The city of Chí Linh in lockdown. Concern about the spread of the virus through "foreign workers" and factory workers. Premier Nguyen Xuan Phuc has promised that Vietnam will have the vaccine by the first quarter of 2021. AstraZeneca vaccine approved today.

Hanoi (AsiaNews) - A new wave of infections in the north of the country, in the Hà Nội - Hải Phòng - Quảng Ninh triangle, has forced the leadership of the Communist Party to reduce the Congress session, which is taking place in the capital, by one day.

Until a few days ago, the containment of the coronavirus had been successful in Vietnam. Thanks to mass testing and quarantine programs (photo 1), the toll has reached 1739 cases in one year and 35 deaths. But in recent days there have been 105 new cases, all in the Northern Triangle, which prompted the authorities to close the Quảng Ninh international airport (photo 2) and the city of Chí Linh (Hải Dương province). The airport will be closed for two weeks; the city of Chí Linh (photo 3), with 146,752 inhabitants, will suffer the lockdown: people are only allowed to leave their homes to buy food, medicine, other emergency materials, or to go to work.

On December 27, the People’s Committee of the Hải Dương province asked the province’s Health Department to stop the entry of all "foreign workers" and to force them to quarantine in hotels in the province.

Since the virus is feared to spread very quickly, the Ministry of Health has asked the province to start building "field hospitals" to accommodate a probable growing number of patients.

In Chí Linh, the source of the virus was traced to the Poyun electronics factory (photo 4). According to Nguyễn Thanh Long, Minister of Health, from the factory the virus can easily spread everywhere because "the workers work in shifts and when they finish, they return to their dormitories or to their homes in the province".

The Minister of Health reports that today there were still 32 new infections in Hải Dương and 2 in the province of Quảng Ninh.

At the Party Congress, Premier Nguyen Xuan Phuc promised that Vietnam will have the vaccine by the first quarter of 2021. Following these claims, the Ministry of Health approved the AstraZeneca vaccine today. The government plans to procure at least 30 million doses.

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