(NEW YORK) — Major cities are shutting down restaurants, bars, gyms and schools to try to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, which has killed at least 85 people in the United States.
There are at least 4,661 confirmed cases in the country. COVID-19 has reached 49 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico.
Globally, there are more than 181,580 coronavirus cases and more than 7,130 deaths, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.
Here’s how the news is unfolding Tuesday. All times Eastern:
5:21 a.m. China’s Foreign Ministry says Trump “Chinese Virus” tweet a “smear”
China Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang, not mentioning President Donald Trump by name, called the tweet “a smear” and that China “expresses its strong anger and opposition to that.”
“Some politicians in the U.S. associated the coronavirus with China, and smeared China. China expresses its strong anger and opposition to that,” Shuang said on Tuesday. “We call on the U.S. to stop finger pointing at China. The utmost priority is for the international community to cooperate on fighting the virus. The U.S. should focus on its top priority, and play a constructive role in international cooperation on health security.”
5:00 a.m. Russia mobilizes to shield economy from impact of coronavirus
With a total of 93 recorded cases so far, Russia’s government is moving to prepare a broad spectrum of measures to try to shield the country’s economy from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.
In addition to a $4 billion support fund, the state will also increase state guarantees for some companies by enlarging the list of firms deemed strategically important. It is looking at delaying tax payments, as well as penalties for businesses, as well as short-term loans. The Russian rouble currency has strengthened in response to some of the announcements.
Russia’s foreign ministry has also called on the U.S. to lift sanctions on Iran that it says are preventing it from combating the coronavirus outbreak effectively. Iran has recently said it is suffering from a shortage of key medical equipment and medicines needed due to the sanctions imposed as part of the U.S.’ “maximum pressure” campaign. Russia’s foreign ministry has accused the U.S. of putting millions of Iranians at risk and called on it to lift them immediately and end its “inhuman policy”.
3:57 a.m. Dutch Prime Minister announces opposition to nationwide lockdown, calls it “impractical”
The Netherlands will not impose a national lockdown over coronavirus because it would have to be in place for too long to make a difference, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on TV on Monday.
“It wouldn’t be a matter of days or weeks. In that scenario, we would actually have to shut down our country for a year, or even longer, with all the consequences that follow,” he added.
1:10 a.m. San Francisco Police Department going door to door to make sure bars and clubs are complying with public health order
The San Francisco Police Department tweeted that they would be visiting bars and clubs throughout the city to make sure they are in compliance with the city’s public heath order.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom issued the directive to shut down all of the state’s bars, clubs, breweries and taprooms on Sunday when he announced the virus had killed six people in California.
“These are profoundly significant steps and they are significant steps from two days ago,” Newsom said in a news conference. “We’re guided deeply by what’s happening, not just by anxiety, not just by fear, but by a very pragmatic response to meet this moment without creating other unintended consequences.”
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