Tongan sport trainees in China to return home; PM says they are ‘safe’ amid coronavirus outbreak

    'E foki hifo ki Tonga 'i he uike kaha'u' 'a e fānau ako sipoti Tonga 'oku nau lolotonga 'i Siaina. 'Oku 'i ai mo e fanau ako Tonga 'oku nau 'i he vahefonua Wuhan pea fakatatau ki he 'Eiki Palēmia', 'oku tokanga'i lelei kinautolu mo malu pe. Ko e vahefonua 'eni 'o Siaina 'oku lolotonga tō ai 'a e mahaki faka'auha kuo 'iloa ko e vailasi Coronavirus

    Tonga’s sport team who were currently training in China were preparing to return to the kingdom next week, the Prime Minister said in a statement today.

    He described the condtion of Tongans and Tongan students in Wuhan, China as safe “tu’unga hao.”

    Wuhan is the epicentre of the deadly coronavirus outbreak which is continuing to spread throughout China.

    Hon Pōhiva Tu’i’onetoa said the Tongan ambassador in Beijing has confirmed the students were all cared for and healthy.

    The Prime Minister said he has talked to the Chinese Ambassador in Nuku’alofa and the Tongan Ambassador in Beijing to make sure the sport team were safe before they will arrive in Tonga.

    In Tongan the Prime Minister said: “Pea kuo fai e talanga mo e ‘amipasitoa ‘o Siaina ‘i Tonga ni kae pehe foki ki he ‘amipasitoa ‘o Tonga ‘i Beijing, Siaina ki he fakapapau’i e malu ‘a e fanau sipoti kimu’a ke nau foki mai ki Tonga ni. Kuo fakahä mai foki mei he ‘amipasitoa ‘o Tonga i Beijing, Siaina ‘oku malu pe ‘a e fanau ako kotoa ‘i Wuhan, Siaina pea oku tokangaekina ‘enau mo’ui lelei.”

    The Prime Minister said Tonga’s Ministry of Health is working closely with the World Health Organisation to make sure the country is safe.

    He said he and his cabinet were “cautious” of the mystery viral pneumonia and to make sure no one would die from it.

    Hon Tu’i’onetoa said talks had been held to make sure the Ministry of Health and the government were prepared to protect the public’s well-being.

    The Prime Minister said he has discussed the deadly outbreak with the Australian and New Zealand high commissioners in Tonga.

    “China is ramping up containment measures as the spread of a new coronavirus that has killed 56 people and infected at least 1,975 more in the country accelerates,” Alzajeera reported.

    The website said: “A nationwide ban on wildlife trade is in place and more than 56 million people in almost 20 cities are affected by travel restrictions, which have been introduced amid fears the transmission rate will balloon as hundreds of millions of Chinese travel for the Lunar New Year celebrations.”

    Four cases of 2019-nCoV were diagonised in Australia with three in NSW and one in Victoria.

    “NSW Health said on Sunday afternoon another person had tested positive, according to their preliminary test results, though more follow-up was needed.

    Three men are in hospital in Sydney after flying in from China, while another man in his 50s is being treated in Melbourne,” reported the Guardian.

    The number of confirmed cases of the new coronavirus in the U.S. has risen to five.

    All of the U.S. cases are patients who have recently traveled from Wuhan.

    Other countries to have reported cases of the virus include France, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand and South Korea.


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