The people of the city where the first virus was first detected are taking their first cautious steps outside after being confined for three monthsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageWuhan ends lockdown - in picturesLast week the city of Wuhan celebrated the end of its nearly three-month lockdown. Flower beds and trees were planted in parks across from hospitals previously overwhelmed with panicked and sick patients. The streets have been scrubbed clean.Before midnight last Wednesday, when restrictions barring people from leaving the city were officially lifted, state news outlets sent drones into the sky to film lit-up buildings and bridges. Cars lined up at motorway tollbooths, waiting to leave. Drivers described feeling finally “liberated”. Several housing developments had flags declaring them “virus free”. One said: “Decisive battle, decisive win.” Continue reading...
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Residents are looking for an explanation from the government about its handling of coronavirusCoronavirus – latest...Residents are looking for an explanation from the government about its handling of coronavirusCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageIn early January, Hu Aizhen, 65, heard that a new coronavirus had emerged in her home city, Wuhan. She was not worried – officials said it was not contagious – so she went about her days as usual and prepared for the lunar new year at the end of the month.Just before the city was put under lockdown, Hu developed pneumonia symptoms. After days of waiting and searching for a hospital, she was tested for the virus. Her result was negative, but tests at the time were known to be inaccurate and she showed obvious signs of the virus. Nevertheless, she was refused treatment by six hospitals. Continue reading...
'Diary of a closed city': A Chinese author chronicled her life in Wuhan, where the first coronavirus cases were detected
An author in Wuhan, China — where the first coronavirus cases were detected — kept an...An author in Wuhan, China — where the first coronavirus cases were detected — kept an online diary describing life in lockdown in the city. Going by her pen name, Fang Fang, instead of her real name Wang Fang, she chronicled various days during the 76-day lockdown. The New York Times translated excerpts of Wang's accounts, from the first few days of the entire city going under quarantine to the day the lockdown was lifted. "If authors have any responsibilities in the face of disaster, the greatest of them is to bear witness," she said in an interview with The Times. "I've always cared about how the weak survive great upheavals. The individuals who are left out — they've always been my chief concern." Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. An author in Wuhan, China — where the first coronavirus cases were detected — kept an online diary describing life in lockdown in the city. Her controversial diary was widely relied upon by tens of millions of Chinese readers looking for in-person updates as the coronavirus first began to unfold in the country, The New York Times reported. Going by her pen name, Fang Fang, instead of her real name Wang Fang, she chronicled various days during the 76-day lockdown. The Times translated excerpts of Wang's accounts, from the first few days of the entire city going under quarantine to the day the lockdown was lifted. "If authors have any responsibilities in the face of disaster, the greatest of them is to bear witness," she said in an interview with The Times. "I've always cared about how the weak survive great upheavals. The individuals who are left out — they've always been my chief concern." On January 26, Wang began her 'diary of a closed city.' "The people of Wuhan are still at a critical time," she wrote, according to The Times' translation. "They have moved past their initial terror, helplessness, anxiety and stress, and are much calmer and steadier. But still they need to be comforted and cheered on by everyone." Wang then relayed a story she heard from her daughter about her friend's father, who had liver cancer and died from a "suspected case of infection." After he was hospitalized, there was no available medical staff to treat him and he died in three hours, Wang wrote. She described the quiet atmosphere in the city as people remained indoors to contain the spread of the then mysterious virus. At the end of January, she described how hard it was to find staple groceries like eggs when she went on an errand run. Wang commended the employees in supermarkets and street cleaners who were still diligently working amid the outbreak, adding they gave her a sense of calm by carrying on with their lives. "True, they have to go on living and so do we, that's the way it is," she wrote. "I often admire these working people. Sometimes a brief chat with them leaves me feeling mysteriously calmed." On February 7, Wang wrote she was 'distraught' to find out whistleblower doctor Li Wenliang had died from the coronavirus. Li Wenliang was labeled a martyr after the doctor, who was silenced by Chinese officials when he initially sounded the alarm on the coronavirus late last year, died from the coronavirus. People in China were up at arms following Li's death, with posts continually flooding the internet despite Chinese censors. People also took the streets in an uproar. "The flood of tears became a mighty wave on the internet!" Wang wrote. "That night, Li Wenliang was ferried into another world on all the tears shed for him." "At midday shouts went out in Wuhan: We'll be the ones to care for Li Wenliang's family and children." Following Chinese officials' announcement that they would soon lift the lockdown, Wang also concluded her diary on March 24. The unprecedented lockdown on Wuhan's nearly 11 million residents was lifted on April 7 — 76 days after it was initially put into place. "Many people have left messages saying that no officials will be held accountable, that there's no hope in sight for that," she wrote in her final entry. "As for whether they will ultimately be held responsible, I don't know." She wrote that the people of Wuhan, as "witnesses to the tragic times of this city," have a "responsibility and duty to seek justice for those who died wrongfully." Wang wrote she will do her part by continuing to chronicle this historic time during a pandemic. "If anyone imagines that I'll lightly set aside my pen, that will never happen," she wrote. "One word after another, I will inscribe them onto history's pillar of infamy."Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Tax Day is now July 15 — this is what it's like to do your own taxes for the very first time
Interviews with patients, medical workers and residents reveal delays that had consequences for the city, the...Interviews with patients, medical workers and residents reveal delays that had consequences for the city, the world and China’s leadershipCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageWhat is Covid-19?The Huanan seafood wholesale market in central Wuhan was the kind of place where people often caught colds. Vendors started setting up as early as 3am, plunging their hands into buckets of cold water as they cleaned and prepared produce for the customers that arrived every morning. Continue reading...