February 03, 2020
A private airlines’ flight QR 632, carrying 40 Pakistani students stranded in China due to coronavirus, has reached Islamabad today (Monday) after temporary suspension of flight operation to the neighboring country. According to details, the students were allowed to go to their homes following complete medical checkup. On Friday, Pakistan had halted flights to and from China with immediate effect, a civil aviation official said, as the death toll from a virus outbreak spreading in China mounted and the World Health Organization called it a global health emergency. Earlier, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services Dr Zafar Mirza said Pakistan was fully capable of diagnosing coronavirus after China sent approximately 1,000 kits to Pakistan to detect the deadly disease.
On the other hand, China’s death toll from the coronavirus epidemic soared past 360 on Monday, with deepening global concern about the outbreak and governments closing their borders to people from China. The fresh toll came a day after China imposed a lockdown on a major city far from the epicentre and the first fatality outside the country was reported in the Philippines. Authorities in Hubei, the province at the epicentre of the outbreak, reported 56 new fatalities, with one reported in the southwestern megalopolis of Chongqing. That took the toll in China to 361, exceeding the 349 mainland fatalities from the 2002-3 SARS outbreak.