The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported 62 new COVID-19 cases, including four domestic infections linked to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport initially confirmed by the Taoyuan City Government on Thursday evening.
The domestic COVID-19 cases are a 27-year-old security guard working at the airport’s Terminal 2, two members of the Golden Voice Social Club and the sister of a previously infected social club member.
The other seven cases in the cluster are airport janitors, who were confirmed to have contracted COVID-19 earlier this week, the center said.
The security guard is a woman in her 20s, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, adding that 388 contacts had been identified and 105 had tested negative for the disease.
The test results for 257 contacts were due later yesterday, while arrangements were being made for another 26 contacts to be tested, Chen said.
The first person infected in the cluster was likely a female janitor in her 50s who was confirmed to have contracted the disease on Wednesday, he said.
The woman tested positive for anti-nucleocapsid antibodies and had the highest cycle threshold value among the people in the cluster, which indicated that she had been infected a while ago, he added.
Victor Wang (王必勝), the center’s on-site commander at the airport, said priority was being given to identifying all possible contacts of the cluster to curb the spread of the disease.
Meanwhile, the center yesterday adjusted the number of cases in the cluster at the airport down to 11, saying that genome sequencing had indicated one infected person was not part of an infection chain linked to janitors.
The 58-year old disease prevention taxi driver was confirmed to have caught the disease earlier this week and would now be categorized as a separate case, the center said.
Three family members and six other contacts of the driver had tested negative for COVID-19, Chen said.
The 58 new imported cases reported yesterday involved people aged from their teens to 70s who entered Taiwan between Dec. 22 last year and Thursday, arriving from Austria, Bangladesh, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Mexico, Nigeria, Spain, Switzerland, the UK, the US and Vietnam, the center said.
The US Department of State yesterday criticized Beijing over its misrepresentation of the US’ “one China” policy in the latest diplomatic salvo between the two countries over a bid by Taiwan to regain its observer status at the World Health Assembly, the decisionmaking body of the WHO. “The PRC [People’s Republic of China] continues to publicly misrepresent U.S. policy,” Department of State spokesman Ned Price wrote on Twitter. “The United States does not subscribe to the PRC’s ‘one China principle’ — we remain committed to our longstanding, bipartisan one China policy, guided by the Taiwan Relations Act, Three Joint Communiques, and
FATES LINKED: The US president said that sanctions on Russia over Ukraine must exact a ‘long-term price,’ because otherwise ‘what signal does that send to China?’ US President Joe Biden yesterday vowed that US forces would defend Taiwan militarily in the event of a Chinese attack in his strongest statement to date on the issue. Beijing is already “flirting with danger,” Biden said following talks with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo, in which the pair agreed to monitor Chinese naval activity and joint Chinese-Russian exercises. Asked if Washington was willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan, he replied: “Yes.” “That’s the commitment we made,” Biden said. “We agreed with the ‘one China’ policy, we signed on to it ... but the idea that it can be
INFORMATION LEAKED: Documents from Xinjiang purportedly showed top leaders in Beijing calling for a forceful crackdown and even orders to shoot to kill Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) yesterday held a videoconference with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet as she visited Xinjiang during a mission overshadowed by fresh allegations of Uighur abuses and fears she is being used as a public relations tool. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been accused of detaining more than 1 million Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the region as part of a years-long crackdown the US and lawmakers in other Western nations have labeled a “genocide.” China denies the allegations. Bachelet was expected to visit the cities of Urumqi and Kashgar on a six-day tour. The US
SUBTLE? While Biden said the US policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’ on Taiwan had not changed, the group targeted China and Russia without naming them Leaders of Australia, India, Japan and the US yesterday warned against attempts to “change the status quo by force,” as concerns grow about whether China could invade Taiwan. The issue of Taiwan loomed over a leadership meeting in Tokyo of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) nations — the US, Japan, Australia and India — who stressed their determination to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific region in the face of an increasingly assertive China, although Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the group was not targeting any one country. The four leaders said in a joint statement issued after their talks