Coronavirus cradle Wuhan partly reopens after lockdown

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image copyrightAFP
image captionMany of those arriving in Wuhan on Saturday pulled suitcases behind them as they returned to their families

The city in China where the coronavirus pandemic began, Wuhan, has partially re-opened after more than two months of isolation.

Crowds of passengers were pictured arriving at Wuhan train station on Saturday.

People are being allowed to enter but not leave, according to reports.

Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, saw more than 50,000 coronavirus cases. At least 3,000 people in Hubei died from the disease.

But numbers have fallen dramatically, according to China's figures. On Saturday the province reported 54 new cases emerging the previous day - which it said were all imported.

As it battles to control cases coming from abroad, China has announced a temporary ban on all foreign visitors, even if they have visas or residence permits. It is also limiting Chinese and foreign airlines to one flight per week, and flights must not be more than 75% full.

In other global developments:

Meanwhile, the virus continues to spread rapidly in other countries around the world.

  • More than 600,000 infections have been confirmed globally and almost 29,000 deaths, according to figures collated by Johns Hopkins University. Nearly 136,000 patients have recovered
  • The death toll in Spain has exceeded 5,000, after it reported 832 more fatalities in the past 24 hours. Spain is the world's worst hit country after Italy
  • The US now has the highest number of confirmed infections at 104,000
  • South Korea says that for the first time it now has more people who have recovered from the virus than are still infected. It reported 146 new cases on Saturday, taking the total to 9,478 - of whom 4,811 have been released from hospital
  • Russia and Ireland are among the latest countries to bring in new restrictions to try to slow the spread of the virus. In Russia, shopping centres, restaurants and cafes have been ordered to close. In Ireland, people will have to stay at home with limited exceptions for the next two weeks
  • In the UK, frontline National Health Service staff in England will begin being tested this weekend to see if they have coronavirus

What signs are there of Wuhan reopening?

The virus is thought to have originated in a seafood market in Wuhan that "conducted illegal transactions of wild animals".

The city's 11 million residents have been shut off from the rest of the world since the middle of January, with roadblocks around the outskirts and drastic restrictions on daily life.

media captionCoronavirus: Life inside China's lockdown

But roads reopened to incoming traffic late on Friday, according to Reuters news agency.

And state media said the subway was open from Saturday and trains would be able to arrive at the city's 17 railway stations.

Nineteen-year-old student Guo Liangkai, who arrived back in the city after three months, told Reuters: "First of all, it makes me very happy to see my family.

"We wanted to hug but now is a special period so we can't hug or make any actions like these."

image copyrightAFP
image captionMask-clad passengers waited in a line after arriving at the railway station in Wuhan on Saturday

All arrivals in Wuhan have to show a green code on a mobile app to prove that they are healthy.

Officials say restrictions on people leaving the city will be lifted on 8 April, when domestic flights are also expected to restart.

The virus emerged in China in December and more than 3,300 people there have died from the infection - but both Italy and Spain now have higher death tolls.

Coronavirus global cases, 22 April 2020

This information is regularly updated but may not reflect the latest totals for each country.

Cases Deaths
USA 824,065 44,996
Spain 204,178 21,282
Italy 183,957 24,648
Germany 148,453 5,086
UK 129,044 17,337
France 117,324 20,796
Turkey 95,591 2,259
Iran 84,802 5,297
China 83,864 4,636
Russia 52,763 456
Brazil 43,368 2,761
Belgium 40,956 5,998
Canada 39,405 1,915
Netherlands 34,139 3,916
Switzerland 28,063 1,478
Portugal 21,379 762
India 20,111 645
Peru 17,837 484
Ireland 16,040 730
Sweden 15,322 1,765
Austria 14,873 491
Israel 13,942 184
Saudi Arabia 11,631 109
Japan 11,512 281
Chile 10,832 147
South Korea 10,694 238
Ecuador 10,398 520
Poland 9,856 401
Pakistan 9,749 209
Mexico 9,501 857
Romania 9,242 498
Singapore 9,125 11
United Arab Emirates 7,755 46
Denmark 7,695 370
Norway 7,241 182
Indonesia 7,135 616
Czech Republic 7,033 201
Belarus 6,723 55
Australia 6,647 74
Serbia 6,630 125
Philippines 6,599 437
Qatar 6,533 9
Ukraine 6,125 161
Malaysia 5,482 92
Dominican Republic 5,044 245
Panama 4,821 141
Colombia 4,149 196
Finland 4,014 141
Luxembourg 3,618 78
Egypt 3,490 264
South Africa 3,465 58
Bangladesh 3,382 110
Morocco 3,209 145
Argentina 3,144 151
Thailand 2,826 49
Algeria 2,811 392
Moldova 2,614 72
Greece 2,401 121
Hungary 2,168 225
Kuwait 2,080 11
Kazakhstan 2,025 19
Bahrain 1,973 7
Croatia 1,908 48
Iceland 1,778 10
Uzbekistan 1,692 6
Iraq 1,602 83
Estonia 1,552 43
Oman 1,508 8
Azerbaijan 1,480 20
New Zealand 1,451 14
Armenia 1,401 24
Lithuania 1,370 38
Slovenia 1,344 77
Bosnia and Herzegovina 1,342 51
North Macedonia 1,231 55
Slovakia 1,199 14
Cameroon 1,163 43
Cuba 1,137 38
Afghanistan 1,092 36
Ghana 1,042 9
Bulgaria 1,015 47
Djibouti 945 2
Ivory Coast 916 13
Puerto Rico 915 64
Tunisia 901 38
Cyprus 784 12
Nigeria 782 25
Latvia 748 9
Andorra 717 37
Diamond Princess cruise ship 712 13
Guinea 688 6
Lebanon 677 21
Costa Rica 669 6
Niger 657 20
Kyrgyzstan 612 7
Albania 609 26
Bolivia 609 37
Burkina Faso 600 38
Uruguay 543 12
Kosovo 510 12
Honduras 510 46
San Marino 476 40
Palestinian Territories 466 4
Malta 443 3
Jordan 428 7
Taiwan 425 6
Senegal 412 5
Réunion 410
Georgia 408 4
DR Congo 350 25
Mauritius 328 9
Guatemala 316 8
Montenegro 313 5
Mayotte 311 4
Sri Lanka 310 7
Isle of Man 307 9
Kenya 296 14
Venezuela 288 10
Somalia 286 8
Vietnam 268
Mali 258 14
Jersey 255 14
Tanzania 254 10
Guernsey 241 10
Jamaica 233 6
El Salvador 225 7
Paraguay 213 9
Faroe Islands 185
Congo 165 6
Martinique 164 14
Gabon 156 1
Rwanda 150
Guadeloupe 148 12
Sudan 140 13
Brunei 138 1
Guam 136 5
Gibraltar 132
Cambodia 122
Myanmar 121 5
Madagascar 121
Trinidad and Tobago 115 8
Ethiopia 114 3
Liberia 101 8
Bermuda 98 5
French Guiana 97 1
Aruba 97 2
Monaco 94 3
Maldives 86
Togo 86 6
Equatorial Guinea 83
Liechtenstein 81 1
Barbados 75 5
Zambia 70 3
Cape Verde 68 1
Sint Maarten 68 10
Cayman Islands 66 1
Guyana 66 7
Bahamas 65 9
Uganda 61
Libya 59 1
Haiti 58 4
French Polynesia 57
Benin 54 1
United States Virgin Islands 53 3
Sierra Leone 50
Guinea-Bissau 50
Nepal 42
Syria 42 3
Mozambique 39
Eritrea 39
Saint Martin 38 2
Mongolia 35
Chad 33
Eswatini 31 1
Zimbabwe 28 3
Antigua and Barbuda 24 3
Angola 24 2
Timor-Leste 23
Botswana 20 1
Laos 19
Malawi 18 2
New Caledonia 18
Belize 18 2
Fiji 18
Namibia 16
Dominica 16
Saint Lucia 15
Saint Kitts and Nevis 15
Curaçao 14 1
Northern Mariana Islands 14 2
Central African Republic 14
Grenada 14
St Vincent and the Grenadines 13
Montserrat 11
Falkland Islands 11
Turks and Caicos Islands 11 1
Greenland 11
Burundi 11 1
Seychelles 11
Suriname 10 1
Gambia 10 1
Nicaragua 10 2
Vatican 9
MS Zaandam cruise ship 9 2
Papua New Guinea 7
Mauritania 7 1
Bhutan 6
Saint Barthelemy 6
Western Sahara 6
British Virgin Islands 5 1
South Sudan 4
Sao Tome and Principe 4
Anguilla 3
Yemen 1
Saint Pierre and Miquelon 1

Source: Johns Hopkins University, national public health agencies.

Last updated on 22 April 2020, 07:00 BST.

It is now battling to control a wave of imported cases as infections soar abroad.

This so-called "second wave" of imported infections is also affecting countries like South Korea and Singapore, which had been successful in stopping the spread of disease in recent weeks.

image copyrightAFP
image captionWuhan has been under lockdown since the middle of January

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