Malaysia locks down 2nd COVID-19 red zone to curb virus spread

31-Mar-2020 Intellasia | Mainichi | 6:02 AM Print This Post

Malaysia on Sunday announced that 3,918 residents of seven villages on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur will from midnight be placed under a complete lockdown after a religious school in the area was found to be a hotspot for the new coronavirus.

Defense minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said in a statement that the health ministry found 71 coronavirus cases among 274 students at the Maahad Tahfiz An-Nabawiyyah school in Hulu Langat district in Selangor state, just 22 kilometers from the Kuala Lumpur city centre.

“Due to the high number of cases in the school, the government, on the advice from the health ministry, decided to enforce the enhanced movement control order,” he said.

This is the second area placed under a complete two-week lockdown after one covering two small communities in Johor state and involving 3,570 residents, which started midnight Thursday.

Under the “enhanced movement control order,” access to the affected area is sealed, all businesses are shut, and residents cannot leave their homes at all.

Ismail said two weeks’ worth of food will be delivered to the residents by the welfare department.

The lockdown will affect 3,918 residents from 700 households in seven villages.

The tougher measure would allow health authorities to conduct door-to-door screening, Ismail said.

Malaysia reported 150 new infection cases nationwide Sunday, raising the national tally to 2,470 cases, the highest number in Southeast Asia.

The health ministry also reported that the number of deaths from the outbreak rose by seven in the largest spike within 24-hours, bringing the death toll to 34.

The entire country of 32 million people has been placed under what officials have termed a “movement control order” for a month from March 18.

Everyone is required to stay home except for those working in essential services like healthcare, enforcement agencies, transportation and finance. The head of each household, however, is allowed to go out to run errands.


Category: Malaysia

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