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3 Days that Stopped the World | Al Jazeera Investigations

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Published on 11 Apr 2021 / In News and Politics

Mid January, 2020. Two Chinese journalists were sent to Wuhan to investigate a mysterious virus outbreak. This is their account of the three days before Wuhan entered lockdown. The World Health Organization held meetings to decide if the epidemic was a global health emergency. It did not consider it so. When the journalists arrive, locals were busy preparing for upcoming Chinese New Year celebration. At the time, not much was known about the virus that was just days away from changing the world. Then came a pivotal announcement: human-to-human transmission was confirmed. The journalists witnessed a city of 11 million people transform overnight. Initial nonchalance was quickly replaced by panic. People started wearing masks, shops were shuttered. They shuttled between the increasingly saturated hospitals and Huanan Seafood Market, at the time thought to be the epicentre of this contagion. And they were stopped at every juncture. Their reports were censored and their investigations blocked. @AJIUnit

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