n perhaps the strongest signal yet that the coronavirus outbreak is under control in China, Chinese President Xi Jinping paid a visit to Wuhan on Tuesday.
This marks the first time that Xi has visited Wuhan since the epidemic began in January. He made his first public appearance during the outbreak last month, inspecting a Beijing neighborhood while wearing a face mask.
According to China’s official Xinhua news agency, Xi “went straight to Huoshenshan Hospital” upon his arrival in Wuhan where he “visited patients” and “sent regards” to medical workers, “encouraging them to firm up confidence in defeating the epidemic.”
The 1,000-bed hospital was built in just 10 days at the start of the outbreak to treat those infected with the Covid-19 virus.
However, video from Xi’s tour shows that he didn’t’ actually visit patients or medical workers inside the hospital but instead talked to them over a video screen in a conference room. A much safer method for the leader of a country.
Afterward, Xi toured a neighborhood in Wuhan where quarantined residents were reportedly kept on their best behavior by police officers who sat with them by their windows while Xi walked down the street and encouraged them to shout out greetings to the Chinese leader.
Last week, Vice Premier Sun Chunlan was heckled by Wuhan residents as she led a government team through one neighborhood.
“Fake, everything is fake!” the residents shouted, reportedly after promised deliveries of fresh meat and veggies failed to arrive.
President Xi Jinping on Tuesday visited residents who are quarantined in their homes in a community and frontline workers in Wuhan, the epicenter of the #COVID19 outbreak, following a stop at Huoshenshan Hospital. pic.twitter.com/C3J53vSWI8
— People’s Daily, China (@PDChina) March 10, 2020
A wechat post spreading online from a #Wuhan compound committee tells residents police are being deployed to enter their houses for ‘about an hour’ to do a ‘safety inspection’. President Xi Jinping is in #Wuhan today. Last wk residents heckled an official during a compound tour. pic.twitter.com/U5ObmHNHSp
— Bill Birtles (@billbirtles) March 10, 2020
— W. B. Yeats (@WBYeats1865) March 10, 2020
The epicenter of the coronavirus that has since spread across the world, Wuhan has seen a dramatic drop in new cases recently with just 17 being reported on Monday.