The People’s Liberation Army of China (PLA) sent thousands of military medics and militiamen to help the government grapple with the coronavirus outbreak in the country, Major General Kui Yanwei, defence attache at the Chinese Embassy in Russia, has revealed.
In his article for the Russian magazine Natsionalnaya Oborona (National Defence), Kui noted that under the command of President Xi Jinping, the PLA “courageously took responsibility and boldly fought fierce battles with the coronavirus”.
He underlined that the army “played an active role in launching the anti-COVID-19 assault, making an important contribution to the victory over this unprecedented epidemic”.
The general added that since the beginning of the outbreak, 63 military hospitals have been transformed into the hospitals designed to receive patients with pneumonia caused by COVID-19.
According to him, about 3,000 new beds were created, and more than 10,000 military paramedics were sent to help treat those infected with the coronavirus.
“Four military hospitals from the Central Combat Command in Hubei Province have become key facilities in treating patients with pneumonia caused by COVID-19”, Kui pointed out.
The attache emphasised that all 28 provincial military sub-districts daily sent about 200,000 militiamen to add to local authorities’ efforts to implement a number of tasks related to tackling the outbreak.
Great scene.....— Sanjeev Goyal 💯% FB (@sanjeev_goyal) March 22, 2020
From 3 days there are no new cases of Covid-19 in Wuhan ....
Chinese army saluting Doctors and medical staff while they leave Wuhan City. pic.twitter.com/8fTMqnr57C
These included management of the workforce who came from other regions, street disinfection, food delivery, and promotion of coronavirus-related preventive measures, the general said.
His remarks come after World Health Organisation (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Gebreyesus praised the fact that the Chinese city of Wuhan had not recorded any new cases of COVID-19 for the first time since the outbreak originated there in late December.
"Wuhan provides hope for the rest of the world, that even the most severe situation can be turned around", Tedros told a virtual press conference last Friday, adding that humanity now has the power to change the way the pandemic unfolds.
He spoke after China admitted to some "shortcomings and deficiencies" in its response to the coronavirus, but vehemently dismissed US claims that it reacted too slowly, or tried to cover up the initial outbreak on Chinese soil.
The country’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying slammed the comments as “shameless and morally repulsive”, urging “those US politicians” to stop politicising “public health issues”.