UAE readies for ‘worst case’ scenarios as coronavirus spreads in the Middle East

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The United Arab Emirates is prepared for “worst-case scenarios” as coronavirus spreads in the Middle East, a government official said Wednesday. 

Three Gulf Arab states recorded their first new coronavirus cases this week, with all the infected people originating from Iran, UAE’s neighbor over the Gulf which. Iran recorded 19 deaths caused by the virus, making it the most outside of China. Iran reported 139 cases of infection confirmed. 

Authorities in the UAE, which has reported 13 cases since Jan. 28, have enough facilities to quarantine patients and will be carrying out surveillance on people entering the country, said the official from the UAE National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority. 

Authorities in the UAE reported 13 cases since January 28, and say they have adequate facilities to quarantine the infected and carry out observation on all those entering the country, said the official from the UAE National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority.  

It was too soon to ban public gatherings in the fields of business, trade and tourism center, said the official. Dubai is also going to host the Expo 2020 world fair in October for a period of six months. With the much-anticipated event right around the corner, it is said that the same will most likely bring together 192 countries for a six-month high-tech display in a 1,000-acre site. 

The UAE official said, “We are quite satisfied that we have taken all the necessary steps needed to preempt the spread of the virus at all levels, without pushing the country into a state of unwarranted panic.” 

The disease, which started in China toward the end of 2019, has infected around 80,000 people and over 2,700 died, by far most in China. 

Significant Gulf trading exchanges slid on Wednesday, reflecting decreases in worldwide stocks over the spread of the virus. Dubai’s main share index fell 2% to its most minimal level since last June. 

Air Arabia Airlines incurred heavy losses from the last session to close 2.1% lower, after the UAE on Tuesday suspended all flights to and fro Iran.–

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