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    Reporters Without Borders said in it’s 2005 special report titled “Xinhua: the world’s biggest propaganda agency”, that “Xinhua remains the voice of the sole party”, “particularly during the SARS epidemic, Xinhua has for last few months been putting out news reports embarrassing to the government, but they are designed to fool the international community, since they are not published in Chinese.”
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Taiwan Urges China to Come Clean On Suspected Sars Cases

Posted by Author on January 23, 2007

Gulf Times, Qatar, 22 January, 2007-

TAIPEI: A Taiwan health official yesterday asked Beijing to verify and publicise “immediately” suspected severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) cases in China’s Guangdong province.

“According to the Hong Kong press, some people have been isolated at the No 8 People’s Hospital in Guangzhou and are suspected of having Sars,” Shih Wen-yi, deputy director of the Centres for Disease control (CDC), told the Central News Agency (CNA).

“We hope the Chinese authorities can immediately verify and publicise the information, to avoid delayed treatment and epidemic control,” Shih said.

“So far all our information is from the Hong Kong press. Taiwan has not received notice about the suspected Sars cases from the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention,” Shih said.

Shih said that late last year, there was a case of avian influenza in Anhui province, but China did not report it to the World Health Organisation (WHO) until early this year, causing a delay of one month.

“CDC is closely monitoring Guangdong’s suspected Sars cases. We urge Taiwanese who have travelled to Guangdong to see doctor if they have fever or other discomfort,” CNA quoted Shih as saying.

According to Hong Kong’s Singtao Daily, reports about the suspected Sars cases in the Guangdong capital Guangzhou appeared on the internet on Friday.

It was rumoured that dozens of people had been isolated at the No 8 People’s Hospital, suspected of having Sars. Several Guangdong military hospitals have been instructed to stand ready to receive emergency patients, Singtao Daily reported yesterday.

On Saturday, a Singtao Daily reporter phoned the No 8 People’s Hospital and was told by one staff member that there were suspected Sars cases at the hospital, but when the reporter asked a doctor at the same hospital to confirm it, the doctor refused to comment.

Sars is believed to have erupted in Guangdong in November 2002 and quickly spread to the rest of the world via Hong Kong.

Between November 1, 2002 and July 31, 2003, 8,096 people around the world had contracted Sars, and out of them 774 died, according to WHO figures.

China had the largest number of Sars infections (5,327), followed by Hong Kong (1,755), Taiwan (346), Canada (251) and Singapore (238).–DPA

original report from Gulf Times

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