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Different scenes of New Year’s Eve in 2020: Wuhan’s streets are crowded, New York’s Times Square is empty



The year 2020 that can be recorded in history has passed. For many people, they are looking forward to a better life in 2021, but for people in other places, New Year’s Eve is just a new calendar. That’s it, the bad situation continues.

On the last day of 2020, some netizens on Twitter posted two photos for comparison: one is the Chinese city of Wuhan where the first confirmed case of new coronavirus was reported. People wearing masks happily New Year’s Eve in front of the Jianghanguan Building. The other is Times Square, one of the landmarks of New York. The streets are extremely deserted. For the first time in 114 years, there have been no people there for the New Year. The media described it as a “ghost city.”

In addition to netizens, foreign media including Reuters have also paid attention to the enthusiastic New Year’s Eve of Wuhan citizens. In fact, since the “unblocking” on April 8, 2020, daily life in Wuhan has long been restored. The water and electricity syllables held there in August aroused the sigh of foreign media reporters. Some people are jealous, and others woke up completely.


12 months later, people in Wuhan will stay in the customs building for the New Year

If you just look at the photo, many people cannot recognize the two places in the photo. However, in addition to posting pictures, this Twitter netizen also added a paragraph of text: “New Year’s Eve: Wuhan vs Times Square.” This makes people immediately think of the connection between the epidemic and these two locations.

Wuhan was the first place to report confirmed cases of new coronavirus. From the end of 2019 to the beginning of 2020, the sudden new coronavirus disrupted the daily lives of Wuhan people and even all Chinese. But with the “closure of the city” and concerted efforts to fight the epidemic, the heroic city of Wuhan finally contained the epidemic and was “unblocked” in April.

More importantly, after the “unblocking”, due to the scientific and effective prevention and control measures of the Chinese government and the high protection awareness of the people, the daily lives of Wuhan citizens have become orderly and have not been affected by the new coronavirus.

The Jianghanguan Building in Wuhan is located at the intersection of Jianghan Road, Yanjiang Avenue, Hankou, and is one of the three earliest existing customs buildings in China. Within the boundaries of Old Hankou, the punctual clock at Jianghan Pass can still be heard. Every New Year’s Eve, people in Wuhan love to count down the countdown under the clock tower and welcome the New Year together.

At the end of 2020, many Wuhan citizens still came to the Jianghanguan Building in accordance with tradition. The only difference was that they all wore masks this New Year’s Eve. When the building’s bell rang at zero, many people released their balloons into the air, cheering and shouting “Happy New Year”.

Reuters reporters noticed that since the global pandemic has not yet ended, a considerable number of police forces have been deployed to maintain order and strictly control the number of people at the scene, but the overall atmosphere is relaxed and happy. At the same time, some security personnel will remind a few careless citizens at the scene that they must wear masks to participate in New Year’s Eve.

Mr. Yang, a 25-year-old Wuhan citizen, said: “I hope that in 2021, Guotai Min’an will go well, Wuhan will continue as usual, and I hope the world will end the epidemic as soon as possible.”

Reuters pointed out in this article reporting the happy New Year’s Eve among the citizens of Wuhan that just 12 months ago, the WHO first received a case of unexplained pneumonia reported in Wuhan, but in recent months there has been no case of pneumonia in Wuhan. Due to the epidemic, Wuhan has recently launched emergency vaccination work for the new coronavirus vaccine.


US media: The empty Times Square is like a “ghost city”

On the other side, the severe epidemic situation in the United States has almost never eased. For the American people, what they will face in 2021 and the previous year have not changed.

According to statistics from Johns Hopkins University, as of 17:00 on December 31, 2020, the total number of confirmed cases of new coronavirus in the United States has reached 19,893,290, and the total number of new coronavirus deaths has reached 344,399.

In previous years, when resigning from the old and welcoming the new, a large number of people would gather in Times Square in New York to count down the new year together. At this time, the spectacular “Crystal Ball Landing Ceremony” is held there. This ceremony dates back to 1907 and was only canceled in 1942 and 1943 due to World War II.

But this time, it should be regarded as the most special New Year’s Eve in Times Square for 114 years. It is not a war that affects the celebration, but it is comparable to a “war”.

Due to the epidemic, people were forbidden to enter Times Square for New Year’s Eve, and the police sealed off the nearby area. The entire Times Square looked very deserted and empty. Some celebrations were changed to online.

In a report on the evening of December 31, the New York Post stated that it had never seen Times Square with anyone on the New Year’s Eve, and described it as an “eerie ghost town”.

It is worth noting that in August 2020, a Thousand People Water Electronic Syllable Festival held in Wuhan has attracted the attention of foreign media. How did a so-called “blocked terrorist city” start a water party? Some people don’t believe it anyway.

Agence France-Presse reporter Rachel Blundy sighed on Twitter at the time: “2020 is very strange… Wuhan is having a party. Virus? What virus?”

After seeing the AFP report, RT reporter Malik commented, “This scene is like a cruel joke for countries that struggle to control the epidemic.”

MSNBC’s well-known media person Chris Hayes tweeted “self-deprecating”, “Wuhan has set up crowded rock parties, but we are using Zoom to hold video conferences.”

On August 20, 2020, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian responded to the Wuhan Water Power Festival, saying, “This shows that Wuhan has won a strategic victory in fighting the epidemic, and it also shows that the Chinese government has achieved a strategic victory in fighting the epidemic. People in European and American countries are very surprised. I also hope that through your lens, you can report the real situation in China back to European and American countries so that people in European and American countries can understand the real situation in China.”

In fact, on February 24, 2020, Bruce Alyward, Senior Advisor to the Director-General of the World Health Organization, commented on China’s “war epidemic”: “We must recognize the contribution made by the people of Wuhan, and the world owes you. After the epidemic has passed, I hope to have the opportunity to thank the people of Wuhan once again on behalf of the world. I know that during this epidemic, the Chinese people have contributed a lot.” This passage also made the translator choke.

China’s CCTV News commented that the period of Wuhan’s “closed city” period would be written into history in a very heavy way. This period of history was not only written by the more than 9 million people in Wuhan who were “blocked” in the city, but also by the 1.4 billion Chinese people.

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Germany starts ordering 2022 vaccines, local leaders suggest approval of Chinese vaccines



German Health Minister Jens Spahn revealed on Saturday (30th) that the country has now begun to order the 2022 vaccine, because the spread of the variant new coronavirus may require an increase in the dose in the future.

According to Reuters news on the 31st, Spann said in a video conference for medical staff on the 30th that Germany is currently ordering 2022 vaccines, and at least some of them must be obtained first because no one knows whether there is a need to increase the number of vaccine injections in the future, or In order to maintain immunity to the new coronavirus, vaccines must be purchased in advance as a preventive measure. Spann said that 2.3 million people out of the 83 million German population have received the first dose of vaccine, but because vaccine manufacturers such as AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Modena, and other vaccine manufacturers suddenly announced reductions in production, European governments faced a shortage of vaccines. Both are quite a headache. The German government has set up a new vaccination task force, and it is also expected to convene federal and local government representatives, pharmaceutical companies, and EU representatives for a vaccine meeting on the 1st.

Germany, as the largest economy in Europe, stalled during the second blockade in November. Many Germans envied the faster vaccination rates in Britain, Israel, and other countries. The German federal government has continuously received criticisms of too slow vaccination progress. German media described the government vaccine program as a “scandal.” Public opinion surveys show that people’s satisfaction with the government’s epidemic prevention has dropped to 49%, the lowest point since the epidemic.

Before the meeting of the new vaccination working group, some powerful regional leaders in Germany also expressed dissatisfaction with the federal epidemic prevention and control measures. The governor of Bavaria, Markus Soeder, put forward a new proposal that requires the federal state to allow the state to have more say in the supply of vaccines to the groups most in need. Soder said, “We need an emergency vaccine economy system, and the country must formulate clear rules,” he called on the authorities to consider approving Chinese and Russian vaccines for use in other European countries.

According to reports, as of the 30th, Germany had 13,321 new cases and 794 deaths in a single day, with a total of more than 2.21 million confirmed cases and 56,000 deaths. Although the number of cases per 100,000 people has dropped by 3 in the past 7 days to 91 cases. The government stated that the number must be less than 50 cases to prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed. In addition, the German Ministry of the Interior said that due to the growing domestic concerns about the mutant virus, it is currently preparing to impose restrictions on the entry of passengers from the United Kingdom, Brazil, and South Africa.

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The U.S. and Russia reach an agreement on extending the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty



On January 26, US President Biden had a telephone conversation with Russian President Putin for the first time after taking office. The Russian Kremlin stated that the two sides agreed to extend the arms control agreement “New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty,” and the US White House also said that the two sides will work on extending the treaty.

Russian Satellite News Agency quoted the Kremlin News Service on the 26th as saying that Putin and Biden reached an agreement on extending the “New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty” during a telephone conversation. The source said: “In the near future, both parties will complete all necessary procedures to ensure that this important international mechanism for mutual restriction of nuclear weapons continues to take effect.”

Reuters reported on the 26th that the White House did not immediately confirm the Kremlin’s statement. However, the White House issued a statement saying that the leaders of the United States and Russia agreed to let their working groups urgently start work on the extension of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty.

The United States and Russia signed the “New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty” in 2010, which aims to limit the number of strategic nuclear warheads and delivery vehicles deployed by the two countries. After the US-Russia “China-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty” expired in 2019, the “New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty” became the only arms control treaty between the two countries. The treaty will expire on February 5, 2021, but the validity of the treaty can be negotiated between the two countries It will be extended at most 5 years later. In 2020, the United States and Russia launched several rounds of negotiations on the extension of the treaty. In October of that year, the two sides proposed to extend the treaty for one year but ultimately failed to finalize the details.

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U.S. COVID-19 patient dies hours after vaccination



A person infected with the new coronavirus in California, USA, died a few hours after being vaccinated with the new coronavirus on the 21st. The cause of death has not been identified, and it is not clear whether the deceased was vaccinated with Modena or Pfizer.

According to Fox News, the Placer County Sheriff’s Office in California announced on Saturday (23rd) that a resident who tested positive for the new coronavirus in December 2020 will be vaccinated on January 21, 2021. Received the vaccine, but died a few hours later.

The sheriff’s office said that at present, many local, state, and federal agencies are actively investigating the case. It is too early to talk about the cause of death, and the results of the investigation are still pending.

According to the report, it is still unclear whether the vaccine for the deceased was Moderna or Pfizer.

According to previous reports, a report issued by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on the 22nd showed that as of January 10, a total of 4,041,396 people in the United States had received the first dose of the covid vaccine developed by Modena in the United States, and a total of 1,266 cases of adverse effects were reported Reaction events (adverse reaction rate is about 0.03%), including 10 allergic reactions. Previously, the center reported that as of December 23, 2020, a total of 1,893,360 people in the United States had received the first dose of Pfizer’s covid vaccine, and a total of 4,393 adverse events were reported, including 21 allergic reactions.

According to data from Johns Hopkins University, in the past month, an average of 423 people died of new coronavirus every day in California. The state has currently recorded 36,362 deaths.

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