Moscow Bus Drivers Told To Report Suspected Chinese Passengers, Amid Coronavirus Fears
By RFE/RL's Russian Service February 20, 2020
MOSCOW -- A public transport worker in Moscow has told RFE/RL that all drivers of buses, trams, and trolley buses in the Russian capital have been instructed to stop their vehicles and make all passengers disembark if they suspect any of their passengers are from China.
The public transport driver, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told RFE/RL on February 20 that the measure was aimed at stopping the possible spread of the coronavirus from China.
He said Moscow public transport drivers who suspect they have a Chinese passenger are supposed to contact a police dispatcher and wait for the arrival of authorities before continuing with their routes.
The revelations about the policy emerged a day after Russian media and social-network users reported that the Moscow City Transportation Agency, Mosgortrans, had instructed its drivers to report suspected Chinese nationals among their passengers.
There was no immediate comment about the reports from Mosgortrans officials.
On February 18, Russian authorities announced that Chinese citizens would be temporarily blocked from entering Russia beginning on February 20 in an attempt to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
More than 74,000 people have been infected with the coronavirus in China and hundreds more in nearly 30 other countries.
According to information released by Beijing on February 19, the death toll from the coronavirus outbreak in China has reached 2,118.
With reporting by Podyom
Copyright (c) 2020. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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