Malaysia places entire KL condo under enhanced lockdown
3,500 residents of tower linked to 17 cases not allowed to leave their homes until April 13
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has placed an entire Kuala Lumpur condo in Jalan Munshi Abdullah under an enhanced movement control order (MCO) after authorities linked 17 coronavirus cases to it.
This means the 3,500 mainly foreign residents in the 502-unit Menara City One condominium tower will not be allowed visitors.
Residents will also not be allowed to leave the condo and all businesses, except for those selling essentials, will cease.
Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said: "The residents can order food deliveries to be dropped off at the security posts at the lobby. There will be a medical base at the tower and all entrances and exits to the tower will be closed off."
He also said that police, army and Malaysian Civil Defence Force personnel will be guarding the closed-off area, The Star reported.
"Based on the number of cases and advice from the Health Ministry, it was decided that the enhanced MCO will be in place from March 31 to April 13. This will allow the tracking of cases from unit to unit within the 14 days," said Mr Ismail Sabri in a statement yesterday.
Malaysia reported 156 new cases and three deaths yesterday, taking the total number of infections to 2,626, which continues to be the highest in South-east Asia, Reuters reported.
The Ministry of Health said the virus has so far killed 37 people in the country.
Malaysia has also started sanitising some high-risk areas in several states as part of a nationwide disinfection operation beginning yesterday aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus, the national Bernama news agency reported.
The Kuala Lumpur City Hall on Sunday conducted a mass disinfection exercise in the capital, particularly around the Sri Petaling area where a religious gathering at a mosque in February led to the spread of most of the country's coronavirus infections.
Other states that carried disinfection operations include Perak, Melaka and Selangor.
Popular tourist resort island Phuket, in southern Thailand, began a partial lockdown yesterday, when it started closing beaches and all points of entry and exit except air travel until the end of next month.
According to the Health Ministry, 49 cases have been reported in Phuket, making it the province with the highest number of cases outside of the Bangkok metropolitan area.
The Phuket Communicable Disease Committee yesterday confirmed nine new confirmed cases, of which eight were from the popular Patong Beach including a French tourist, The Phuket News reported.
Overall, Thailand reported 136 newcases (including Phuket) and two new deaths yesterday, raising the total number of infections to 1,524 and fatalities to nine.
The new cases were scattered across 18 of Thailand's 77 provinces. The capital Bangkok now accounts for nearly half of the cases overall, Reuters reported.
"Cases in Bangkok remain high, but numbers in the provinces are fluctuating," said Mr Taweesin Wisanuyothin, a spokesman for the government's Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.
The government introduced a state of emergency last week, banning most foreigners from entry and closing public facilities and businesses in major cities until April 30.