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COVID-19: Chaos at US airports after new health screenings to control coronavirus

Associated Press of Pakistan 09:25 PM | 15 Mar, 2020
COVID-19: Chaos at US airports after new health screenings to control coronavirus

NEW YORK – Airports across the United States were thrown into chaos Saturday as workers tried to enforce the Trump administration’s new health screenings for people returning from Europe, as part of efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus, according to American media reports.

Travelers faced hours of delays, long lines and jam-packed hallways as workers questioned them about their medical history and checked them for symptoms.

The administration announced the “enhanced entry screenings” Friday.

Passengers on flights from 26 countries in Europe are being routed through 13 U.S. airports, where workers check their medical histories, examine them for symptoms and instruct them to self-quarantine for 14 days.

But just hours after taking effect, the measures designed to prevent new infections in the United States had created the exact conditions that facilitate the spread of the highly contagious virus, with throngs of people standing shoulder-to-shoulder in hours-long bottlenecks, according to experts.

As confusion and anxiety spread, the debacle threatened to deepen the coronavirus crisis for the Trump administration, which has struggled to mount a coherent response to the pandemic or convey a consistent message to the public about what the federal government is doing to mitigate the outbreak.

The scenes at the airports — captured in an outpouring of angry social media posts — bore a striking resemblance to the botched implementation in early 2017 of President Donald Trump’s travel ban targeting citizens from predominantly Muslim countries, which triggered chaos and protests at United States airports as travelers from the Middle East were detained or sent home with almost no warning.

Saturday’s confusion came as concern spread about the coronavirus pandemic, which has now been identified in more than 2,700 people in the United States and has prompted Trump to declare a national emergency.

Earlier, Spain announced a nationwide lockdown as France moved to close all nonessential businesses — including cafes, restaurants and movie theaters — in the latest testament to the coronavirus pandemic’s profound impact on daily life around the globe.

Upheaval continued in the United States, as well, on Saturday as Georgia followed Louisiana’s lead in delaying its presidential primary and three states reported their first coronavirus-related deaths.

The United States will be banning travel from the United Kingdom and Ireland beginning Monday at midnight, officials said.

“At this time, we are working quickly with our partners to operationalize a plan which will outline where these travelers will be routed and what the screening process will be,” Marcus Hubbard, a spokesman for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was quoted as saying.

President Trump also said his administration was considering domestic travel restrictions for some hot spots.

A surge in coronavirus patients is threatening to swamp U.S. hospitals, as Oregon, Virginia, Louisiana and New York all reported their first coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday.

Ten U.S. service members have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, along with one Defence Department civilian and two contractors, military officials said.

Associated Press of Pakistan
Associated Press of Pakistan

Associated Press of Pakistan Corporation (APPC) - Pakistan's Premier News Agency

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KARACHI - Following are the foreign currency exchange rates for US Dollar, Saudi Riyal, UK Pound Sterling, U.A.E. Dirham, European Euro, and other foreign currencies in Pakistan open market on February 9, 2023 (Thursday).

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)

Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar ‎USD 270.25 271.25
Euro EUR 290.11 290.71
UK Pound Sterling GBP 326.85 327.55
U.A.E Dirham AED 73.49 73.79
Saudi Riyal SAR 71,93 72.23
Australian Dollar AUD 184.3 186.7
Bahrain Dinar BHD 732.35 740.35
Canadian Dollar CAD 205 207.2
China Yuan CNY 40.72 41.12
Danish Krone DKK 39.92 40.32
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.08 35.43
Indian Rupee INR 3.35 3.46
Japanese Yen JPY 2 2.16
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 900.32 909.32
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 64.65 65.25
New Zealand Dollar NZD 173.63 175.63
Norwegians Krone NOK 27.12 27.42
Omani Riyal OMR 715.53 723.57
Qatari Riyal ‎QAR 75.64 76.34
Singapore Dollar SGD 208.03 210.03
Swedish Korona SEK 26.1 26.4
Swiss Franc CHF 298.06 300.56
Thai Bhat THB 8.25 8.4

KARACHI – The price of a single tola of 24-karat gold in Pakistan is Rs193,700 on Thursday. The price of 10 grams of 24k gold was recorded at Rs166,070.

Likewise, 10 grams of 22k gold were being traded for Rs167,318 while a single tola of 22-karat gold was being sold at Rs 195,157.

Note: The gold rate in Pakistan is fluctuating according to the international market so the price is never been fixed. The below rates are provided by local gold markets and Sarafa Markets of different cities.

City Gold Silver
Lahore PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Karachi PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Islamabad PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Peshawar PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Quetta PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Sialkot PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Attock PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Gujranwala PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Jehlum PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Multan PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Bahawalpur PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Gujrat PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Nawabshah PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Chakwal PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Hyderabad PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Nowshehra PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Sargodha PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Faisalabad PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350
Mirpur PKR 193,700 PKR 2,350

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