People in China are welcoming the Year of the Rat. It’s not an animal many people associate with positive characteristics. Quite often it’s associated with spreading disease. But it can also sniff out disease. And it has other qualities, too.
The Lunar New Year is one of the most important events celebrated by Chinese people worldwide. Here's what the year of the Metal Rat symbolizes — and how the usual festivities are now disrupted by the deadly coronavirus.
Many celebrations to mark one of China's most important holidays, and the Year of the Rat, have been called off as the coronavirus death toll mounts. Fear and travel restrictions are keeping people at home.
China is taking unprecedented steps aimed at containing the SARS-like virus outbreak. Authorities are seeking to control the spread of the disease in the lead up to the world's biggest annual human migration.
A mysterious virus that began in China has already spread to several East Asian countries. Experts fear that Lunar New Year travelers will take the virus with them and cause further outbreaks. Julian Ryall reports.
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