Xi expresses sympathy to Polish leader
China Daily

Chinese president wishes counterpart an early recovery from coronavirus

President Xi Jinping extended his sympathy to the Polish President Andrzej Duda on Sunday after it was confirmed that Duda has been infected with COVID-19.

In a message to Duda, Xi said he wished him an early recovery.

Duda tested positive for the novel coronavirus on Friday. Duda's spokesperson Blazej Spychalski confirmed his infection on social media on Saturday morning.

"The president is feeling fine," Spychalski tweeted. "We are in constant contact with the relevant medical services."

Duda and most of his staff have been quarantined. On Saturday Duda apologized to those who must quarantine because of having had contact with him.

In a recording published on Twitter he said he was experiencing no COVID-19 symptoms "but unfortunately, the test result is absolutely unambiguous".

"I would like to apologize to all those who are exposed to quarantine procedures because of meeting me in recent days. If I had had any symptoms of coronavirus, please believe me, all meetings would have been canceled."

Duda's diagnosis comes amid a surge in confirmed new cases of COVID-19 and virus-related deaths in Poland. More than 240,000 people in the country have been confirmed with the virus since the start of the pandemic, with more than 4,300 deaths.

New infections reached a daily record of 13,632 on Friday, and new restrictions went into force on Saturday. The curbs imposed include a two-week shutdown of restaurants and bars.

Schools will remain open for children up to third grade, with older students moving to distance learning.

Appeal for elderly

The government sent text messages to the public on Saturday morning urging them to stay home and help the elderly.

Duda was working until the test result came in. He visited the National Stadium in Warsaw on Friday to inspect work on a field hospital, which has an initial capacity of 500 beds and can be expanded to 1,000 beds. The temporary hospital was due to become operational over the weekend.

On Friday Duda also awarded state honors to the winner of the French Open women's singles tennis tournament this year, Iga Swiatek, and her father. Swiatek is among those who have gone into quarantine.

During all Duda's public appearances he wore a mask, and he wore gloves when he met Swiatek.

One candidate medicine for the virus, developed from the blood plasma of former patients, is now undergoing tests in the eastern Polish town of Lublin.

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