A Chinese expert gives instructions on washing hands in Baghdad, Iraq, on March 16, 2020. A Chinese expert team on Monday delivered medical aid to Iraq as part of China's efforts to increase Iraq's capabilities of combating the spread of COVID-19, or novel coronavirus. (Xinhua/Khalil Dawood)
BAGHDAD, March 16 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese expert team on Monday delivered medical aid to Iraq as part of China's efforts to increase Iraq's capabilities of combating the spread of COVID-19, or novel coronavirus.
At a ceremony at the Chinese embassy in the Iraqi capital Baghdad, Tao Zhongquan, head of the Chinese team, handed over the aid, including lab equipment and medical supplies, to Hassan al-Tamimi, director general of the Medical City facility in Baghdad.
"The goal of the visit of the Chinese expert team to Baghdad is to share the Chinese experience with their Iraqi counterparts," Chinese Ambassador to Iraq Zhang Tao said, adding that a new laboratory will be established to diagnose the novel coronavirus next week.
Iraq's Health Ministry on Monday confirmed one more death from COVID-19 and six new cases, bringing the total number of the infected in the country to 133.
"We came to Baghdad to transfer our expertise to Iraq," Tao said. "As long as we make joint efforts, we have complete confidence in overcoming it."
For his part, al-Tamimi hailed China's efforts to help Iraq, asserting that China has great experience in treatment and diagnosis of the coronavirus. After a nationwide campaign to fight the COVID-19 outbreak launched since late January, China has so far largely achieved success in taking the epidemic under control.
"In the coming days we will witness more cooperation in the field of training the Iraqi physicians and the medical workers on how to treat this disease," al-Tamimi added.
He believed that the Iraqi medics will make progress with the Chinese support through learning how to create the mechanisms of preventing the virus transmission, gaining better knowledge of its initial diagnosis and treatment, and following up the patients after recovery.
Earlier in the day, the Chinese team visited a community center for Palestinian refugees in Baghdad, giving health instructions on avoiding infection with the coronavirus, including how to wear facial masks, avoid crowded places, and wash hands often.
Yasin al-Ma'mouri, head of the Iraqi Red Crescent Society, told Xinhua that the Chinese help will have tremendous impact on the efforts of the Iraqi health authorities to control the new coronavirus pandemic.
Mohammed Khairi, a resident from the Palestinian community in Baladiyat neighborhood in eastern Baghdad, told Xinhua that he benefited a lot from the advices given by the Chinse experts on how to prevent the infection.
On March 7, the seven-member Chinese expert team arrived in Baghdad to help Iraq fight the novel coronavirus. The team is expected to stay in the country for one month.