First 10 of 30 isolation units provided by China to the FSM are ready for use in Pohnpei

By Bill Jaynes

The Kaselehlie Press


October 16, 2020

IMG 7277Pohnpei—This afternoon, the government of the People’s Republic of China turned over 10, ready-to-go isolation units to Pohnpei State.  The fully modular units were fitted out on the premises of the former Misko’s Beach. Each unit has two hospital beds and a full bathroom with shower. Each unit is separately air conditioned.

The units are not intended to be used for quarantine purposes but for isolation of patients who present with symptoms of COVID-19.

The 10 units installed and ready for use in Pohnpei are just part of the 30 total units donated to the FSM at a cost of $1.2 million.  The donation was provided by the Central Government of the People’s Republic of China, and the Governments of Guandong Province and Zhonshang City.  The units have been delivered and landed in Pohnpei. 12 will be forwarded to Chuuk for use there. Yap and Kosrae will receive four each.  The Pohnpei units were fitted out and set by China Construction Science and Industry Corporation whose Project Manager gave a presentation on the construction of the units in China, which due to lighting in the mid-afternoon sun was impossible to see.

China’s Ambassador to the FSM Huang Zheng reminded the gathered crowd at the handover ceremony that China bore the first impact of COVID-19. “(The) Virus respects no boundaries and is the common enemy of the human race,” he said.  “Both the fight to rein in the virus and the endeavor to fend off a deepening global recession call for the international community to stand in unity and engage in cooperation.  They also call for multilateralism, support for the leading role of the World Health Organization in promoting global cooperation against COVID-19 and resolute opposition to any attempt at stigmatization, politicizing or labeling the virus.  Right under guidance of this notion that we are in the same boat, China and the FSM have been standing in solidarity, offering mutual assistance and working together to fend off the virus since the outbreak of the pandemic.”

“…Nothing we do with China Aid is out of geopolitical calculation, or in pursuit of economic gains, or with any political strings attached,” he continued. “The sole purpose of China Aid is to work with other countries toward the building of a Community with a Shared Future for Humanity, which benefits the well-being of the people all over the world.”

He said that China Aid operates under four principles. He said that first China Aid respects the will of the recipient countries’ governments and people and never interferes in their internal affairs. Second, it operates for mutual benefit.  Third, it operates with openness; lastly, sustainability.

FSM Secretary for Health and Social Affairs Livingston Taulung spoke on behalf of the FSM Government saying that the FSM will within a matter of days or weeks begin bringing home its citizens. He said that the isolation units provide one more step toward readiness for that task, something that each State has been working toward since the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus.

FSM Secretary for Foreign Affairs Kandhi Elieisar and Ambassador Huang closed the hand-over ceremony by signing the agreements between the two countries for the isolation units.  Afterward, a tour of the units was conducted.

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