Whistleblowers were arrested in China for attempting to warn others about the coronavirus before it began to spread across the world according to the Mirror. The eight whistleblowers were arrested for “spreading rumours”.
A UK expert on China claimed that the whistleblowers were warning about the virus about a month ago.
This news has come in as the quickly spreading virus has become declared a global emergency by the World Health Organization.
Coronavirus has now taken the lives of approximately 200 people and there are over 8,000 cases.
On Friday, The National Health Commission noted that 43 more deaths have occurred due to the virus and all of them but one were in the Hubei province where the outbreak originally occurred.
When speaking with the Mirror, Dr Yukteshwar Kumar from the UK’s University of Bath said that the state had allegedly silenced people who attempted to warn others about the virus.
Dr Kumar said that the outbreak could have been minimized if people learned about it towards the end of December.
“They were asked to sign a confession stating that they will not spread false news. If they had taken steps earlier the situation could have been better because they did know about it,” said Dr Kumar.
“People could have been made aware in late December. The authorities could have stopped people travelling earlier.”
“I highly appreciate the efforts made by the government of China in locking down the whole city. However, if they’d listened to the advice of these eight people and some scientists the situation would have been perhaps better.”
Dr Kumar obtained a legal document that is allegedly signed as well as fingerprinted by Chinese citizens. The document reportedly had them promise not to talk about the outbreak.