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CNN 10

CNN Returns To Wuhan, China A Year After Coronavirus Outbreak; Questions Being Raised About Upcoming Olympics In Tokyo, Japan. Aired 4- 4:10a ET

Aired January 25, 2021 - 04:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hi, I`m Carl Azuz. Welcome back to CNN 10. Then and now is a phrase that relates to today`s story. The world has gone

through extraordinary changes in one year. On Friday, January 24th, 2020 there was a coronavirus outbreak occurring in east central China, in the

city of Wuhan.

We reported that day the World Health Organization said the outbreak was not yet a public health emergency of international concern. The

organization changed that six days later officially declaring an emergency. We reported last January 24th that the U.S. Centers of Disease Control said

Americans traveling in China should avoid Wuhan.

Seven days later, the Trump Administration said anyone who`d been in China within the previous two weeks would not be allowed to enter the United

States unless they were U.S. residents coming home. There`d been fewer than 10 cases of coronavirus identified in America by that time. Since then,

health officials have reported over 25 million positive tests in the U.S. and more than 99 million worldwide. In the first city hit by this disease,

signs of recovery and scars of impact are everywhere.


DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is a city whose name evokes mystery, allegations of cover up and agony, Wuhan, China. CNN returning to this, the

original epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. On January 23rd, 2020, this metropolis of more than 11 million residents locked down. We left hours

before beginning a two-week quarantine in Beijing.

For 76 days, Wuhan remained sealed off. And here we are again, back one year later, the Huanan Seafood Market. This at one point was believed to

have been by Chinese authorities the ground zero of this outbreak. This time last year, security had ushered us away within minutes of reporting.

Now, January 2021, no security here. We`ve been walking around for several minutes. They don`t seem to care. That was until we started looking inside.

We noticed some people working behind the gate. Suddenly a seemingly random passerby on a bike shouted at us, saying don`t be sneaky. He (inaudible)

identified himself as (Bailey) as working for the government and I was to walk around the try the entrance.


CULVER: He said apparently, we can go in. So we`ll see if we can actually get inside the market. But, I`m going to ask this guy. Can you go in? You

can`t go inside. Tell him we have a COVID test, a negative COVID test. OK. No pictures. So clearly a bit sensitive. Perhaps it`s because we`re

foreigners or journalists.

The virus` origin has become highly politicized. U.S. officials accusing China of covering up and allowing the virus to spread. China, defensive,

saying the Trump Administration was deflecting blame for its own mishandling. A team from the WHO is now in Wuhan, tasked with trying to

find out the truth and yet geopolitics aside, the human suffering is universal.

Yong Min (ph) spoke with us knowing she could face pressure from officials but a mother who`s lost her only daughter has no more to lose. When I sat

down you thanked me for getting the truth out. What is the truth as you know it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE TRANSLATED: The local officials did not tell us about the pandemic, she said. If measures were taken, I would not have sent my

child to the hospital which was the source of the infection. Last January Yong`s (ph) 24-year-old daughter had been receiving treatment for cancer.

She contracted COVID-19 and died in early February. When I speak about this some parts of my heart still ache, she said.

CULVER: Amidst the deep pain, we also encountered moments of hope in our return. On the eve of the lockdown last year, we visited this fruit market.

This woman selling sugar cane told me at the time that she was terrified. She stayed, fearing the financial burden. Twelve months later, we met


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE TRANSLATED: At that time, I was crying all the time she told me. We were suffering and scared.

CULVER: Above her facemask, the pain still visible in her eyes. She says, the people of Wuhan are resilient likening them to heroes. I`m so glad to

see you in person and to know that you made it through the lockdown and you`re healthy. The market mood, remarkably different from last year.

Business bustling. People much more at ease. Would you say Wuhan is back open and on the path to recovery?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE TRANSLATED: It`s not just starting from now, he says. It started very early to be honest. In my opinion, Wuhan had already begun to

recover since mid to late March.

CULVER: Delivery driver Lau Gi (ph) has become well known on Chinese social media as he chronicled life during the lockdown. The then and now are

striking. A city desolate amidst the lockdown followed by a summer of packed pool party images that shocked a socially distanced world outside of

China. And a New Year`s celebration that brought Wuhan residents shoulder to shoulder.

Though with new cluster outbreaks in the north of China, many here in Wuhan are once again wearing facemasks being cautious of the lingering unknowns.

And still surrounded by the haunting memories of a lockdown that kept millions of residents along with their grief sealed inside. For some only

12 months later, it is just beginning to surface. David Culver, CNN, Wuhan.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. What was the first Asian city ever to host the Olympic Games? Seoul, South Korea, Tokyo, Japan, Beijing, China, or New

Delhi, India. In 1964, Tokyo became the first Asian city ever to host the Olympics.

The question now is if the city will ever host the 2020 Summer Olympics. The games were originally scheduled to begin last July but four months

before that they were postponed because of concerns about the spread of the coronavirus. Now there are officially scheduled to begin on July 23rd of

this year and Olympic organizers have said that if they don`t take place then. They`ll be cancelled all together instead of being postponed again.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Six months until the Tokyo Olympics, the outlook is grim. The host city in a state of emergency. Japan struggling with a severe

surge in COVID-19 cases. Speculation grows around whether the games could be held in the middle of a pandemic. "The Times" of London reports the

Japanese government has privately concluded that the Tokyo Olympics will have to be cancelled citing an unnamed senior government official.

The International and Japanese Olympic Committees call the report preposterous and categorically untrue. Earlier on Friday, Japanese Prime

Minister Yoshihide Suga reaffirmed his commitment to hold the games as scheduled.

YOSHIHIDE SUGA, PRIME MINISTER OF JAPAN: It will be a symbol of humanity overcoming the novel coronavirus. We will be well prepared on the measures

for the infection.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But Dick Pound (ph), the longest serving member of the International Olympic Committee isn`t 100 percent sure.

DICK POUND, MEMBER OF INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE: Confident but not -- not -- not -- it`s not a guarantee of course and -- and everyone

understands that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Cancellation would be a crippling scenario for Japan. More than $25 billion spent in national pride are on the line. I`m at the

top of Shibuya Scramble Square, a new state of the art skyscraper built in anticipation of the Olympics. In fact, this entire Shibuya district has

been getting a complete makeover. New buildings, landscaping and even new subway lines.

For years, Tokyo has been redeveloping, waiting to show all this off to an influx of tourists for the Olympics. Yuki Ohama (ph) manages a souvenir

shop in this tower. He said without the Olympics and the tourists, it would dramatically hurt our business.

It`s clear the games will not breathe the economic boost Japan was hoping for. Meanwhile, public support has fallen dramatically. Seventy-seven

percent of people in Japan think the games should be cancelled or further postponed according to a poll by national broadcaster NHK.

Iko Suko (ph), a member of a anti-Olympics group argues that the games are a wasteful spectacle. She said, the government is obsessed with hosting the

Olympics. It`s becoming clearer during this coronavirus disaster, the Olympics would sacrifice people`s lives.

Japan`s prime minister says the Summer Games will bring hope and courage to the world. A lot of that courage will be needed as each day the July 23rd

opening date grows closer and each day more fall sick with COVID-19.


AZUZ: Quick, count the elk. We`ll give you a second. OK. That`s good. If you didn`t say about 4,200, you`re wrong. At least that`s what one

biologist counted from these pictures. There were major wildfires in Colorado last year. So wildlife officials wanted to see how bad the impact

was on herds of elk. The good news, officials who use GPS technology to count the animals, say their herds appear to be in good shape.

Which is "elkciting" in itself. There are thousands of their elk which is what "elks PERTs" investigators want to see. Call it a search for antlers.

Call it a cattle call. But even if the elk themselves wanted to "hoof" it made for some puns as smooth as "selk".

And that`s "elksacttly" what`s it all about "deer". I`m Carl Azuz. First shout out of the week goes out to St. Anthony, Idaho because that`s where

we heard from South Freemont High School. Want a shout out? Please subscribe and leave a comment at