Lockdown of 'non-essential' shops empties Hanoi streets

By Giang Huy   March 29, 2020 | 11:21 am GMT+7
Following the Prime Minister's order to shut down 'non-essential' shops until April 15, except for those selling food, medicine and fuel, amid the coronavirus pandemic, Hanoi’s streets are deserted.
On March 26 silence reigned over normally bustling Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square in the old quarter at the heart of the capital. Bars, karaoke parlors, gyms, and cafes are all closed until April 5.

Silence reigned over normally bustling Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square in the Old Quarter at the heart of the capital these days. Bars, karaoke parlors, gyms, and cafes are all closed until April 15.

On nearby Dinh Tien Hoang Street in Hoan Kiem District, home to many street eateries and the famous Cafe Dinh, all stores and restaurants are closed. The sidewalk looks uncharacteristically bare without its usual crowd of iced-tea vendors, tourists, and passersby.

On nearby Dinh Tien Hoang Street in Hoan Kiem District, home to many street eateries and the famous Cafe Dinh, all stores and restaurants are closed. The sidewalk looks uncharacteristically bare without its usual crowd of iced-tea vendors, tourists, and passersby.

All eateries, coffee shops and souvenir stores on Dinh Liet Street near the iconic Hoan Kiem Lake are also closed.

All eateries, coffee shops and souvenir stores on Dinh Liet Street near the iconic Hoan Kiem Lake are also closed.

The area around St. Joseph’s Cathedral, another hot spot in the old quarter, is also shuttered, and the usually teeming streets are quiet.

The area around St. Joseph’s Cathedral, another hot spot in the Old Quarter, is shuttered, and the usually teeming streets are quiet.

The Ministry of Health has advised seniors and those with underlying medical conditions to stay home and not go to public places or come into contact with others. Many of them are complying, only occasionally peeking out.  

The Ministry of Health has advised seniors and those with underlying medical conditions to stay home and not go to public places or come into contact with others. Many of them are complying, only occasionally peeking out.  

An art gallery on Hang Dao Street is filled with colorful paintings but customers are keeping away.

An art gallery on Hang Dao Street is filled with colorful paintings but customers are keeping away.

Ward administrative officials serve notices on businesses on Hang Bo Street to close.

Ward administrative officials serve notices on businesses on Hang Bo Street to close.

A coffee shop on Ta Hien Street has a ‘Takeaway only’ sign.

A coffee shop on Ta Hien Street has a ‘Takeaway only’ sign.

A roast pork stall on Hang Buom Street closes its front but continues to do business inside (?? Door’s wide open!!).

A roast pork stall on Hang Buom Street does business inside.

Foreign tourists face difficulty in finding hotels, restaurants and places of entertainment.     On March 25, at a meeting with the National Steering Committee on the Prevention and Control of Covid-19, Nguyen Duc Chung, chairman of the Hanoi people’s committee, ordered the closure of all businesses except those selling foods, medicines and fuel until April 5.

Foreign tourists face difficulty in finding hotels, restaurants and places of entertainment. 

Starting March 22, the country has suspended entry for all foreign nationals, including those of Vietnamese origin and family members with visa waivers and halted all international flights from March 25. Only Vietnamese nationals and foreigners having diplomatic and official passports such as business managers, experts and high-skilled workers will be allowed to enter the country at this time, and all entrants will be quarantined for 14 days.

Of Vietnam's 179 confirmed Covid-19 cases, 21 have been discharged after treatment. The pandemic has killed more than 30,000 people in 199 countries and territories.

 
 
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