Asia Virus Latest: First Cases In Rohingya Camps; China Appeals To US

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Here are the latest developments in Asia related to the novel coronavirus pandemic:

- Race to prevent virus 'nightmare' in Rohingya camps -

Emergency teams raced to prevent a coronavirus "nightmare" in the world's largest refugee settlement after the first confirmed cases in a sprawling city of shacks housing nearly a million Rohingya.
Health experts have long warned coronavirus could race through the cramped alley's of the vast refugee camps in Bangladesh

There have long been warnings the virus could race like wildfire through the cramped, sometimes sewage-soaked alleys of the network of 34 camps in southeast Bangladesh.

Most of the refugees have been there since around 750,000 of the Muslim minority fled a 2017 military offensive in neighbouring Myanmar for which its government faces genocide charges at the UN's top court.

- China asks US to 'meet halfway' after Trump threat-

China urged the United States to meet it halfway and strengthen cooperation in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic after President Donald Trump threatened to sever bilateral ties.

Relations between the world's two largest economies have deteriorated in recent weeks, with both sides trading barbs over the origins of the virus that has killed more than 300,000 people.

- Aussies book out Sydney bars as curbs eased -
Beers were once again being served in Sydney's bars Friday, though the city centre remained quiet

Sydney's bars and restaurants opened their doors to customers as a weeks-long lockdown eased, with owners hoping a busy booking calendar will make up for restrictions on crowd numbers.

Although social distancing and work-from-home arrangements kept the city's streets quiet on Friday morning, venues said locals were eager to get back into bars and restaurants over the weekend under the relaxed rules.

- Typhoon forces thousands from homes in virus-hit Philippines -
Residents sift through their wrecked homes in the Philippines after a typhoon roared through

Tens of thousands of people were forced into cramped shelters by the powerful storm pounding the Philippines, making social distancing nearly impossible as the nation battles the coronavirus pandemic.

Typhoon Vongfong flattened flimsy coastal homes when it roared ashore on central Samar island on Thursday, but then weakened into a severe tropical storm on its path north to the capital Manila.

- Singapore rolls out swab van as it ramps up tests of foreign workers -

Singapore has rolled out a mobile swab station as it seeks to test the more than 300,000 foreign workers living in dormitories in the city-state.

The specially-equipped ambulance can be swiftly deployed and allows health care workers to carry out swab tests on people as they stand outside the vehicle.

The city-state has reported over 26,000 infections, one of the highest tallies in Asia, with most cases among low-paid migrant workers living in crowded dorms.

- Japan to conduct antibody tests -
Antibody tests will be carried out in Japan, giving an indication of how widely coronavirus has spread

Japan's health minister said the nation will conduct antibody testing from next month for about 10,000 people.

The test results should help experts better understand the extent of the coronavirus's spread in Japan, with local media reporting it may also shed light on whether "herd immunity" can be achieved.

- Kohli could be stranded when India resume training -

Top Indian players Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma could be left stranded in pandemic-stricken Mumbai when senior players start training again, an official has warned.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) could allow outdoor training as early as next week when a further easing of the government's nationwide coronavirus lockdown is to start.

- Social-distancing a pipe dream in Hong Kong's 'cubicle flats' -

Squashed inside the 50-square-foot living space she shares with her son, Wong Mei-ying knows social-distancing during the coronavirus pandemic is all but impossible.

The 70-year-old Hong Konger lives in one of the city's notorious "cubicle flats" -- subdivided apartments that make up some of the most densely packed buildings in the world.