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Inside the squalid Singapore migrant camp feared to be rife with COVID-19

Video credit: Reuters Studio
Published on April 6, 2020 - Duration: 01:11s

Inside the squalid Singapore migrant camp feared to be rife with COVID-19

Singapore has ordered the quarantine of nearly 20,000 migrant workers after a spike in cases were linked to two dormitories housing migrants.

Joe Davies reports.

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Inside the squalid Singapore migrant camp feared to be rife with COVID-19

Thousands of migrant workers live in these cramped and squalid dormitories in Singapore.

An unpleasant place at the best of times, those living here now fear it's become a hotbed for coronavirus infection.

Singapore has quarantined nearly 20,000 workers in two dorms after they were linked to at least 90 infections.

Several migrant workers told Reuters they sleep in cramped 12-bed bunk rooms, share toilets and basins often blocked, and that cockroaches and overflowing bins are a common sight.

The government said the quarantine action was needed to prevent further transmission in the city-state, which is closing schools and offices this week due a spike in cases.

And they claim to have taken measures to reduce worker interaction, and ensure that the workers receive their wages, meals and medical support.

But Amnesty International said the quarantine was "a recipe for disaster." When Reuters visited the site on Monday (April 6), six police cars lined the road outside the complex and a police tent had been erected by the entrance.

The only activity came from the coming and going of several ambulances.

The manager of the dormitory did not immediately comment when contacted by Reuters, nor did the government manpower ministry.

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