No Russia-China trains to be cancelled

The Russian Railways Ministry has no plans so far to cancel trains to China because of the atypical pneumonia threat, Valery Zudin, the press secretary with the ministry's Passenger Traffic Directorate, announced on Tuesday.

"The tickets are still on sale, and any passenger can buy one and travel to China," he said.

There are two trains running between Moscow and Beijing today, one Russian and the other Chinese. Each train runs weekly and transports up to 300 passengers. There is also a local train transporting up to 700 passengers daily across the Russian-Chinese border by the Grodekovo border crossing.

In the meantime, the ministry has introduced extra measures to keep the disease off the Russian territory, namely thorough cleaning and disinfection of trains, presence of medical workers on board, instructing of trainmasters and conductors, availability of disinfectant agents and masks, etc.

Zudin said that although the trains were allowed to run freely, the local authorities could lay limitations on passenger traffic if necessary.

Earlier, the Railways Ministry had said there might be fewer trains travelling to China in the next months because of atypical pneumonia. At the Grodekovo crossing, for instance, the traffic flow had dropped 30%.

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