China goes back to lockdown amid worst Covid-19 outbreak

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The country identified 3,507 new locally spread cases in the last 24 hours, up from 1,337 a day earlier, The Washington Post reported citing China’s National Health Commission….reports Asian Lite News

China reported two times more new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday from the previous day as the country faces, by far, the biggest outbreak since the pandemic began.

Nearly 30 million people were under lockdown across China on Tuesday, media reported.

The country identified 3,507 new locally spread cases in the last 24 hours, up from 1,337 a day earlier, The Washington Post reported citing China’s National Health Commission.

China has imposed various rules to keep the COVID-19 cases away from the country since the deadly initial outbreak in the city of Wuhan in early 2020 but the fast-spreading variant known as “stealth omicron” is testing China’s zero-tolerance strategy.

The country’s COVID-19 cases are low as compared to elsewhere in the world but in the first two weeks of March, China recorded over 10,000 cases which exceeded the previous flare-ups.

Till now, no new deaths were reported in the multiple outbreaks across China. Most of the new cases were reported in northeast China’s Jilin province, where 2,601 were reported, according to The Washington Post.

After recording the highest COVID-19 cases in Jilin, the authorities there have barred residents from leaving the province and travelling between cities within it.

The nine million residents of Changchun, the provincial capital and an auto manufacturing hub, have been locked down since Friday as authorities conduct repeated rounds of mass testing both there and in the city of Jilin.

Meanwhile, Guangdong province in the southeast, where the metropolis and major tech centre of Shenzhen has been locked down since Sunday, reported 48 new cases.

Amid a rapid resurgence of COVID-19 cases, Shanghai-based renowned infectious disease expert Zhang Wenhong remarked that it is “not time for China to lie flat” and debate over zero-COVID, and instead Beijing should take the period as an opportunity to lay out anti-epidemic strategies that are complete and sustainable.

He made these remarks in a post on the Chinese social media platform Sina Weibo on Monday. He said that it is “the most difficult period” for China since the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

Zhang noted that it is “still not time for China to lie flat.” “We should have clearer methods for the future rather than debating over zero-COVID or co-existence,” he was quoted as saying by the Chinese state media tabloid Global Times.

The state media reported that Chinese observers warned local governments to avoid taking extreme measures such as city lockdowns, as they would harm the local economy. (ANI)

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