Beijing on COVID-19 alert after sudden surge of infections

China has been witnessing surges in its big cities in the past few months including Shanghai, where residents have been in lockdown for four weeks due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Beijing: China’s capital city Beijing is on high COVID-19 alert after the city recorded 21 new community cases in the last 24 hours on Sunday.

Pang Xinghuo, deputy director of the Beijing municipal disease prevention and control center had said that undetected local transmissions started in the city about a week ago, and involved schools, tour groups and families.

“There were hidden transmissions for a week and the infected people came from different backgrounds and a wide range of activities,” Pang said on April 22.

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“Beijing reported 21 positive COVID-19 infections from 4 pm on Saturday to 4 pm on Sunday, including 16 confirmed cases and five silent carriers across five districts,” Global Times reported today.

On Monday, the Beijing municipal government issued a notice encouraging local residents to avoid travel and stay put during the holidays, as the travel rush could increase the risk of accelerating virus transmission, as per Global Times.

China has been witnessing surges in its big cities in the past few months including Shanghai, where residents have been in lockdown for four weeks due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The country’s financial hub, Shanghai, has been facing the worst COVID-19 outbreak and has been desperately seeking medical care and basic supplies like food.

Meanwhile, the Chinese mainland reported 1,566 locally transmitted confirmed COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, of which 1,401 were in Shanghai, according to the National Health Commission’s report Sunday.

Shanghai authorities have imposed draconian lockdown measures since March that have locked 25 million residents in their homes. On April 3, the Chinese government announced the deployment of thousands of military personnel to Shanghai to assist in the mandatory testing of all 25 million residents for the virus that causes COVID-19.

Meanwhile, horrifying videos have emerged showing Shanghai residents screaming from their windows over strict COVID lockdown measures that prevent them from leaving home even for food.

In a clip posted online by a Twitter user that he said was taken by the father of his close friend who reported that “people (are) screaming outside of their windows after a week of total lockdown” because they “can’t even step outside their apartments”. Many screams can be heard from the windows of nearby apartment buildings in the footage, as per news.com.au.

China’s much-publicised ‘zero-covid’ strategy that the government credited for bringing the country out of the pandemic till recently is falling apart as the rapidly mounting cases are again forcing mass lockdowns like those seen in 2020.

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