China locks down the city of 9 million as Covid cases surge
China -China ordered a lockdown on Friday in the northeastern Changchun city of nine million people amid a surge in Covid-19 cases. For the first time in two years, China’s daily Covid cases reached over 10,000.
Under the lockdown norms, people have been advised to stay at home and undergo three rounds of mass testing. Only one family member can go out every two days to buy food and other necessary items.
Changchun is the capital of Jilin province. The city is an important industrial base for the country. However, the government told residents to work from home. Reportedly, non-essential businesses have been closed and transport links suspended.
According to health authorities, the country will be introducing rapid antigen tests for the first time because of the spike in Covid-19 cases. Rapid tests were restricted in China. However, the National Health Commission stated on Friday that the rapid antigen test kits will now be available for citizens. It can be used easily at home.
The Covid-19 outbreak in China
Several cities have been reporting a surge in Covid-19 cases. The government also imposed a lockdown in Yucheng and Shanghai. On Friday, China reported 397 Covid cases, 98 of the cases in Jilin province that surrounds Changchun.
The asymptomatic infections caused by the Omicron variant of Covid-19 have driven China’s daily count of Covid cases to an all-time high. Just two cases were detected in Changchun city. However, under China’s “zero tolerance” policy to the Covid-19 pandemic, the authorities ordered that it will lock down any area where more than one case of Covid-19 will be detected.
A partial lockdown has already been imposed in Changchun city. The Chinese authorities also ordered the closure of the Jilin Agricultural Science and Technology University after a cluster of infections were reported on campus. In 2020, China was the first country in the world to impose a lockdown in the city of Wuhan.