New record for the number of cases, the country confines six million people

The health crisis is accelerating further China. The daily number of cases Covid-19 has reached a new record in the country, announced on Thursday the authorities who are trying to stem the spread of the virus by carrying out strict confinements, mass tests and travel restrictions.

China recorded 31,444 cases on Wednesday, of which 27,517 are asymptomatic, the national health bureau said. These new figures are higher than the 29,317 infections recorded in mid-April, when Shanghai – the third most populous city in the world – was under lockdown and its residents were struggling to buy food and access medical care.

Often vague and changing restrictions

Beijing has been experiencing an epidemic outbreak in recent days. Dozens of residential buildings have been confined and companies are generalizing teleworking. The Chinese capital announced on Wednesday nearly 1,500 new positive cases (the vast majority asymptomatic) for 22 million inhabitants. A level never reached in the city since the start of the pandemic, but which remains very low according to international criteria.

Zhengzhou, a city in central China that hosts a huge iPhone factory, on Thursday ordered the confinement of six million people after an outbreak of Covid-19 led to violent protests at the industrial site. In the aftermath, Zhengzhou authorities ordered a major screening campaign in several districts of the city. These neighborhoods are confined for five days from Friday midnight. Clearly, residents of the city center are no longer allowed to leave the area without a negative PCR test and permission from local authorities. They are advised not to leave their homes, “unless necessary”.

Schools, restaurants and shops closed again, fear of being placed in quarantine: a large part of the inhabitants of Beijing are now mentally exhausted by these restrictions, which are often vague and changing, the duration of which is never announced in advance. The country of more than 1.4 billion people is the only major economy in the world still trying to stem the spread of the virus, shutting down entire cities and placing contacts of infected patients under strict quarantine.

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