Chinese City of 6 million Forced into “War-Time” Lockdown after Fresh COVID-19 Outbreak

A Chinese city has been placed in “wartime mode” as health chiefs try to halt a fresh COVID-19 outbreak centred around a seafood processing plant.

A “War-time” Lockdown has been reimposed in the northeastern port city of Dalian as 12 new cases have been registered since Wednesday – after the region reported no infections for nearly four months. Two neighbourhoods in the city centre were also forced into full lockdown with no residents allowed to enter or leave.

Chinese City of 6 million Forced into "War-Time" Lockdown after Fresh COVID-19 Outbreak
Both areas are being fully and deeply disinfected as health officials try to track down the source of the infections. image: Twitter

6 Million in lockdown

Residents in other parts of the city of six million people are only allowed to leave if they show negative testing results produced within seven days. Local officials urged fast disinfection in key areas, including shopping malls, wholesale markets and warehouses. They also called for the closure of public enclosed places such as internet cafes and shower rooms in medium-risk areas.

The Dalian Health Commission said the city had to “quickly enter wartime mode, go all-out, mobilise all people and resolutely curb the spread of the epidemic”. It also announced strict new measures, including on-the-spot nucleic acid tests for everyone taking a subway line that passes the affected seafood company.

The authorities also urged their residents not to leave the city unless there is an emergency as they scrambled to put thousands under isolation and track down the close contacts of the infected. China appears to have struggled with curbing the contagion entirely as recent domestic outbreaks erupted multiple regions, including Xinjiang and Hong Kong.

Dalian officials Wednesday reported its first local infection in nearly four months, a 58-year-old male employee from a local seafood processing company.

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Tony Winterburn

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