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Updated April 30th, 2022 at 07:02 IST

China suspends funerals, closes schools amid spiralling COVID infections

As a fresh wave of deadly coronavirus infection grips China, the Xi Jinping administration has shut schools and suspended weddings and funerals in Beijing.

Riya Baibhawi
China
(Image: AP)  | Image:self
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As a fresh wave of deadly coronavirus infection grips China, the Xi Jinping administration has shut schools and suspended weddings and funerals in the country's capital Beijing. As per the city’s Educational bureau, all the schools have been ordered to finish classes by Fridays. The move was apparently taken to avoid a Shanghai-like lockdown, where people have been subjected to restriction and violence and triggering a food crisis.

Shanghai-known as China’s financial hub is witnessing its worst outbreak since the pandemic began. The 26 million-strong city has been engulfed by food shortages, overwhelmed quarantine facilities, and clashes between citizens and health workers. Meanwhile, furious residents have posted videos of people yelling from the balconies of apartments out of frustration caused by harsh measures imposed by the authorities. 

In one video, verified by the AP, residents leaving a building in Shanghai’s Xuhui district broke down the mesh fence barricades at their front entrance and went looking for the security guard they believed to be responsible for putting it up. However, the government has been denying reports of revolt and officials have been contesting saying all is well and managed well.

China's Zero COVID policy 

China, last month, implemented a notorious zero-COVID policy in order to eliminate all infections by enforcing strict lockdowns and transferring all patients to secure institutions. Now, in a recent report, AP has said that volunteers and government workers in Shanghai have erected metal barriers in multiple districts to block off small streets and entrances to apartment complexes. Meanwhile, the World Bank and some investment banks recently issued warnings about the damage caused by the intolerant COVID policy to the country's economy's growth. 

Beijing has ordered mass testing for its 21 million people after Monday’s nucleic acid tests of 3.5 million residents revealed 32 positive cases, while the eastern metropolis of Shanghai has reported 52 more deaths, taking the toll during the current outbreak to 190, officials said. The Chinese capital, which is battling the spread of the Omicron variant in the city, similar to Shanghai, has ordered mass testing from Tuesday in 11 of its districts, virtually covering all of its 21 million population. The country has reported some 214,243 cases of the deadly viral infection since the pandemic started. 

(Image: AP) 

 

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Published April 30th, 2022 at 07:02 IST

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