Chinese cities ease COVID restrictions amid angry protests – POLITICO


Several Chinese cities have started easing COVID testing and quarantine rules, after protests against strict lockdown measures swept the country.

Authorities have announced a move to more targeted measures, amid a wave of angry protests – the largest in decades – over the country’s draconian zero-COVID measures.

Shenzhen, southeast China, drops requirement for negative COVID test to use public transport or enter parks; Beijing has closed many test booths as it halted its requirement for a negative test to enter supermarkets, and prepared to lift the requirement for subways, Reuters reported. Chengdu and Tianjin have made similar changes.

The cities of Guangzhou and Chonqing also announced they would lift some measures after clashes between protesters and police earlier this week.

Chinese Vice Premier Sun Chunlan reportedly announced a « new milestone » in the country’s COVID policies, pointing to « the decreasing pathogenicity of the Omicron variant, the increasing vaccination rate, and the accumulated experience in control and prevention of epidemics ».

China reported 33,073 COVID infections on Friday, compared to 34,980 new cases on Thursday. Official figures put the total death toll from the pandemic at just over 5,200.


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