China imposes lockdown in Henan province as new cases emerge

china henan
BEIJING: China has imposed a lockdown in the central province of Henan after a local outbreak of COVID-19 has emerged in the country.
Local authorities in Jia county of Henan have imposed travel restrictions since Wednesday after lockdowns in neighboring Hubei province eased. All businesses remained closed with the exception of supermarkets and farmers’ markets.
Non-essential travel remains banned between villages and communities, with anyone coming in and out of villages and residential compounds required to wear a face mask, take a body temperature check and show a health certificate.
Curfew-like measures came into effect on Tuesday, with some 600,000 people told to stay home, the county government’s Weibo account said. Officials have been telling people to stock up on daily necessities and get ready for another lockdown.
The lockdown came after a fresh cluster of coronavirus cases was reported among medical staff at Jia County People’s Hospital, one of whom had been in 14-day quarantine after returning from Wuhan.
There are concerns over the continued spread of coronavirus by asymptomatic carriers in China. The local authorities are trying to convince people that it’s safe to end the lockdowns and return to work.
The renewed lockdown came as China reported a decline in COVID-19 cases. The National Health Commission claims that the majority of newly confirmed cases are now imported from overseas.
Chen Bingzhong, former director of the China Institute of Health Education under the ministry of health, has said the government’s claim that around 1,000 asymptomatic cases have been recorded is highly dubious.
Zhong Nanshan, top epidemiologist and coronavirus epidemic adviser to the ruling Chinese Communist Party, has claimed that the proportion of asymptomatic cases has been very low.
According to official figures, 55 new cases of asymptomatic infections were reported on Thursday, while 1,075 people were under medical observation. China has publicly reported only about 82,000 cases and 3,300 deaths.
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