China has detained 13m people in the center of Xi’an City, as the country struggles to cope with the coronavirus crisis, which is threatening to rebuild its economy in preparation for the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Xi’an City government ordered everyone to stay at home and to appoint one person at home to collect supplies once a day. Unnecessary travel outside the city has been banned, China’s Xinhua news agency reported.
Lockdown is one of the biggest problems in China since the government banned entry Wuhan early 2020 at the beginning of the global epidemic. It comes a few months before Winter Olympics in Beijing, a major political crisis in which the government has banned foreign tourists.
Leo Poon, a viral specialist at the University of Hong Kong, said Chinese authorities wanted to ensure that there was no “risk” of the virus spreading across the country ahead of the Winter Games.
“He wants to make sure that the whole of China has fewer Covid incidents,” he said. “With the presence of Omicron and Delta. . . this is going to be difficult. “
China also announced 73 new Covid-19 cases on Thursday, 63 of which were found in Xi’an. The country has released about 2.7bn Covid-19 vaccines, according to government statistics.
China recently had an epidemic in the eastern province of Zhejiang, and this month introduced restrictions in the port city of Tianjin, on the border with Beijing, after discovering that the country was the first Omicron of its kind.
Delta diversity remains more common than the new Omicron brand in China.
Local authorities in Xi’an “acted” on the issue and reassured the public that the food and commodity markets were “thriving”, the city government said on Weibo following reports of scary shopping on television.
China is one of the last countries in the world to adhere to zero-Covid principles. It has been doing well in reducing cases since the outbreak in Wuhan, with the suspension of urgent closures and reducing more than 100,000 cases since the outbreak began, according to government statistics.
But the emergence of a variety of infectious diseases in recent months has led to China closing the frequency and intensification, which has been dragging its feet. economic recovery.
On Thursday, officials in charge of the Cold Olympics said the increase in the number of athletes in the world for competing in the sport brings “significant opportunities” for Covid cases to take place.
This followed news on Wednesday that National Hockey League players in the US are not going to the Games to represent their countries due to the Covid-19 disruption in the league.