Despite the strict zero-Covid policy, there are more corona patients in China than at any time since the pandemic began: According to the Health Commission, around 32,700 new cases have been reported. The high numbers lead to even tougher restrictions – and cause growing resentment among the population – and mass protests.
︎ Angry migrant workers tore down numerous barricades in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou last week. Workers at China’s largest iPhone factory in the city of Zhengzhou took to the streets against the tough corona restrictions, leading to serious clashes with security forces on Wednesday. Workers have been complaining about poor conditions in the plant for weeks, and many have fled.
The government’s response to the dissatisfaction and protests: even tougher measures instead of easing!
︎ On Thursday, a lockdown for more than six million people was ordered in the city of Zhengzhou! Only the area of the huge iPhone factory is exempt from the lockdown, but the strictest corona rules apply.
︎ In the 18 million city of Guangzhou, several districts are completely in lockdown. The mega-metropolis of Chongqing only allows its approximately 30 million inhabitants to leave the country in urgent cases and with a negative corona test.
︎ And Beijing is also reminiscent of a ghost town: schools, kindergartens and shops are closed. People were asked not to be in public if possible.
A patchwork quilt is developing – the corona situation in China is becoming increasingly confusing.
As the rest of the world learns to live with the virus, daily mass testing, strict controls, contact tracing and forced quarantine continue to be part of everyday life for the people of China.