Nearly 30 million under lockdown in China as virus surges

Nearly 30 million people were under lockdown across China today as surging coronavirus cases prompted the return of mass tests and hazmat-suited health officials to city streets on a scale not seen since the pandemic’s start.

China reported 5,280 new Covid-19 cases, more than double the previous day’s tally, as the highly transmissible Omicron variant spreads across a country tethered tightly to a “zero-Covid” strategy.

That approach pivots on hard localised lockdowns and has left China virtually cut off from the outside world for two years. It appears to be on the line as Omicron finds its way into communities.

At least 13 cities nationwide were fully locked down today, while several other cities had partial lockdowns.

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