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China Ramps Up Lockdown Measures Amid Coronavirus Second Wave Fears

Chinese Communist Party shuts down gyms and swimming pools in Beijing

 on 26th April 2020 @ 12.00pm
chinese border officials are looking for travellers arriving from russia © press
Chinese border officials are looking for travellers arriving from Russia

China has started ramping up lockdown measures in the capital Beijing, sparking fears the country may be battling with a second wave of coronavirus.

On Saturday, the Chinese Communist Party (CPC) has shut down gyms and swimming pools in Beijing after new COVID-19 cases were reported.

The news comes just days after the communist regime placed a city of 10 million people in its northwest region near Russia in quarantine.

China's northwestern province of Shaanxi reported seven new "imported" cases of coronavirus on Saturday, which the CPC claims were all in citizens returning home from Russia.

President Xi Jinping has been trying to restart the nation's economy and convince the rest of the world that China, where the virus first emerged in late December, has defeated the outbreak by lifting lockdowns, which many feared were too soon and based on false data.

Beijing claims that the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in China is now 82,816 with the death toll remaining the same at 4,632, with no new deaths reported.

china claims the new cases of coronavirus have been  imported  from abroad © press
China claims the new cases of coronavirus have been 'imported' from abroad

There is widespread disbelief at China's figures across the globe from Western governments who accuse Beijing of letting coronavirus spread around the world while its leaders saved face.   

President Donald Trump has accused the World Health Organisation (WHO) of colluding with Beijing to downplay its coronavirus outbreak, amid doubts over China's claim to have only 4,636 dead from the virus.

The people of Wuhan believe the death toll in their city that was the epicenter of the outbreak is 42,000 - not the 3,182 claimed by China, according to The Daily Mail.

Trump is backed by large numbers of Republican politicians amid claims from the US intelligence community that the virus escaped from a lab near Wuhan in an accident involving an intern.

And in the UK, Downing Street has removed China from the list of other countries it uses to compare the spread of the coronavirus - in a snub to Beijing amid widespread anger at the nation's apparent cover-up of the seriousness of its coronavirus outbreak.

People returning to China from overseas are once again being ordered to quarantine, while health clubs and swimming pools are shutting amid fears of a new spike in the disease.  

China has instituted stringent checks at its ports and border points, banning the entry of foreign nationals on March 28, and even diverting international flights from its capital city Beijing.

Still, it has faced a continuous trickle of cases brought in by Chinese citizens wanting to return home in spite of the risks of getting infected.

In recent days, many of these have come back from Russia.

The new cases in Shaanxi were all Chinese nationals who had returned on April 20 on a flight from Moscow that was diverted away from Beijing.

As of Saturday, the flight had a confirmed total of 30 cases, and 8 asymptomatic infections, according to the provincial health commission.

No further details were given about the imported cases in Manzhouli in Inner Mongolia.

The northern province announced Friday that it would start requiring all international arrivals to undergo a 28-day quarantine, as well as two tests for COVID-19 as well as an antibody test.  

Zhao Hui, 30, the owner of Upower Fitness in Beijing, told The Sunday Telegraph: "On April 16, after we passed the inspection, we were able to start a trial operation.

"Then on April 18, they suddenly asked us to close again.

"I felt very frustrated. We just saw hope, but then it was gone, and we could not operate again."

It comes as more than 70 people have been infected and over 4,000 are being tested in the city of Harbin after China claims the virus was "imported" by a student who had returned from New York, according to media reports. 

Officials have banned gatherings and ordered communities to closely monitor non-local visitors and vehicles in the city of around 10 million. 

Checkpoints have been installed at the airport and train stations, to screen those coming from elsewhere. 

Earlier this week, China announced that there were only two critically ill patients left in Wuhan, the former center of the pandemic. 

Harbin, the provincial capital of Heilongjiang in north-eastern China, has been grappling with what is now the country's biggest coronavirus outbreak.

many believe the death in wuhan is 42 000   not the 3 182 claimed by china © press
Many believe the death in Wuhan is 42,000 - not the 3,182 claimed by China

The government released a directive on Friday to instruct further restrictions on its residents, visitors, and inbound traffic. 

Before entering any public facilities and residential complexes, people must use a government-approved health app to prove they don't have the virus, have their temperature taken, and wear a face mask, the notice says. 

Residents must follow social-distancing measures. 

Weddings, funerals, public performances, and conferences are banned.

All confirmed, suspected, asymptomatic cases and their close contacts will be put into strict quarantine.

All their neighbors in the same building must be isolated at home for two weeks with around-the-clock surveillance.

Asymptomatic cases are those who carry the virus but show no symptoms.

They can still spread the virus to others.

Anyone in home-quarantine must pass two nucleic acid tests, which detect the coronavirus, and one anti-body test, which shows if the person has had the virus in the past.

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tags: China | coronavirus

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