A few weeks before the Beijing Olympics, China is worried about a sharp surge in coronavirus cases. China has brought out the heavy artillery as part of its zero Covid policy to ensure the epidemic remains under control: containment, screening and tracing.
To limit the cases of Covid-19, the Chinese authorities have followed a strict policy for two years. And paying: officially for two years, the country has had barely 100,000 patients since the appearance of the first cases in Wuhan. But the measures are drastic, even brutal. Millions of people locked in their homes, tested, re-tested, in the cold and in the middle of the night, constantly watched by the police and an army of members of the neighborhood committees, zealous volunteers of the Communist Party … This is what looks like the daily life in several cities of China according to the discovery of new sources of infection.
A pregnant woman has lost her baby
This weekend, it is the city of Tianjin, 150 km from Beijing, which forces 14 million of its inhabitants to be tested and to stay at home after the discovery of 20 patients. This zero Covid policy sometimes leads to dramatic situations. In Xi’an, a pregnant woman lost her baby at eight months pregnant when the hospital denied her access because her test had expired. A case that shocked public opinion with for the first time the mea culpa of the municipal authorities of Xi’an. “I would like to apologize to this patient, and I would like to express my sincere regret for the difficulties some people have in accessing medical services. We have failed in our homework.”
Other drifts: the padlocked apartment doors, surveillance cameras or the lack of food. And woe to those who want to escape and flee this confinement: they risk at least 10 days in prison.