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China adjusts Covid restrictions after public protests over harsh lockdowns

Umamah Bakharia ub@radioislam.co.za

2 min read
29 November 2022 | 15:00 CAT

China is enforcing police presence across the country after harsh protests erupted over the weekend due to the implementation of harsh COVID-19 restrictions.

 

Photo credit: ABC News

 

The protests began after 10 people died from toxic smoke after a fire erupted in a tower block in Urumqi in the far western region of Xinjiang.

Protesters blame harsh coronavirus lockdown restrictions for firefighters being unable to reach residents. However, officials deny the building was sealed off.

The Urumqi blaze led to protests in cities across China, including economic hubs, Beijing and Shanghai, where police presence has increased.

The most widely used symbol in the protests is a blank sheet of paper which symbolises censorship. Some Twitter users say it can be read as a reference to the deaths of the ten factory workers as white is a colour used at funerals.

According to Al Jazeerah, officers in Shanghai are moving to detain demonstrators and taking them away in a bus. Barriers have also been put up along the street to prevent people from gathering.

China has enforced a “zero-Covid” policy since 2020 to curb virus infections by implementing harsh lockdowns and restricting movement.

Meanwhile, China’s National Health Commission reported 38,645 new virus cases on Tuesday.

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