Beijing imposes negative COVID test requirement in all public places as cases spiral

People in Beijing will have to prove they are COVID-negative to get into any public building from Thursday after a surge in cases.

Authorities in the Chinese capital have said proof of a negative coronavirus test within the previous 48 hours will be required to enter shopping centres, hotels, government buildings and factories.

It comes after the city reported 634 new cases in the 15 hours to 3pm local time on Tuesday and as the country tries to grapple with a new wave of the virus.

Beijing, along with several other cities, committed to easing strict lockdown restrictions earlier this month.

Changes included reducing quarantine periods for close contacts of cases and people arriving in the country by two days.

But with China’s first three COVID-related deaths in six months reported this week, and cases still rising, stricter measures are being reintroduced.

Currently school pupils in several districts of Beijing are doing online learning only, while several businesses are closed.

More on Covid

This week Sky News visited Haizu in Guangzhou province – home to a new outbreak.

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Chinese city begins new lockdown

With the city responsible for around a third of China’s cases, a lockdown is in place – but it is not as strict as previous ones seen this year in places like Shanghai.

Confined to their homes for several months, Shanghai residents reported being unable to access food and violence breaking out as people reached breaking point.

Pandemic prevention workers in protective suits stand on a street as outbreaks of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continue in Beijing, China
Image: Government workers on duty in China’s capital

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China’s ‘dynamic zero COVID’ policy is wreaking havoc with the domestic and global economy.

Anger over the policy was heightened after a four-month-old girl died while in quarantine at a hotel in Zhengzhou when her father’s attempts to seek medical help for his sick baby daughter were refused.

Although government officials appear to have succumbed to pressure to impose more targeted restrictions, they have also called for “unity of thinking” in their continued “war” against the virus.

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