China's omicron cases rose for the fourth day in a row on Monday, with more infections reported in the city of Xi'an, which put 13 million residents under lockdown.

Xi'an reported 175 cases, up from the previous day's 150, official figures showed on Tuesday. None of them are of Omicron type. China has reported only a handful of omicron infections among international travelers and to its south.

Mainland China detected 182 local symptomatic cases for Monday, the health commission said, compared with 162 a day earlier.

Xi'an is facing China's biggest community outbreak since 2020. Read our correspondent Rhoda Kwan's report on how the city is responding, including a disinfection campaign in which workers spray pathogen-killing solutions on the surfaces of streets and buildings.

The lockdown is the first time China has imposed such severe measures since 2020, as officials continue to pursue a "zero COVID" approach to stamp out all local infections ahead of the Beijing Winter Olympics in February.

Since the coronavirus first emerged in the central city of Wuhan in late 2019, China has largely kept the epidemic at bay with stringent border restrictions, lengthy quarantines and targeted lockdowns. It has officially recorded only two deaths in a year.

The main reasons for the increase in numbers were more cases being detected during mandatory testing, and the spread of new clusters to more districts, said Zhang Yi, director of the Institute for Infectious Disease Prevention and Control of the Shanxi Provincial Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


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Also Read: Omicron Outbreak; United Airlines Cancelled Nearly 2,000 Flights On Monday

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