Shanghai warned on Wednesday that anyone who breaks the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions will face severe consequences, while also mobilizing residents to protect their city as the number of new cases climbed to over 25,000.
The municipal police department outlined the constraints that the majority of the city’s 25 million citizens face, urging them to “fight the pandemic with one heart… and strive together for an early triumph.”
“Those who breach the provisions of this notification will be dealt with by public security organizations in strict compliance with the law…
They will be investigated according to the law if it is a crime ” the department said in a statement.
Since the coronavirus was first found in the city of Wuhan, some 800 kilometers (500 miles) to the west, in late 2019, the financial hub has been under intense pressure to manage China’s largest COVID-19 outbreak.
Apart from those participating in epidemic prevention work or transporting those in need of emergency medical treatment, Shanghai police have also barred cars off the roadways.
They also advised citizens not to distribute false information or fabricate road passes or other clearance papers, as millions of people are confined to their houses and struggle to receive daily necessities.
Shanghai reported 25,141 new asymptomatic coronavirus infections on Tuesday, up from 22,348 the day before, and 1,189 new symptomatic cases, up from 994, according to city officials. Last week, China sent its military as Shanghai ordered to test 26 million residents for Covid.
Shanghai’s COVID policies, which mirror China’s strict “zero-COVID” policy aimed at eradicating transmission networks, have resonated throughout the global economy, with analysts warning that they are affecting supply chains across sectors as well as tourism and hospitality.
In a note, Barclays Bank economist Jian Chang stated, “The extensive lockdown and tougher zero-COVID restrictions in various locations around Shanghai have produced considerable supply disruptions, with transport and logistics under severe stress.”
Shanghai was one of eight cities included in a test scheme announced on Monday to reduce centralised quarantine requirements from 14 to 10 days, according to the Caixin media group, citing a government proposal put forth in a document that has not been formally released.
Featured image: Hubei medical team aid Shanghai COVID-19 community testing (Wiki Commons)