lørdag 20. juni 2020

Beijing's new outbreak is a reminder to the world that coronavirus can return at anytime

Until last week, Beijing seemed to have all but moved on from the coronavirus pandemic. For 55 days, the Chinese capital had not reported any locally transmitted infections and life had been returning to normal. Businesses and schools reopened, people went back to work, and the city's public transports and parks were once again teeming with crowds.

But that facade of normality was shattered last week, when a fresh cluster of coronavirus cases emerged from a sprawling wholesale food market in the city, infecting more than 180 people as of Friday. Within a matter of days, the metropolis of more than 20 million people was placed under a partial lockdown. Authorities reintroduced restrictive measures used earlier to fight the initial wave of infections, sealing off residential neighborhoods, closing schools and barring hundreds of thousands of people deemed at risk of contracting the virus from leaving the city. Some 356,000 people have been tested in just five days.