Chinese government authorities locked down the southern city of Ruili, located along China’s border with Myanmar, on Monday to contain a new cluster of Chinese coronavirus infections detected in the municipality over the weekend, the state-run Global Times reported.
“Starting at 8 am on Monday [July 5], nobody may leave or enter Ruili unless deemed necessary,” the city’s coronavirus command center announced in a statement posted to the Ruili municipal government’s website on July 5.
According to the statement:
Those who live or work in Ruili are allowed to enter the city after showing valid certificates, and those who need to leave Ruili for special reasons must present a negative nucleic acid test result obtained within three days and receive approval from the command center.
Ruili government authorities said they “temporarily closed” the city’s Jiegao Bridge, which links China and Myanmar, as of July 5 to further prevent people and vehicles from leaving the municipality.
Ruili shares a 105 mile-long border with Myanmar and is located within China’s Yunnan province. Yunnan government officials said they locked down Ruili, a city of 210,000 permanent residents, on July 5 to contain “three new domestic COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus] cases” reported by the Health Commission of Yunnan Province on July 4.
“Among the three domestic COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus] cases, two are Chinese nationals and one is Myanmar national,” Yunnan’s health commission said in a statement.
“Ruili will go all out to conduct an epidemiological investigation and comprehensive tracing of the movements of the three confirmed cases and their close contacts and sub-close contacts within 14 days,” a Ruili government official told reporters at a press conference on July 5, according to the Global Times.
Ruili is China’s largest Myanmar border city. The municipality serves as the launching pad for the “largest flow of people, vehicles, and goods” between the two countries. “In 2019, Ruili’s checkpoints cleared a total of 20.63 million people, accounting for almost half of the inbound and outbound traffic in Yunnan Province,” according to the Global Times.
Ruili’s coronavirus resurgence appears to have begun just three days after the Chinese government staged massive in-person gatherings nationwide to celebrate the centenary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s founding on July 1. Photos and videos of the official state-mandated celebrations appear to show as many as thousands of people packed tightly together in stadiums, squares, and theaters to either perform or watch communist propaganda shows. Observers warned that the “superspreader” events would likely increase transmission of the Chinese coronavirus across China in subsequent days and weeks.
— Reuters (@Reuters) June 29, 2021