China tightens lockdown measures on north-eastern cities after discovering new coronavirus clusters

Chinese authorities have enforced further lockdown measures on its north-eastern cities after a local infection cluster continues to spread as officials conduct mass-testing on citizens to prevent a possible second outbreak.

Shulan, a city of 600,000 people located in Jilin province of north-western China, has tightened quarantine measures today by banning residents from leaving their homes in compounds with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases. 

Jilin, the capital city of Jilin province, also sealed off one of its districts yesterday after changing the area’s emergency level to ‘high-risk’.

Shulan, a city of 600,000 people located in Jilin province of north-western China, has tightened quarantine measures today by banning residents from leaving their homes in compounds with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases. The picture taken on May 17 shows an entrance of a market is blocked in Jilin province

For the past three days, provincial officials have screened more than 40,000 residents in its capital city and Shulan to prevent a second wave of the outbreak, authorities said today

For the past three days, provincial officials have screened more than 40,000 residents in its capital city Jilin and Shulan to prevent a second wave of the outbreak, authorities said today. 

Six officials – one from Shulan and five from Jilin city – have been removed from their posts following the emergence of local infection clusters, Chinese media report.

It comes as the province of Jilin reported two new infections today, bringing the total of confirmed cases to 34. All cases have been linked to a cluster of infections emerged in Shulan earlier this month.

The city of Shulan has been under lockdown since May 9 after registering 12 COVID-19 cases in the space of two days.

Four days later, the provincial capital city Jilin, with a population of more than four million, shut down its borders and suspended public transport after reporting six new confirmed cases last Wednesday, all linked to the infection cluster in Shulan.  

From Sunday, officials in Jilin city have sealed off one of its district, Fengman, where 12 infections were detected. The area’s emergency level has also been changed from ‘medium-risk’ to ‘high-risk’.

Shulan officials decided to implement further restrictions on its residents after the cluster of infections continue to spread across the province, according to an official notice issued today.

The city of Shulan has been under lockdown since May 9 after registering 12 COVID-19 cases in the space of two days, all linked to the same source. Pictured, medical workers wait to be disinfected as they line up to submit the COVID-19 samples in Jilin yesterday

Shulan, a city of 600,000 people located in Jilin province of north-western China, has been a COVID-19 hotspot after reporting a cluster of infections earlier this month

The directive, billed as ‘Shulan’s most strict measures’, said that residential compounds with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases have been sealed off from Monday, with no citizen allowed to enter or leave. Volunteers in Jilin are pictured guarding at a residential complex

The directive, billed as ‘Shulan’s most strict measures’, said that residential compounds with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases have been sealed off from Monday, with no citizen allowed to enter or leave. Daily supplies will be delivered to residents’ front doors by local supermarkets.

Households from areas with no infections can appoint only one family member to go out to purchase essentials once every two days for a maximum of two hours. Residents who break such rules will be banned from leaving their homes completely, according to the notice.

The cities of Jilin and Shulan are located in the eponymous province of Jilin, which borders Russia and North Korea.

Households from areas with no infections can appoint only one family member to go out to purchase essentials once every two days for a maximum of two hours. A volunteer wearing a protective suit is seen scanning a woman’s health QR code at the temperature checkpoint at the entrance of a residential community in Jilin city on May 17

Jilin city reported six new confirmed cases last Wednesday, all linked to the Shulan cluster. Police officers clad in protective suits stand guard outside Jilin city’s railway station on May 13

A cluster of infections was reported in the suburb of Shulan in early May, with Jilin’s vice mayor warning last Wednesday that the situation was ‘extremely severe and complicated’ and ‘there is major risk of further spread’

As of today, Jilin province has reported a total of 34 confirmed COVID-19 infections, of which 19 were recorded in Shulan and 15 were detected in the city of Jilin.

All of the cases were linked to a local laundry worker, a 45-year-old woman who tested positive on May 7 and was reported as the first confirmed infection. But it remains unclear how the patient contracted the virus.

Eight patients from the cluster of infections have recovered, according to the Jilin Health Commission today. No deaths have yet been reported.

Local authorities have been conducting mass-testing in the two cities in a move to prevent a possible second wave of the outbreak, said Wang Bin, an official from the National Health Commission told the press Monday.

A total of 40,101 Jilin residents have been screened for COVID-19 in the past three days, Chinese media report.

It comes as Wuhan, the city where the pandemic began, has kicked off its 10-day coronavirus testing on its 11 million residents as seeing an emergence of new cases in Wuhan in recent days, after weeks without fresh infections.

China has largely brought the virus under control, but it has been on edge about a potential second wave as it has lifted lockdowns and restrictions across the country. 

Wuhan, the city where the pandemic began, has kicked off its city-wide coronavirus testing on its 11 million residents as seeing an emergence of new cases in Wuhan in recent days. Pictured, a medical worker takes a swab sample from a Wuhan resident on May 15

Workers are seen lining up for medical workers to take swabs for the coronavirus test at a large factory in Wuhan on May 15 as the city pledges to screen all of its 11 million citizens in 10 days

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