Containment in Shanghai: Residents scream their frustration at their windows

Covid-containment hits Shanghai system. Facing the worst wave of Covid in China since the beginning of the epidemic, Shanghai, the country’s economic capital, has been in full or partial confinement for two weeks. Under strict health measures, 25 million Shanghainese are forced to stay at home.

The least we can say is that this very strict mandatory confinement is pushing the residents of the capital to the limit. In a video taken by someone and released on Saturday, April 9, dozens, if not hundreds, can be heard screaming from their nets in frustration and exhaustion. A way to get rid of pressure, of course, but it’s also the only way to protest restrictions.

“This video was taken yesterday in Shanghai, China, by the father of one of my close friends. I verified it: people screaming out the window after a week of total confinement, don’t leave your apartment for any reason,” wrote the legend of this radio host. The video is also endorsed by France Inter.

At first some people screamed, then suddenly everyone started shouting. Because all these people don’t know how long this confinement will last and why the action was taken. There is no explanation. We have been locked up for 7 days. We can not only leave the housing, but even our apartments. It’s okay, if it lasts too long, there will be problems, ”says the man behind the camera.

Due to restrictions imposed on residents not even allowed to go out to buy food, more and more people are finding themselves with an empty refrigerator. Most supermarkets are closed and many delivery staff are unable to work.

Separate positive children from their parents

Chinese authorities continue to defend their “zero Covid” strategy, with confinement once few cases emerge. In Shanghai, they once implemented a highly controversial policy of separating children infected with the coronavirus from their parents who tested negative, which they have softened in the face of criticism.

China is pursuing a policy of rapid containment, mass testing and travel restrictions to stop the spread of the virus. Shanghai, under the influence of the wave fueled by the Omicron variable, on Sunday, April 10, reported a record 24,943 new infections, most of them asymptomatic, which represents more than 90% of the national total.

Authorities have prepared tens of thousands of new beds in more than 100 temporary hospitals as part of a policy of isolating anyone who shows symptoms or not. Many residents are outraged by the restrictions and are venting their anger on social media over food shortages and drastic measures taken to stem the outbreak.

Declare relaxation to calm discontent

In the face of escalating protests, the local government announced Monday morning that the measures are likely to be eased. It will gradually allow residents of less polluted areas to move out of their neighbourhoods, although it is not known how many people will be able to leave their homes or when.

Shanghai officials will define three categories of neighborhoods based on the infection rate. City official Gu Honghui said Monday that the “differentiated prevention and control” measures would reflect the “real” situation on the ground. Residents of the “strictly controlled” and “controlled areas” will remain confined to their homes. Residents of neighborhoods that have not recorded cases of infection during the past two weeks will be allowed to leave their homes.

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