China orders 51 million into lockdown as COVID surges

ABC News

HONG KONG — China is facing its worst COVID crisis since early 2020, when the world first witnessed an entire population locked down to contain the coronavirus in Wuhan and its surrounding province.

Two years on, it’s now sending tens of millions of people into lockdown in the entire northeastern province of Jilin, where 24 million people live, and the southern cities of Shenzhen and Dongguan, with 17.5 million and 10 million, respectively.

China, the last major country to relentlessly pursue a Covid-zero policy, reported 1,437 cases across dozens of cities on Monday. That’s a fourfold jump in a week.

Although record case numbers are testing the resilience of China’s no-tolerance approach, there is no sign the country is willing to pivot to ‘living with the virus.”

The epicenter of the omicron variant outbreak is the Northeastern Jilin province, where 895 cases were recorded, but there are also outbreaks and containment measures in place Shanghai, the financial powerhouse, and Shenzhen, the southern tech hub.

Authorities announced on Monday afternoon that all 24 million people in Jilin province would go into lockdown, including the previously locked down city of Changchun. It’s the first provincial lockdown since Wuhan and Hubei in January 2020.

On Sunday, China ordered all of Shenzhen’s 17.5 million residents into a seven-day lockdown, with three rounds of testing. All public transport is halted and all businesses, except essential services, will be closed until March 20.

As a result, Apple supplier Foxconn has shut two of its plants in the area and relocated production elsewhere.

The lockdown and outbreaks threaten manufacturing and tech production in Shenzhen, known as China’s Silicon Valley. It’s home to Huawei and Tencent, and is home to one of the country’s key ports.

Professor Heiwai Tang at Hong Kong University told ABC News that he doesn’t expect these week-long lockdowns to have a significant impact on the country’s gross domestic product.

“It seems the lockdowns will be shorter this time with more tracking, which means a short disruption of work and production,” Tang said. “If it ends up lasting for weeks it’s another issue, including inflation risks.”

Professor Michael Song from Hong Kong’s Chinese University estimated that the two-month lockdown in Wuhan cost China 2% of its GDP.

There’s immense pressure on local authorities to contain the virus, with state media reporting that the Jilin City mayor and the head of the Changchun city health commission were dismissed from their roles over the weekend.

Shanghai-based virologist Zhang Wenhong called the flare-up “the most difficult moment in the past two years” of China’s efforts to stamp out the virus. Shanghai has so far avoided a full-scale lockdown.

Across the border from Shenzhen, neighboring Hong Kong is also still tackling its deadliest wave yet, driven by Omicron. Hong Kong recorded 26,908 cases and 286 more deaths on Monday, officials said. Hong Kong’s death rate is the highest in the developed world, in part because of sluggish vaccination rates among the elderly.

Mega isolation facilities are being built across the Hong Kong for people with mild cases. One facility, with 3,900 beds, was built in a week. ABC News witnessed several busloads of people arriving at the facility from all over the city.

Self-titled “Asia’s world city,” Hong Kong is undergoing strict social-distancing measures and still has strict border measures in place, leading to an expat exodus. Many businesses are closed until late April.

The mental-health strain of the strict lockdown has also becoming apparent. Last month, police reported three suicide attempts in 27 hours at one of the quarantine camps.

16 thoughts on “China orders 51 million into lockdown as COVID surges

  1. China rockdown the masses. Stupid people watch on terevision and get scared. Stupid people rock themselves down.
    Desperate strategy to say the least.

  2. 51 million, surrendering. Lockdown: Looks like one more layer of their global circus-management. Okay, YOU guys stay put. You guys over there, go to the hospital and prepare to die. You others, understand that the bombs dropping in your neighborhood are to protect you. And yes, you might lose a child or two. The rest of you, keep playin’ the stock-market and hope that your ship will come in (that is if we don’t sink it).

    They’re moving the whole planet this way and that, swaying it to the cruel coercion of communism’s concerto. So many wrong notes being sounded. Discordant and cacophonous. Ugly songs of supremacy and false authority. Only freedom sounds melodious.


    1. My friend, good to hear you!!! Ya just try to invest your almight american dollar somewhere… and watch it getn sucked away!!! Skimming the cream of the top always this fck gov!!!!!!!!

    2. They’re moving the whole planet this way and that, swaying it to the cruel coercion of communism’s concerto. So many wrong notes being sounded. Discordant and cacophonous. Ugly songs of supremacy and false authority. Only freedom sounds melodious.

      Soooooo well & poetically put galen! Also sooooo true! You are in perfect “harmony” with my thoughts! Discordance is actually a very common trait of all jewish-concocted “music” from their attempts to subvert classical, through all the ugly, “artsy” avant garde to the garbage rock & pop of today. It’s all intended to be unsettling & to separate us from the Natural melodies & harmonies that are both within us & surround us in Nature. I think now is about that time again to say… f-k the jews!

      1. Thank you. And I see the discordance in their modern-day sculptures, as well. There are two obnoxious ones in the middle of my town. One just looks like two giant Baphomet horns and the other is just a big silver knot. With that knot it’s as if they’re saying, “We’ve got you all tied up and you’ll never figure us out.” Every time I go by it I think, “Wanna bet, you bast*rds.”


  3. one of these days , this type of action is going to blow up on them.. the people will only put up with this for so long ..and than what comes out of it will be entirely their fault , you can only push people so far.. and than shit get ugly

    its actually kinda surprising to me that the Chinese have put up with this as long as they have ..must be great communistic brainwashing at play

    1. Brainwashing, indoctrination, conformity, call it what you want but the communist mechanisms of subversion go far beyond an authoritative figure. The communism is even built into their culture, for example, asking for help and being poor or uneducated is frowned upon. I would also say they are taught to distrust one another, not explicitly but through values of strict loyalty only to family or parties. All of it is built to stray away from the most important aspect of ideology that would set them free. Individuality. Individuality is the part they don’t get.

Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published.