Beijing closes dozens of subway stations
Sylvie Claire / May 4, 2022
Beijing closed dozens of subway stations on Wednesday to restrict travel and combat Covid-19, even though the city of 21 million people has only a few dozen cases daily.
Largely unaffected for the past two years, China has been facing its worst outbreak in recent weeks. Most of the cases are recorded in Shanghai where the inhabitants have been confined for more than a month. In the country's economic capital, anyone who tests positive is sent to a quarantine center, with variable comfort and often deplorable hygiene conditions. The inhabitants of the capital, where 51 new cases were reported on Wednesday, fear that their city will be confined in turn. The residential complexes where cases have been reported are padlocked to prevent residents from leaving.
During the Labor Day vacation, when Chinese people usually travel en masse, tourist sites were almost deserted. Restaurants were closed to customers, and residents began stocking up on food and necessities for fear of a lockdown. Beijing's subway announced the closure of about 40 stations Wednesday -about 14 percent of the network- many of which are near confined areas, according to its WeChat page. Station entrances and exits will be closed... but (line) changes can be made inside the stations, the notice said. On Tuesday, the entire population of Chaoyang district, the capital's most populous, began a new round of testing that is scheduled to end on Thursday. Meanwhile, nearly 5,000 new cases have been reported in Shanghai, a figure that is falling as the city relaxes some measures.