China reports first coronavirus death in 8 months amid new strain scare

China reported its first death from Covid-19 in eight months on Thursday because the nation battles to include a resurgence in circumstances.

Greater than 20 million individuals are underneath lockdown in the north of the nation and one province has declared an emergency, as every day Covid-19 numbers climb after months of reporting solely a handful of every day circumstances.

China had largely introduced the virus outbreak underneath management by means of a collection of strict lockdowns and mass testing. However one other 138 infections had been reported by the Nationwide Well being Fee on Thursday — the best single-day tally since March 2020.

China — the place the virus first emerged — has once more locked down tens of millions of individuals because it fights to manage a contemporary outbreak that has now claimed its first sufferer, sparking anguish on social media. The hashtag “New virus death in Hebei” rapidly ratcheted up 100 million views on the Twitter-like Weibo platform.

“I have not seen the phrases ‘virusdeath’ in so lengthy, it’s kind of surprising! I hope the epidemic can go quickly,” one person wrote.

A number of cities underneath lockdown(*8*)

No particulars got by well being authorities in regards to the newest death, besides that it occurred in Hebei province, the place the federal government has positioned a number of cities underneath lockdown.

Authorities final week launched a mass testing drive and closed transport hyperlinks, faculties and outlets in Hebei’s capital metropolis Shijiazhuang — the epicentre of the newest outbreak.

Neighbouring Xingtai, house to seven million folks, has additionally been locked down since final Friday, as have the 5 million folks of Langfang metropolis.

In an indication of infections spreading, northeastern Heilongjiang declared an “emergency state” on Wednesday, telling its 37.5 million residents to not go away the province until completely mandatory and saying public gatherings can be cancelled.

No deaths have been reported in mainland China since Could final 12 months, and the official death toll now stands at 4,635.

WHO arrives in Wuhan(*8*)

The death comes as China readies for the arrival of an professional crew of scientists from the World Well being Group (WHO), who began a politically delicate investigation into the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The ten-strong crew arrived in Wuhan on Thursday, the central Chinese language metropolis the place the virus was first detected in late 2019.

Peter Ben Embarek, crew lead for the mission, stated the group would begin with a two-week quarantine at a lodge as a consequence of China’s border necessities.

“After which after the 2 weeks, we might be capable to transfer round and meet our Chinese language counterparts in particular person and go to the completely different websites that we’ll need to go to. The thought is to advance plenty of research that had been already designed and determined upon some months in the past to get us a greater understanding of what occurred,” he stated.

The long-delayed journey comes greater than a 12 months after the pandemic started and amid political tensions over allegations that Beijing tried to thwart the challenge.

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