Beijing, Shanghai ease COVID restrictions as outbreaks fade

May 28, 2022, 11:38 PM | Updated: 11:47 pm
Residents wearing face masks walk through the reopening shopping mall decorated with colorful flowe...

Residents wearing face masks walk through the reopening shopping mall decorated with colorful flowers after being closed due to COVID-19 restrictions in Beijing, Sunday, May 29, 2022. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

(AP Photo/Andy Wong)

BEIJING (AP) — Shoppers returned to the malls of Beijing on Sunday as the Chinese capital relaxed pandemic restrictions after declaring a small but persistent COVID-19 outbreak effectively under control.

A partial reopening of stores and offices in Beijing was welcomed by a weary populace and struggling shopkeepers eager for life to return to normal. Coupled with a gradual easing of restrictions in Shanghai, it signaled that the worst is over in the twin outbreaks in China’s most prominent cities.

The lockdowns and other restrictions under China’s “zero-COVID” strategy have increasingly frustrated residents as they see other countries ease up and re-open their borders. Some have resisted and staged protests at apartment complexes and university dormitories, in an authoritarian country where people think twice about speaking out publicly because of possible repercussions.

Restaurants remain closed in Beijing, except for takeout and delivery, and many people in Shanghai still can only go out with special passes and for a limited time period, even as the number of new cases has plummeted. Officials tend to err on the side of caution under a system that readily punishes them for lax enforcement if outbreaks flare up or come back.

China recorded 293 new cases on Saturday, of which 78 were among people who had arrived from overseas. Shanghai had the most non-imported cases, with 122, and Beijing had 21. That’s in a population of more than 20 million people in both cities.

Beijing allowed public parks, gyms and cinemas to reopen on Sunday, all at 50% of their capacity. A portion of the Great Wall in a rural part of Beijing, about 60 kilometers (40 miles) from downtown, reopens to visitors on Monday.

Xu Hejian, a city spokesperson, said Saturday that sporadic cases are still being found in some districts, but they are within a controllable range. “This round of outbreak has been put under effective control,” he said.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

The Kaam Jiroon camp for the internally-displaced is seen from the air in Baidoa, Somalia, Wednesda...
Associated Press

Facing severe drought, Somalia calls for Turkish support

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Somalia’s president on Wednesday called for assistance from Turkey to combat the effects of severe drought that is threatening the Horn of Africa. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud made the comments during his first visit to Turkey since returning to office following an election in May. The two countries have forged close ties […]
7 hours ago
This photo provided by UMBC, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) Professor Weihong Lin,...
Associated Press

Biomedical grantmakers’ diversity push gains new momentum

One and a half billion dollars is a big mea culpa, but that is what one philanthropy is throwing on the table to address what it admits is a longstanding problem: the failure to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in health research. The Howard Hughes Medical Institute, one of the nation’s wealthiest philanthropies, in […]
7 hours ago
FILE - Elvira, a bracco Italiano, competes in the 24 inch class at the Masters Agility Competition ...
Associated Press

Ciao! American Kennel Club adds a breed, the bracco Italiano

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. dog lovers, say “benvenuto” to the bracco Italiano. The ancient Italian bird-hunting dog is the 200th member of the American Kennel Club’s roster of recognized breeds, the organization announced Wednesday. That means the handsome, powerful but amiable pointers can now go for best in show at many U.S. dog shows, […]
7 hours ago
German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser addresses the media during a press conference in Berlin, Germ...
Associated Press

Germany eases path to permanent residency for migrants

BERLIN (AP) — Tens of thousands of migrants, who have been living in Germany for years without long-lasting permission to remain in the country, will be eligible for permanent residency after the government approved a new migration bill Wednesday. The new regulation, endorsed by the Cabinet, applies to about 136,000 people who have lived in […]
7 hours ago
FILE - The Activision Blizzard Booth is shown on June 13, 2013, during the Electronic Entertainment...
Associated Press

Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard bid faces UK antitrust probe

LONDON (AP) — Microsoft’s acquisition of game publisher Activision Blizzard faces antitrust scrutiny in the U.K., where competition regulators said Wednesday they’ve opened an initial inquiry into the $69 billion deal. The Competition and Markets Authority said it has started looking into whether the tie-up would result “in a substantial lessening of competition” in the […]
7 hours ago
FILE - Carlos Santana performs at the BottleRock Napa Valley Music Festival in Napa, Calif., on May...
Associated Press

Rocker Carlos Santana ‘doing well’ after collapsing onstage

DETROIT (AP) — Guitar icon Carlos Santana collapsed on stage during a show in Michigan and was rushed to a hospital, later blaming the episode on forgetting to eat or drink water. Santana, 74, was “doing well” Wednesday after being taken from his show at Pine Knob Music Theatre in Clarkston, some 40 miles northwest […]
7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
...
Day & Night Air

Tips to lower your energy bill in the Arizona heat

Does your summer electric bill make you groan? Are you looking for effective ways to reduce your bill?
...
Arizona Division of Problem Gambling

Arizona Division of Problem Gambling provides exclusion solution for young sports bettors

Sports betting in Arizona opened a new world to young adults, one where putting down money on games was as easy as sending a text message.
Beijing, Shanghai ease COVID restrictions as outbreaks fade