Crowds of people in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou crashed through COVID barriers and marched down streets on Monday night in a show of public resentment over COVID restrictions.
In the streets of Guangzhou, protesters hollered and pushed through the barrier as COVID prevention enforcement officials defended in vain. Among all the latest outbreaks in China, Guangzhou has the biggest caseload, with new daily infections of COVID-19 surpassing 5,000 and fuelling speculation that localised lockdowns could widen. On Weibo, the Chinese word for "revolt" and other words relating to the recent zero-COVID protests have been removed by the officials. Related officials declined to comment on these issues.
The extremity to which China has gone to stamp out the spread of the virus has resulted in mounting public anger and social contradictions. Local authorities take different actions on the implementation of COVID-control measures. Some places have decided on their own to place tighter control and restrictions on inland transport, creating problems.
Han Ching-hua, Deputy Director, Ministry of Transport of the PRC: “We will correct and put an end to any type of overcontrolling and procrustean actions. ”
China announced major changes to its strict COVID-19 measures for inbound travelers on the 11th, reducing quarantine on arrival from seven days to five, followed by three days of isolation at home.
Mr. Zhou, Beijing resident: “It's been 3 years since the pandemic. I don't think it's possible that everyone could just let go of all the control measures. It's not practical either, many people are still very concerned about the disease. I don't think there's anything we can do but to give it some time. ”
China's National Health Commission officials stressed that the roll-out of 20 measures to optimize COVID-19 response is a decision based on scientific evidence and that strict epidemic prevention and control must be combined with optimized measures.