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Wenzhou in lockdown as virus concerns spread

2020-02-03 HKT 04:49
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  • Wenzhou is the latest mainland city to be placed on lockdown. Image: Shutterstock
    Wenzhou is the latest mainland city to be placed on lockdown. Image: Shutterstock
Beijing imposed a lockdown Sunday on a major city far from the epicentre of the coronavirus epidemic, as its death toll soared to 304.

The events added to deepening concern about the potential for the virus to spread, as governments around the world closed their borders to people from China.

Struggling to contain the virus, authorities took action in the eastern city of Wenzhou on Sunday – some 800 kilometres from Wuhan, the metropolis at the heart of the health emergency – closing roads and confining people to their homes.

Since emerging out of Wuhan late last year, the new coronavirus has infected nearly 14,500 people across China and reached 24 nations.

Ten days after locking down Wuhan, authorities imposed similar draconian measures on Wenzhou, a coastal city of nine million people in Zhejiang province, part of the eastern industrial heartland.

Only one resident per household is allowed to go out every two days to buy necessities, and 46 highway toll stations have been closed, authorities announced.

The city had previously closed public places such as cinemas and museums, and suspended public transport.

Zhejiang has 661 confirmed infections, with 265 of those in Wenzhou, according to the government. This is the highest tally for any province in China after ground-zero Hubei. (AFP)