China reported 140 new corona virus cases on Saturday, the highest in four months as authorities rushed to control the outbreak in several regions, including the city of Xi’an, where millions of people are being held captive.
Of the 140 new infections, 87 had spread domestically, up from 55 a day earlier, according to the National Health Commission.
Most of the pollution occurred in Xi’an in Shanxi (northwestern) province, where 13 million people have been detained since Thursday.
As China prepares to host the Winter Olympics in February in the capital, Beijing, China is on high alert.
Cases have been on the rise in recent weeks as the country has reduced the number of cases to a minimum, thanks to a “zero Govt” strategy that includes border controls, lengthy isolations and target lockdowns.
CCTV public broadcast footage on Saturday showed long queues outside checkpoints in Xi’an, with officials rushing to prevent a recent explosion.
Under strict control rules, from Thursday, families in Xi’an will not be allowed to send a member outside every two days to purchase basic necessities. Residents must obtain special permission from their employer or local authorities to leave the city.
Since the first case was reported on December 9, 2021, Cyan has recorded 330 cases of transmission domestically with symptoms, which is very low compared to eruptions elsewhere in the world.
But about 26 Xian government officials have been cleared for failing to curb the virus, the Chinese regulatory body said Friday.
As part of Beijing’s harsh approach, local officials who are believed to have failed to control the virus in their area are constantly being fired or reprimanded.
Xian’s cases have so far spread to five other cities, including Beijing, raising fears about how quickly the virus will spread in the country, according to state media.
China has recorded 100,871 symptom cases and less than 5,000 deaths since the virus first appeared in Wuhan in late 2019.