One case, 33,000 tests: In China, a very Disney story | World news


Shanghai Disneyland was closed on Monday for a single case of Covid-19, as Chinese authorities continued their zero infection strategy ahead of the Winter Olympics.

China has reduced most domestic cases to a trickle throughout the pandemic, but a surge in recent weeks has tested Beijing’s resolve to eliminate Covid-19 even as much of the rest of the world world opens up.

There were 92 new cases reported on Monday – the highest since mid-September.

Shanghai Disneyland has closed after a woman who visited the park on Saturday tested positive upon returning to a neighboring province, state media reported.

Disneyland said it would remain closed for at least Monday and Tuesday “to keep up with pandemic prevention and control requirements.”

The reopening date has not yet been confirmed, he added.

The park began barring new visitors from entering on Sunday, with everyone in the park having to take a Covid-19 test before leaving.

Nearly 34,000 people were tested on Monday morning, the city government said, with all tests negative.

State media images showed dozens of health workers dressed in hazmat suits inside Disneyland, as masked visitors waited under fireworks at the park’s iconic castle.

The shutdown comes after the newly opened Universal Studios in Beijing said on Saturday that close contacts of infected people were found among visitors from the previous weekend.

All staff at this theme park – which went into an “emergency prevention state” on Friday – tested negative and no trace of the virus was detected at the site, the park added.

Beijing is due to host the Winter Olympics in less than 100 days, and authorities have said eradicating the virus is their biggest challenge as it approaches.

At a press conference on Monday, the deputy chief of the Beijing Center for Disease Control, Pang Xinghuo, said the current outbreak remains “severe and complex”, especially as the weather gets colder.

At least three neighborhoods in the capital have closed cinemas and other entertainment venues in an attempt to curb the spread of the virus.

About six million people are on containment orders, mostly in northern China.

Mi Feng, spokesperson for the National Health Commission, told a press conference on Saturday that authorities would continue to “strictly prohibit people from confined communities from leaving their homes.”

After recording two new cases on Sunday, the northeastern city of Harbin closed two housing complexes, closed schools and kindergartens for a week, and suspended intercity bus services.


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