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Delta Variant Challenges China’s Costly Lockdown Strategy

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Residents line up to be tested for COVID-19 in Wuhan, central China's Hubei province Tuesday, Aug. 03, 2021. The coronavirus’s delta variant is challenging China’s costly strategy of isolating cities, prompting warnings that Chinese leaders who were confident they could keep the virus out of the country need a less disruptive approach. (Chinatopix via AP)

(AP) — The delta variant is challenging China’s costly strategy of isolating cities, prompting warnings that Chinese leaders who were confident they could keep out the coronavirus need a less disruptive approach. As the highly contagious variant pushes leaders elsewhere to renew restrictions, China is fighting its most serious outbreak in a year.

Beijing is reviving tactics that shut down China: Access to a city of 1.5 million people has been cut off, flights canceled and mass testing ordered in some areas. That “zero tolerance” strategy helped contain last year’s outbreak. But its impact on work and life for millions of people is prompting warnings China needs to find ways to control the virus without shutting down the country.

 

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