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China COVID-19 cases rising amid backlash over lockdown death

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As protests emerged in China over the death of a 3-year-old boy while in lockdown, Chinese officials reported COVID-19 cases in the country are the highest they’ve been in two and a half months. China reported 3,200 daily local COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the first tally above 3,000 since Aug. 17.

Hong Kong and China stocks fell, ending a two-day rally. Confidence was hit by the rising COVID-19 count and the Federal Reserve’s latest raising of U.S. interest rates. Chinese stocks had soared this week on speculation that Beijing would ease its “dynamic zero-COVID” policy.

“There may be some easing on zero-COVID, but temper your expectations,” Nomura analysts wrote. They added that a “real reopening” becomes more likely only after March, when China completes a political transition culminating with its annual parliamentary gathering.

The rise in cases comes amid a new wave of outrage at the zero-COVID policy. That wave, triggered by the death of a 3-year-old boy following a suspected gas leak at a residential compound under COVID-19 lockdown in northwestern China.

The boy’s father claimed in a social media post that COVID-19 workers tried to prevent him from leaving their compound to seek treatment for his child. The father said this caused a delay he believes proved fatal.

“My child might have been saved if he had been taken to the hospital sooner,” he wrote.

The post was met with an outpouring of public anger and grief. Several related hashtags racked up hundreds of millions of views over the following day on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like platform.

“Three years of pandemic was his entire life,” a popular comment read.

Reuters and CNN contributed to this report.

THIS ELECTION’S ‘TOP ISSUES’ FOR VOTERS ARE MUCH DIFFERENT FROM 20-20’S.
THE CORONAVIRUS WAS A CONSISTENT CONCERN ACROSS THE BOARD.
NOW…IT’S NEARLY NONEXISTENT IN POLLS OR POLITICAL ADS.
PARTIALLY BECAUSE IT’S NOT PART OF OUR EVERY-DAY LIFE ANYMORE…
A STARK DIFFERENCE COMPARED TO WHAT’S HAPPENING IN CHINA.
CHINA’S ZERO COVID POLICY HAS BEEN LONG-STANDING.
AND BEIJING IS VOWING TO KEEP THE COURSE.
THE LOCKDOWNS ARE FORCING QUARANTINES…TESTING…AND CONSTANT ONLINE MONITORING.
NEW BACKLASH HAS SPARKED IN CHINA…PROTESTS HAVE BROKE OUT IN THE STREETS…CALLING FOR AN END TO THEIR EXTREME PANDEMIC RESPONSE.
THIS TIME…AFTER A TODDLER DIED…LOCKED INSIDE A BUILDING WITH A GAS LEAK.
HIS TRIP TO A HOSPITAL WAS ALLEGEDLY DELAYED BECAUSE HEALTH OFFICIALS WERE ENFORCING THE LOCKDOWN AND CURFEW.
THE BOY WAS THREE YEARS OLD.
HIS LIFETIME SPANNING THE COURSE OF THE ALMOST THREE YEARS SINCE THE PANDEMIC BEGAN.

Media Landscape

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18 Other sources covering this story

Bias Distribution

L 27%
C 36%
R 36%

36% of the sources are Center

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As protests emerged in China over the death of a 3-year-old boy while in lockdown, Chinese officials reported COVID-19 cases in the country are the highest they’ve been in two and a half months. China reported 3,200 daily local COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the first tally above 3,000 since Aug. 17.

Hong Kong and China stocks fell, ending a two-day rally. Confidence was hit by the rising COVID-19 count and the Federal Reserve’s latest raising of U.S. interest rates. Chinese stocks had soared this week on speculation that Beijing would ease its “dynamic zero-COVID” policy.

“There may be some easing on zero-COVID, but temper your expectations,” Nomura analysts wrote. They added that a “real reopening” becomes more likely only after March, when China completes a political transition culminating with its annual parliamentary gathering.

The rise in cases comes amid a new wave of outrage at the zero-COVID policy. That wave, triggered by the death of a 3-year-old boy following a suspected gas leak at a residential compound under COVID-19 lockdown in northwestern China.

The boy’s father claimed in a social media post that COVID-19 workers tried to prevent him from leaving their compound to seek treatment for his child. The father said this caused a delay he believes proved fatal.

“My child might have been saved if he had been taken to the hospital sooner,” he wrote.

The post was met with an outpouring of public anger and grief. Several related hashtags racked up hundreds of millions of views over the following day on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like platform.

“Three years of pandemic was his entire life,” a popular comment read.

Reuters and CNN contributed to this report.

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