As China fights the worst Covid-19 outbreak since the Wuhan pandemic began two years ago, Chinese officials have pledged to alleviate food shortages for residents trapped at home in Xi’an.
Residents of Central China City 13m They complained on social media that due to store closures and a significant reduction in activities, their food stores had insufficient inventory and it was difficult to purchase more supplies.
In many parts of the city, residents can only leave their homes for mandatory Covid-19 testing and must rely on sporadic delivery services to replenish goods.
“The shops here do not open, and if they do, we still can’t go downstairs,” said a Xi’an resident on the social media platform Weibo.
“All we can do is add a shopkeeper’s WeChat account and sneak out at night. Buying food is like being a thief,” the person added.
Last week, a video of the city’s epidemic prevention workers beating a resident who left the apartment to buy food went viral on social media. The video showed that when the worker pushed him, six steamed buns overflowed from the man’s bag.
The city police said on Saturday that they had detained the two workers who attacked the man and imposed a fine of 200 yuan (31 U.S. dollars) on each of them.
Another resident of the city complained that a bag of vegetables would cost 150 yuan, while others said they had difficulties in obtaining medicines and other necessities.
“Next, we will continue to strengthen the quality, price and supply of the people, and increase care and support for special groups,” said Lin Jianwen, a senior official of the municipal government.
He added that the government is providing bags of free vegetables to hundreds of apartment buildings.
Compared with infection rates in most other countries, the number of cases in Xi’an is negligible, with 122 new cases reported on Saturday. But when the Chinese Communist Party seeks to maintain the country’s “zero coronavirus” strategy, it treats every outbreak as a crisis.
Since mid-December, the city’s epidemic has infected 1,573 people and nearly 96% of residents have been vaccinated against Covid-19.
Some manufacturers, including Samsung Electronics and Micron Technology, have warned that the blockade measures may disrupt their chip manufacturing in the region.
Officials blamed the Delta variant for the Xi’an epidemic and determined to shut out Omicron before the opening of the Beijing Winter Olympics on February 4 under a strict “bubble” agreement.
Chinese authorities reported 131 new cases of community-transmitted Covid-19 in the country on Saturday, down from 175 the day before.