China’s Zero Covid Policy: Beijing on Wednesday termed the remarks by the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) on China’s ‘zero Kovid’ policy as “irresponsible”. WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Tuesday that China’s zero tolerance strategy is not sustainable and it is time for a change in approach.
Tedros’ remarks were not covered by China’s state media and were censored on social media as well, and only one response came with the official response coming to the foreign ministry’s regular news conference.
Spokesperson Zhao Lijian said, “We hope that the person concerned can see the Chinese COVID-19 policy objectively and rationally and know the facts instead of making irresponsible remarks.”
WHO comment removed from Weibo
According to Reuters, a United Nations Weibo post featuring Tedros’ remarks was removed from platforms such as Twitter soon after they were posted. The United Nations and Weibo did not respond to requests for comment on the issue. WeChat, another platform, disabled the sharing of one such post by the United Nations, citing “violation of the rules”.
Millions of people banned
After a ‘zero Covid’ policy, hundreds of millions of people in dozens of Chinese cities have been placed under various degrees of restrictions, most dramatically in Shanghai, causing significant economic damage in China and beyond. Authorities in Shanghai (now in its sixth week of a widespread lockdown) said on Wednesday that half the city had achieved “zero Covid” status, but restrictions would remain in place.
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