Chinese city affected by COVID asks residents to stay at home as holiday begins – .

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Chinese city affected by COVID asks residents to stay at home as holiday begins – .


BEIJING (Reuters) – A city in southeast China affected by COVID-19 told residents to stay at home on Saturday and closed various locations, as infections spread in the country’s last hotspot for a season key to vacation travel.
The Xiamen government, in a series of notices, urged residents not to leave their homes unnecessarily, closed parks, scenic spots and sports venues, and halted mass activities including tours, fairs and shows.

The measures – unless a full lockdown – came on the first of the four-day Mid-Autumn Festival holiday, a peak travel season across China.

Xiamen, a picturesque city of 5 million people, is one of four cities in Fujian Province – China’s latest coronavirus hotspot – that have reported cases in recent days.

Visitors to Xiamen residential complexes are not allowed without approval, the movement of non-essential vehicles inside and outside residential areas is prohibited, and meals in restaurants, cafes and other places are prohibited.

Also a transportation hub for southeast China, Xiamen has reported 92 locally transmitted infections over the past week. That’s about half the number of nearby Putian, where the first infection in this outbreak was reported on September 10.

The first patient in the Xiamen cluster was in close contact with a case in Putian, authorities in Xiamen said on Monday.

The two cities launched citywide testing for the coronavirus on Tuesday.

As of September 10, Fujian Province has reported 292 community infections.

The outbreak comes ahead of the week-long National Day break starting on October 1, a much busier tourist season than the Mid-Autumn Festival.

The last national epidemic from late July to August spread to dozens of Chinese cities, hitting China’s tourism, hospitality and transportation sectors.

(Reporting by Ryan Woo; Editing by William Mallard)

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