The Shanghai Disney park is the latest high-profile site to close its doors under China’s strict zero-contagion policy, leaving a group of tourists stranded.
That’s what they were told will not be able to leave the theme park until they show three negative tests.
The news comes after Shanghai reported on Saturday at least 10 cases from covid transmitted locally.
China’s controversial zero covid policy did millions of people were seen repeatedly lockedsometimes in unusual places.
In addition, the sudden nature of these closures made people desperately trying to escape from stores, including one of the Shanghai branches of Swedish furniture giant Ikea, and from workplaces to try to avoid the trap.
But those waiting for freedom in the Disney park found solace in one thing: attractions will continue to operate for those who were trapped inside the “happiest place on earth”.
In addition to the park, surrounding areas such as the shopping street were also closed suddenly shortly after 11:30 a.m. local time on Monday (3:30 GMT).
Videos posted on the Chinese social network Weibo showed people running towards the park’s gates shortly after the announcement, only to find them already locked.
In a post on the Chinese social network WeChat, the Shanghai government said the park was banning people from entering and that those inside would only be allowed out after testing negative for Covid.
He added that anyone who has visited the park since Thursday must give three negative test results on three consecutive days.
No date has been given for the park’s reopening. Shanghai Disney said the tickets would be valid for six months and would be refunded.
Insisting on eradication
The current closure comes just two days after the park began operating at reduced capacity to comply with covid measures.
It is not the first time that the park is suddenly closed.
Last November, 30,000 people were trapped inside after authorities ordered everyone to be tested for Covid as part of contact tracing.
Almost three years after China reported its first case of the coronavirus, authorities across the country continue to impose sudden and extreme measures aimed at completely stopping the spread of the virus.
As of October 24, millions of people are under 200 individual quarantines in different parts of China, which the country of 1.45 billion people has been continuously recording more than 1000 new covid cases per day.
The figures are considered relatively small outbreaks in other parts of the world.
However, earlier this month, Chinese President Xi Jinping made it clear that the zero-sum policy against Covid, which aims to eliminate all outbreaks, would not be eased, calling it a “people’s war to stop the spread of the virus”.
The Chinese government’s insistence on increasingly unpopular policies comes as the economy continues to suffer, with GDP falling 2.6% in the three months to the end of June from the previous quarter.
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