As China Doubles Down on Lockdowns, Some Chinese Seek an Exit

Clara Xie had long wondered whether she might leave China one day. She chafed at the country’s censorship regime, and as a lesbian, she wanted to live in a country more accepting of same-sex relationships. Still, the idea felt distant — she was young, and didn’t even know which country she would choose. The coronavirus, and China’s stringent efforts to stop it, thrust the question to the front of her mind. Two years of travel restrictions have made it impossible for Ms. Xie, 25, to see her girlfriend, who lives…

Students Protest Covid Lockdowns at Elite Beijing University

A group of students at a campus of China’s elite Peking University protested strict Covid-19 lockdown requirements on Sunday, arguing that the measures were poorly communicated and unfair. The government quickly moved to censor videos and photos that spread on China’s internet. The students were upset that they were unable to order food and that they were required to isolate, while teachers and their families were allowed to leave the campus freely, according to posts on a school forum and one student. The authorities tried to put up a wall…

As Shanghai’s Covid Cases Fall, China’s Restrictions Tighten

The Chinese authorities are tightening coronavirus restrictions in Shanghai and Beijing, heeding a message from the country’s top leader to double down on the zero-Covid strategy. In Shanghai, where residents have been under lockdown since April 1, private food delivery services were being suspended in some neighborhoods despite cases falling to a six-week low. Some residents were told not to step outside their homes, and that the government would help deliver groceries. In Beijing, where the daily case count rose to 74 on Monday, officials announced that schools would be…

Taiwan Pivots From ‘Zero Covid’ as Beijing Doubles Down

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Until recently, China and Taiwan were among the last places on earth to pursue a “zero Covid” policy of eliminating infections. For two years, they mostly succeeded in keeping the coronavirus out with tough border controls and rigorous contact tracing. Then came the highly transmissible Omicron variant. Faced with surging coronavirus cases, the two governments are now taking vastly different approaches. In China, the authorities are doubling down. They have imposed stringent lockdowns, mass testing and centralized quarantines for confirmed cases and close contacts. The glittering financial…

John Lee Wins Hong Kong’s Rubber-Stamp Election

HONG KONG — John Lee “will make Hong Kongers and international investors feel relaxed, at ease and full of confidence,” a pro-Beijing newspaper declared. He will help the city “start anew to achieve greater glories,” the state-run China Daily wrote, in one of a series of articles praising him. His rise to the top leadership position is “a concentrated embodiment of public opinion,” said China’s official arm in Hong Kong, though only 1,424 members of a government-vetted committee voted for him on Sunday, in an uncontested race controlled by Beijing.…

China’s Covid Lockdowns Leave Millions Out of Work

After over a month in lockdown, Zeng Jialin could finally return to the Shanghai auto parts factory where he had worked. He was about to be released from a quarantine facility, having recovered from Covid, and was desperate to make up for the many days of wages he had missed. But on Tuesday, the day he was supposed to be released, someone in the crowded isolation facility tested positive again. Mr. Zeng, 48, was ordered to wait 14 more days. “I have three kids, in college, middle school and elementary…

Beijing’s Covid Lockdowns: Close to My Home

Beijing’s Covid Lockdowns: Close to My Home Keith Bradsher�� Reporting from Beijing Keith Bradsher/The New York Times When the authorities admitted on April 24 that the city had a problem, residents quickly emptied supermarket shelves. With the city’s help, businesses fully restocked, and stockpiling by residents has slowed. NYT

Beijing Covid Outbreak: New Restrictions Imposed, but No Full Lockdown

With new cases of the coronavirus continuing to accumulate in Beijing, officials over the weekend introduced sweeping new restrictions while stopping short of a full lockdown, a sign of the political and economic challenges that controlling an outbreak in China’s capital poses. As the five-day May Day holiday began on Saturday, local officials announced a ban on dining in restaurants until Wednesday. They also said that as of Thursday, proof of a negative test within the last week would be required to enter public spaces, including public transportation. And they…

Inside China’s Zero-Covid Fortress, Xi Jinping Admits No Doubts

China’s leader, Xi Jinping, waved at crowds of giddily cheering students. He held meetings with Olympic Games officials, economic policymakers and European leaders. He toured a tropical island. But there was a revealing gap in Mr. Xi’s busy itinerary last month, exposing the predicament that Covid is creating in a politically crucial year when he hopes to extend his hold on power. He stayed behind the scenes when it came to China’s biggest, most contentious lockdown since the pandemic began. Throughout April, Mr. Xi gave no public speeches focused on…

Beijing Closes Schools as It Tries to Contain an Outbreak

Schools in Beijing, where a coronavirus outbreak has alarmed Chinese leaders, were closed on Friday and dozens of buildings remained under lockdown, as a five-day holiday weekend approached. The Chinese capital has recorded more than 200 cases since April 22, according to officials — a tiny number most anywhere else in the world, but cause for concern for officials in China, where the coronavirus has been kept largely under control for two years. The central government is still adhering to a policy of trying to stamp out local transmission, rather…