Chinese Authorities Apologize for COVID Break-ins

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(Newser)

Authorities in southern China apologized for breaking into the homes of people quarantined with suspected COVID-19 cases in the latest example of heavy-handed measures that have sparked a rare public backlash. The state-run Global Times reported Tuesday that 84 homes of people sent into isolation in Guangzhou city’s Liwan district were opened in an effort to find close contacts remaining inside and to disinfect the premises. The doors were later sealed and new locks installed, the paper reported.

The district government apologized for such “oversimplified and violent” behavior, the paper said. An investigation team has been set up to investigate and “relevant people” will be severely punished, it said. China’s leadership has maintained its hardline “zero-COVID” policy despite the mounting economic costs and disruption to the lives of ordinary citizens, who continue to be subjected to routine testing and quarantines, even while the rest of the world has opened up to living with the disease, the AP reports.


Numerous cases of police and health workers breaking into homes around China in the name of anti-COVID-19 measures have been documented on social media. In some, doors have been broken down and residents threatened with punishment, even when they tested negative for the virus. Authorities have demanded keys to lock in residents of apartment buildings where cases have been detected, steel barriers have been erected to prevent them leaving their compounds, and iron bars have been welded over doors. (Read more China stories.)

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