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Global Times

Harbin district raises risk level amid mounting imported case pressure

Global Times Published: 2020/4/15 23:22:19

A district in Harbin, capital city of Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, on Wednesday raised the risk level for coronavirus infection as it faces massive pressure from imported cases from Russia.

According to an announcement released by the Daowai district authority on Wednesday afternoon, the district raised the infection risk level from low to medium and began to initiate a second level emergency response to the pandemic.

China has a four-tier response system for public health emergencies that determines what measures it will implement, with level one being the most serious.

Under this risk level, residents in all communities can only enter and exit with a permit, which means one person in one household can go outside every two days. Meanwhile, one permit can grant a one-time exit and it becomes invalid when expired. All people and vehicles outside are prohibited from entering the communities.

Many netizens said it is limited to raise the risk level for one district and similar measures should be taken on a wider scale.

A rumor circulating online said Harbin is about to seal off the city and highways are closed which the transportation management bureau denied on Wednesday night, saying that the highways are operating normally except for some sections which were closed for maintenance work.

Existing confirmed infections in Heilongjiang jumped to 257, with 246 imported cases as of Sunday, surpassing the remaining number of 244 cases in hard-hit Central China's Hubei Province, data showed.

Authorities in Hubei Province on Wednesday announced they will send medical supplies and protective gear valued at 30 million yuan ($4.3 million) to Heilongjiang.

The first batch of the materials will be delivered as emergency assistance to the city of Suifenhe, a city bordering Russia. As of Monday, 322 imported cases were reported in the city and the total of silent carriers reached 38.

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