Two northern Chinese cities in lockdown after local cases detected

BEIJING : China reported nine new domestically transmitted Covid-19 cases on Monday, the highest daily tally since the end of last month, with the latest outbreak prompting two northern border areas to enforce a lockdown.

Under a national policy of zero tolerance of domestic coronavirus clusters, cities with new infections have quickly tracked down and tested contacts of the infected people and sealed off higher-risk areas.

Five of the nine new local cases were found in the northwestern city of Xi'an in Shaanxi province, and two were in the northern Chinese region of Inner Mongolia, data from the National Health Commission showed yesterday.

Erenhot city in Inner Mongolia, which shares a border with Mongolia, advised its 76,000 residents on Monday not to leave their residential compounds except when necessary.

As at yesterday morning, it had reported four local cases since Oct 13.

Ejina Banner, an administrative division in another part of Inner Mongolia, has closed all entrance and exit channels, launched a testing scheme for its 36,000 population and suspended school, local authorities said. - REUTERS