China reports major drop in virus cases in locked-down Xi’an


China on Wednesday reported a major drop in COVID-19 infections in the northern city of Xi’an, which has been under a tight lockdown for the past two weeks that has sharply disrupted the lives of its 13 million residents.

The National Health Commission announced just 35 new cases in Xi’an, home to the famed Terracotta Warriors statues along with major industries, down from 95 the day before.

That marks a steady decline since daily new cases topped 100, prompting officials to retain and in some cases tighten restrictions on people leaving their homes.

Xi’an has reported more than 1,600 cases but no deaths in its latest surge. That’s a small number compared to outbreaks in other countries, a sign that China’s “zero tolerance” strategy of quarantining every case, mass testing and trying to block new infections from abroad has helped it contain major outbreaks.

The lockdowns, however, are far more stringent than anything seen in the West, and have exacted a tremendous toll on the economy and disrupted the lives of millions of people.

News of people in Xi’an seeking u

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