Residents continue to vent their frustrations from the lockdown.
China’s two largest cities tightened COVID-19 curbs on Monday, fuelling public anger and even questions about the legality of its COVID-19 virus measures and draconian laws in the world’s second-largest economy.
In Shanghai, enduring its sixth week of lockdown, authorities have launched a new push they say will put an end to infections outside quarantine zones by late May. Under China’s strict “zero-COVID” policy, most of Shanghai’s population of 26 million remains under a strict lockdown, with people depending on government deliveries of food and supplies.
As residents express their discontent with the government, more and more images and videos of Shanghai’s lockdown, depicting the frustration of people who have been confined to their homes for weeks, are making it past the censors.
Accounts from residents in several districts as well as social media posts showed the government accelerating and expanding efforts to transfer the close contacts of positive cases to central quarantine centers. Multiple residents said they were being required to move to such facilities, despite testing negative, after cases were found in their buildings, stoking frustrations leading to protest.
Other residents said they were told on Saturday by their housing compounds they would no longer be able to leave their front doors or estates or receive deliveries for a week as part of efforts to reach the goal of “zero cases at the community level” goal.
The Shanghai government did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Videos from last week show neighborhoods filled with the noise of residents protesting by banging pots and pans out their windows, demanding authorities provide more food and supplies; others show men yelling “give me back my freedom.”
One video features a woman’s voice coming out of a neighborhood loudspeaker, warning residents not to protest, and claiming the backlash towards Shanghai’s lockdown policy is a “conspiracy initiated by external forces.”