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China stops freight trains to North Korea

China stops freight trains to North Korea - Photo 1.

An employee is on duty to disinfect imported goods at a warehouse in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province (China) – Photo: SCMP

“Due to the COVID-19 situation in Dandong, after friendly consultations between the two sides, China decided to suspend the freight service from Dandong to Sinuiju,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian announced on the afternoon of April 29.

South Korea’s Yonhap news agency earlier cited private sources as saying that the Dandong government had stopped the train line at the request of North Korea.

North Korean state media has not yet commented. The suspension of the railway line carrying goods from China to North Korea comes just four months after Pyongyang eased epidemic prevention measures applied from 2020.

North Korea has not recorded any COVID-19 cases, but still applies strong epidemic prevention measures and is alert to the epidemic situation in surrounding countries.

Dandong city in Liaoning province, located right on the banks of the Yalu River is the natural border of China – Korea. The city is experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak with 220 infections recorded from April 22 to 27.

According to Reuters news agency, in response to COVID-19, Dandong has sealed off 77 residential areas and asked people coming from other places to quarantine. This is because China is experiencing the most severe outbreak since the Wuhan wave 2020.

In Beijing, authorities have closed many gyms, shopping malls, cinemas and blocked apartment complexes in parallel with increasing tracing to stop the chain of infection.

The city of Hangzhou of 12 million people in Zhejiang province also applies strict epidemic prevention regulations, requiring people to have a PCR test every 48 hours. About 6,500 sampling points have been set up across the city for this purpose.

Starting April 30, people must present a negative test result to enter residential areas, offices, train stations and other public places in Hangzhou, according to the report. South China Morning Post.

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