Beijing closes food market amid fears of second wave of coronavirus

Monday, 15 Jun, 2020

The six new domestic cases announced on Saturday included three Xinfadi market workers, one market visitor, and two employees at the China Meat Research Centre.

Seven other cases were reported on Thursday and Friday.

A city spokesman told the briefing that all six COVID-19 patients confirmed in Beijing on Friday had visited the Xinfadi market.

A new cluster of Covid-19 cases has been discovered in Beijing, with infections being linked to a local food market.

In South Korea, officials reported 49 new cases of the coronavirus on Saturday, majority in the densely populated Seoul metropolitan area, where health authorities have been struggling to slow transmissions linked to entertainment and leisure activities, church gatherings and low-income workers who couldn't afford to stay home.

Parts of Beijing are back on a "wartime" footing after a cluster of locally transmitted coronavirus cases emerged, almost two months after the Chinese capital appeared to have stamped out the virus.

"Wartime-like" disease control measures have been deployed in Beijing's Fengtai District, local media reported, citing officials. A plan to allow Beijing's first- through third-graders to resume classes Monday was canceled.

Beijing health official Pang Xinghuo said at a second press conference on Sunday that these eight cases are all linked to Xinfadi market, a major food wholesale market in the city's southwestern Fengtai district. A total of 13 asymptomatic cases were discharged from medical observation.

Chinese police guarding the entrance to the closed Xinfadi market in Fengtai district yesterday. The district has gone into
Beijing closes food market amid fears of second wave of coronavirus

State-run Xinhua news agency said the Xinfadi market has a total area of 112 hectares, some 1,500 management personnel and more than 4,000 tenants.

They are said to be unsure of how far the virus has spread from the Xinfadi wholesale market, which is said to supply 80 percent of Beijing's vegetables and meat.

The Xinfadi market along with another seafood market visited by one of the carriers have now been closed.

One person at an agricultural market in the city's northwestern Haidian district also tested positive for the coronavirus without showing symptoms, Chu said.

Sporting events, group dining and cross-provincial tour groups have also been stopped.

The second new case was a 50-year-old male from the city of Baoding, Hebei Province.

The National Health Commission (NHC) said in a statement that five of the new confirmed patients were so-called imported cases involving travelers from overseas. The market also includes wholesale sections dedicated to beef, lamb and seafood.

The world is seeing more than 100,000 newly confirmed cases every day, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.