Fourth round of domestic epidemic flare-up in China-Myanmar border city continues as one more domestic COVID-19 case detected in Ruili
Published: Aug 25, 2021 02:46 PM

Ruili port in Southwest China's Yunnan Province links the country with Myanmar. Photo: IC

Ruili port in Southwest China's Yunnan Province links the country with Myanmar. Photo: IC

China-Myanmar border city Ruili attracted public attention on Wednesday again as its fourth round of domestic epidemic flare-up shows no sign of end after one domestic COVID-19 case was reported, highlighting the complexity of border epidemic prevention and control.

The confirmed case was detected among the recent round of mass nucleic acid tests on Monday. The 64-year-old was confirmed infected with coronavirus on Tuesday. 

The Global Times learnt from local sources that Ruili had just lifted its residential lock down measures in recent days as the epidemic resurgence since July showed easing signs with only sporadic cases registered. 

However, it has never fundamentally stamped out the fourth wave of the epidemic flare-up due to the complexity of border epidemic prevention and control. The Global Times learned from a government source that despite Ruili's ramped up efforts to crack down on stowaways, the possibility of some people still trying to illegally cross the border from Ruili, a city which shares a 170-kilometer border line with Myanmar, cannot be ruled out. 

The flare-up starting from July 4 this year marked the fourth time the city has been hit by the COVID-19 epidemic.

The government source said since the epidemic began, Ruili has conducted more than 30 rounds of nucleic acid tests, a key method of detecting potential infected people. A local resident surnamed Jiang living in Ruili's Jiegao port, told the Global Times he had done about 6 times of nucleic acid tests in recent months. 

Ruili now has one high-risk epidemic region called the Jiegao Guomen community that physically borders Myanmar, and two other medium-risk regions. 

The Jiegao Guomen community issued a notice on Monday that all residents living in the community, both Chinese and Myanmar residents, are to be quarantined for 14 days in order to cut off the virus transmission route and tame the local outbreak. The Global Times learned that about 15,000 people have been quarantined.

Despite easing signs of epidemic control, Ruili has been keeping an intense attitude to fight the epidemic in the community and at the border line. The provincial officials in Yunnan Province visited Ruili over the weekend, urging local departments to boost their belief that Ruili will win over the virus and continue to pour efforts to enhance the periodical improved epidemic prevention and control.

The visiting provincial officials also urged the local government to ensure that people are protected and timely deal with all kinds of problems that residents encounter. 

The Global Times learnt from sources that have been affected by the epidemic that a large number of businessmen who had been operating shops in Ruili are seeking ways to go back to their hometowns. Now the government is processing their applications and nucleic acid test certificates. 

Besides the one domestic case, Ruili also reported six imported cases. The Global Times was told by the government source mentioned above that those imported patients were engaged in telecommunications and internet fraud cases. Their arrival may not have direct impact on local cases as they underwent closed-loop management once at the border checkpoints.