Over 10,000 Chinese waiting at China-Myanmar border city to turn themselves in: official
Published: Oct 02, 2021 02:47 PM
A drill on preventing imported COVID-9 cases exercised in Ruili File Photo: CFP

A drill on preventing imported COVID-9 cases exercised in Ruili File Photo: CFP

Due to a turbulent political situation, worsening coronavirus infection, over 10,000 Chinese nationals are waiting at Ruili, a China-Myanmar border city to turn themselves in, in order to return to China, putting great pressure on the border city Ruili as it struggles to fight imported COVID-19 cases. 

The flow of Chinese nationals, who plan to turn themselves in, waiting to cross the border into China hasn't stopped since June, an anonymous Ruili government official told the Global Times, noting that this comes after the government started to require Chinese nationals staying in northern Myanmar to register their identities. 

Another employee from Ruili customs authorities told the Global Times that there are roughly 10,000 Chinese nationals waiting at the border, but they are being delayed due to strict regulations.

"Only about one hundred people are allowed to cross the border to Ruili each day, and those people are immediately required to take a nucleic acid test, and any positive case is sent to a treatment facility; negative ones to quarantine," said the anonymous government official. 

Ruili government department told the media that due to Myanmar's unstable political situation, and worsening coronavirus inflection, plus the government's new regulation of requiring Chinese in Myanmar to register their identity, a large number of people who chose to come back to China planned to enter through Ruili, a China-Myanmar land border port.

In a move to crack down on cross-border crimes such as telecommunications fraud, several Chinese cities in multiple provinces, such as Hubei, Jiangxi and Henan issued notices for Chinese nationals with exit/entry documents issued by China to register their identity by a certain deadline. For example, Hubei city of Tianmen set the deadline as June 15. 

Tianmen government said people who turn themselves in will be dealt with lenience. 

"Those people have put great pressure on Ruili's pandemic-control work, now the city is facing risks of imported and domestic infection, plus it shoulders responsibility of quarantine management," said the customs official, noting that medical resources are strained. 

Ruili has experienced several waves of COVID-19 flare-ups, which propelled the city to strengthen controls over its border with Myanmar. Yunan reported 14 imported cases and four silent carriers of coronavirus on Saturday. They are all Chinese nationals who previously illegally went to Myanmar and decided to turn themselves in to the Chinese government.