“Zero Covid” policy in China: a journalist recounts her journey of more than 5 hours to leave the airport

"Zero Covid" policy in China: a journalist recounts her journey of more than 5 hours to leave the airport

Exiting the plane row by row, multiple temperature readings, PCR tests and ten-day isolation … On her Twitter account, a French journalist testifies to the psychosis that has gripped China, still strict in its policy. “zero Covid”.

China does not seem ready to relax its health rules put in place to counter the Covid-19 epidemic. The country’s authorities continue to impose drastic standards on its citizens to avoid contamination, as part of a “zero covid” policy described as unsustainable by the World Health Organization (WHO) last May. However, nothing seems to have changed during the summer, as testified this Wednesday August 17 a French journalist on her Twitter account.

Disinfection, temperature taking and isolation

Justine Jankowski, TF1 correspondent in the country of the Middle Empire, recounts her incredible journey to reach Beijing. To be able to board her plane bound for Tianjin – international flights are no longer authorized to land in Beijing – the young woman had to present two negative virological tests.

Flashback: to get on the plane you also had to provide 2 PCR tests, which must be carried out in laboratories recognized by the #China, – 48h and -24h, with more than 24h difference between the two. Come on, I’ll try it… A real Chinese puzzle.

— Justine Jankowski (@JustineJankows1) August 17, 2022

This measure came into force on June 30 and the website of the Ministry of the Interior specifies that “these 2 tests must be carried out within 48 hours before boarding with a time interval greater than 24 hours. The second test must be made within 24 hours prior to boarding”.

Departure of the plane row by row

Arrival on the Chinese tarmac, it’s a real adventure that begins for newcomers, as Justine Jankowski testifies. The passengers of his plane had to leave the aircraft row by row, before crossing an empty terminal to a first thermal camera.

After the disinfection of their luggage, travelers – no tourists, the granting of visas having been suspended since March 23, 2020 – must submit to a second temperature measurement, then scan their administrative documents themselves, guided by an electronic voice. and supervised by personnel in anti-contamination suits.

Five hours to leave the airport

Even the baggage claim procedure has been changed to avoid shuffling. The journalist indicates that she finally left the airport more than five hours after landing, not without having had to undergo two new disinfection tests and a PCR test.

After 5 hours spent at the airport + 1 hour by bus, arrival at the quarantine hotel. New disinfection of luggage, and humans pic.twitter.com/P1vJwJCHSl

— Justine Jankowski (@JustineJankows1) August 17, 2022

She was finally able to reach a quarantine hotel! Because China imposes strict isolation on all newcomers to its soil. Prohibition to leave his room for seven days, then control at home for three additional days. Until the end of June, the isolation was even 21 days. During her ten days of isolation, the TF1 journalist will have to perform six PCR tests.

A real Covid psychosis in the country

The pressure put by the Chinese authorities has created a real psychosis in the country around the Covid-19. On August 13, scenes of chaos were filmed at an IKEA in Shanghai. In the images, we can see customers trying to flee the store after the announcement of the passage on the shelves a few days earlier of a child who tested positive for Covid-19. In accordance with official procedure, all of the store’s customers had to undergo a period of isolation of 48 hours and five days of health monitoring.

上海徐汇宜家要禁止出入配合流行病学调查,吓得顾客赶快逃亡。在病毒被消灭之前尕倂要在丛冇 pic.twitter.com/dAWbpbln7v

— 方舟子 (@fangshimin) August 14, 2022

READ ALSO – Chaos in an Ikea in Shanghai: after a positive case detected, customers try to flee to avoid quarantine

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