Xinjiang starts to ease Covid-19 lockdown after surge in social media anger

  • Residents have been trapped in their homes for more than a month despite no new cases for past 10 days
  • Censored complaints mostly from Han Chinese, highlighting difficulties in assessing reports from largely Muslim region

China has relaxed some Covid-19 lockdown measures on the city of Urumqi in Xinjiang following a surge of complaints about their severity on Chinese social media.

The city of 3.5 million people, which has been in strict lockdown since mid-July, has reported no new cases of the disease since August 16.Xinjiang residents flooded social media platform Weibo with complaints about the restrictions which had kept them trapped at home for more than a month. There have also been claims people were forced to take traditional Chinese medicine, which has not been proven to alleviate Covid-19 symptoms.