Trace of COVID: China orders disinfection of international mail

COVID trace: China orders disinfection of international mail

UPDATE DAY

Beijing | China Post has ordered its employees to systematically disinfect shipments from overseas, with authorities citing the possibility of the Omicron strain arriving in the country on mail sent from Canada. 

With less than three weeks to go before the Beijing Winter Olympics (February 4-20), authorities fear their Zero COVID policy will be undermined by a string of limited outbreaks.

The country where the pandemic was initially detected at the end of 2019 and has largely stemmed the contagion, but has been faced with sporadic outbreaks for the past few weeks.

The number of new daily cases in China, however, rarely exceeds the 200 mark.

Last weekend, the city of Beijing reported the first case of the highly contagious Omicron variant in a person who had received a letter from Canada, on which traces of the virus were found.

As a result , the postal services have been ordered to disinfect “as soon as possible” letters and parcels from abroad. Employees in contact with these objects are also invited to receive a booster dose of the anti-COVID vaccine.

Citizens are also called upon to reduce their orders “from countries and regions at high risk of COVID”, announced the Post Office in a notice.

Domestic mail will now be sorted separately, in order to avoid any risk of contamination from international shipments.

While the origin of the coronavirus has not been determined, China favors the theory that the disease could have been introduced from abroad, in particular via frozen foods.

The World Health Organization health (WHO) said it doubted such a possibility, noting that the risk of transmission of the virus via inanimate surfaces was low and decreased over time.

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