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What you need to know about the coronavirus right now

reuters.com · 04/29/2022 07:54
What you need to know about the coronavirus right now

- Here's what you need to know about the pandemic right now:

Beijing sees more COVID closures as anger grows in Shanghai

China's capital Beijing closed more businesses and residential compounds on Friday, with authorities ramping up contact tracing to contain a COVID-19 outbreak, while resentment grew at the month-long lockdown in Shanghai. nL3N2WR0GJ

In Shanghai, fenced-in people have been protesting against the lockdown and difficulties in obtaining provisions by banging on pots and pans in the evenings, according to a Reuters witness and residents.

As many as 12.38 million Shanghai residents, nearly half the city' population, are now in lower-risk areas, meaning they can leave their homes, the government said on Friday. nL2N2WR05C

Shanghai's lockdown is driving scores of foreign residents to leave, denting the appeal of mainland China's most cosmopolitan city. nL3N2WG1AC

Beijing's zero-COVID strategy has had dire consequences for the millions of Chinese living abroad, most of whom have been unable to see family and friends at home for two years even as the rest of the world eases travel restrictions. nL3N2WN1LM

South Africa says it may be entering fifth COVID wave

South Africa may be entering a fifth COVID wave earlier than expected after a sustained rise in infections over the past 14 days that seems to be driven by the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron sub-variants, health officials and scientists said on Friday.

South Africa, which has recorded the most coronavirus cases and deaths on the African continent, exited a fourth wave only around January and had predicted a fifth wave could start in May or June, early in the southern hemisphere winter. nL2N2WR0DE

South Korea lifts outdoor mask mandate

South Korea said on Friday it will lift an outdoor face mask mandate next week in the country's latest step to ease COVID restrictions, despite opposition from the incoming government which labelled the decision "premature".

Italy orders mask wearing for some indoor venues until mid-June

Face masks will remain compulsory in Italy on public transport and in some indoor venues until June 15, the health minister said on Thursday.

Masks will still be required to access cinemas, theatres, indoor events and to enter hospitals, Health Minister Roberto Speranza said, adding that the government intends to be cautious in lifting the remaining measures. nL5N2WQ8ID

Ecuador lifts indoor and outdoor mask mandates

Ecuador will immediately lift mask mandates for both indoor and outdoor spaces thanks to significant gains made against coronavirus, President Guillermo Lasso said on Thursday.


(Compiled by Linda Noakes
Editing by Frances Kerry)