While it looks like it’s time for a slow and gradual reopening, the daily lives of hundreds of millions of Chinese people continue to be marked by health restrictions. According to videos posted on Chinese social media on Tuesday, December 6, students protested against the detention of their university in eastern China.
The videos, geolocated by Agence France-Presse (AFP), show a crowd of students at Nanking University of Technology protesting to leave the campus. “Your power comes from the students, not from you”A participant yells at a manager. “Be of service to the students!” » A third-year student, who wished to remain anonymous, told AFP the protest erupted after the school announced the campus would be sealed off for five days following the discovery of a positive case.
In the video, students can be seen arguing with university officials. “If you touch us, it will be a new Foxconn here! »A young man shouts, referring to last month’s violent protests by workers at a Chinese factory where the Taiwanese company makes iPhones for Apple.
Several cities are gradually easing their zero-covid strategy after major protests in late November, while several Chinese universities have been locked down under the health policy. Their students must apply to leave and visitors are prohibited.
As of Monday, 53 cities representing a third of China’s 1.4 billion people were implementing some form of travel restrictions, according to calculations by Nomura Bank.
Following large demonstrations in late November in a dozen cities against the zero-Covid policy, authorities stepped up police presence and monitoring of social networks. During the rallies held at the end of November, mostly young people demanded the removal of restrictions that have affected their lives and their plans since 2020. Hundreds, if not thousands, of students protested from their campuses. Prestigious University from Tsinghua to Xi’an (Center), Condon (South) or Wuhan (Central).
Along with the repressive component, the authorities have relaxed some restrictions. The city of Beijing announced on Tuesday that businesses, including office buildings and supermarkets, will no longer be required to provide a negative PCR test. Several major cities, such as Shanghai or Hangzhou, have also reduced their testing requirements.