Hong Kong to Impose First-Ever Lockdown in Kowloon Area

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  • Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Hong Kong to Impose First-Ever Lockdown in Kowloon Area” – below is their description.

    Hong Kong is preparing to lock down thousands of residents in a bid to contain a worsening outbreak of the coronavirus, local media outlets reported Friday, citing unidentified people.

    The lockdown is expected to begin this weekend, and involve 150 residential buildings in Yau Tsim Mong, the core urban district of Kowloon, the South China Morning Post said. It will affect between 4,000 and 9,000 residents, covering a mandatory testing area where aging buildings and subdivided flats populated by lower-income families are common.

    While reports first emerged early on Friday that the lockdown was coming, by 5 p.m. the government was still declining to comment, leading to confusion as media outlets revised their reporting. SCMP earlier said that the lockdown would impact tens of thousands of people and would include parts of Sham Shui Po, but it later scaled back those numbers and said the district would not be affected.

    A spokeswoman for Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s office referred queries to the city’s food and health bureau. A representative for the bureau declined to comment, while Chuang Shuk-Kwan, a Hong Kong health official, also declined to comment on lockdown speculation during a daily briefing.

    The benchmark Hang Seng Index dropped on the news, closing 1.6% lower Friday.

    The reported measures pale in comparison with the lockdowns adopted in mainland China, where a hardline approach bans people from leaving cities, districts or even their apartment complexes. But it still would be one of the most severe steps Hong Kong has taken to control the pathogen, and a blow to the government’s approach of trying to keep the economy largely running during the pandemic.

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    In This Story: COVID-19

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  • In This Story: Hong Kong

    Hong Kong, officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China (HKSAR), is a metropolitan area and special administrative region of the People’s Republic of China on the eastern Pearl River Delta of the South China Sea. With over 7.5 million residents of various nationalities in a 1,104-square-kilometre (426 sq mi) territory, Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated places in the world.

    Hong Kong became a colony of the British Empire after the Qing Empire ceded Hong Kong Island at the end of the First Opium War in 1842. The colony expanded to the Kowloon Peninsula in 1860 after the Second Opium War and was further extended when Britain obtained a 99-year lease of the New Territories in 1898. The whole territory was transferred to China in 1997. As a special administrative region, Hong Kong maintains separate governing and economic systems from that of mainland China under the principle of “one country, two systems”.

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  • In This Story: Lockdown

    During the 2020 Covid-19 epidemic, lockdown has come to mean the practice of attempting to control transmission of the virus by means of restricting people’s movement and activities on a broad scale, usually on a national or state-wide basis.

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