The massive Chinese city of Shanghai, with an estimated population of around 26 million, has been severely constrained under harsh and strictly enforced lockdown orders ostensibly due to an outbreak of the latest COVID-19 variant.
That excessive response from the Chinese Communist Party, in conjunction with the reported outbreak, prompted the U.S. State Department to order all non-emergency staffers and all family members of the Shanghai consulate to depart the city immediately, the Daily Caller reported.
That order changed from voluntary to mandatory a similar advisory for Shanghai consulate employees and their families that was issued last week.
Non-emergency personnel and family members were ordered to leave
The Daily Caller noted that China’s communist regime imposed the brutal lockdown on Shanghai on March 28 which has essentially locked millions of residents in their homes and led to people starving from lack of food, families being forcibly split apart as individuals who test positive are removed to quarantine camps and even the slaughter of the pets of those who are infected or short on supplies.
Given all of that, as well as surging positive case numbers, the State Department on Saturday issued a travel advisory urging Americans to reconsider any travel plans to certain regions in China, especially Shanghai, and authorized the voluntary departure of non-emergency personnel and family members.
Just two days later, though, a separate follow-up release noted that “The movement from ‘authorized’ to ‘ordered’ departure means that we are now mandating that certain employees depart Shanghai rather than making this decision voluntary.”
It was further noted that U.S. officials “have continuously raised our concerns about the safety and welfare of U.S. citizens” to the Chinese government, likely to little or no avail.
Essential personnel would continue to operate the Shanghai consulate in a limited fashion and the ordered departure of others — and strongly advised departure of all U.S. citizens — would be reviewed intermittently and as conditions on the ground changed going forward.
Harsh lockdown measures unwarranted?
The Associated Press reported that, as of Tuesday and according to Chinese authorities, more than 23,000 new COVID cases had been reported, bringing the total number of reported infections and positive test results to more than 200,000 cases since the outbreak began in the city of 26 million residents.
However, less than a thousand of those total cases were described as symptomatic, and not a single additional death due to COVID has been reported during the current wave — which seemingly calls into question the necessity of the harsh measures imposed on the populace.
State Department spokesman Ned Price was asked during Tuesday’s press briefing about the departure order and the administration’s view of the communist regime’s lockdown measures.
However, like nearly all other communications officials in the Biden administration when pressed on a sensitive topic, particularly about China, Price simply rehashed the State Department release and deftly avoided any sort of direct criticism of the brutal impositions on Shanghai’s residents.