The Washington PostThe Washington Post

The world needs China to come clean about its Covid deaths

16 Jan 2023 · 4 min read

Editor's Note

China's failure to acknowledge the true extent of the pandemic constitutes a threat to public health worldwide, the Post claims. The release of new data on Saturday was a step in the right direction.

Scenes from a troubling recent Washington Post report out of China: Nearly 100 people waiting in line at 3 a.m. outside a funeral home in the eastern province of Shandong. Scalpers selling slots for cremation in Shanghai, jacking up the price as though they were concert tickets. A Beijing funeral home that constructed an extra parking lot last month, with more than 100 cars visible in a satellite image.

These snapshots confirmed what most people already suspected - that China's hasty exit from its "zero covid" policy has caused massive suffering and death - a fact China finally acknowledged on Saturday after intense international pressure. Until that point, Chinese officials had reported just 37 covid deaths since Dec. 7, when all testing, quarantine and lockdown measures were lifted. Suddenly that number has soared to 59,938.

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