Israel’s Consul General to Shanghai, Eddie Shapira, was taken into custody by Chinese authorities last week and “hospitalized” after being diagnosed with mild symptoms of COVID-19.
The story he told in a post on Facebook reveals just how seriously the Chinese authorities are taking the issue of COVID-19 transmission, and how extreme are their efforts to prevent the disease from spreading.
“Trying to recover from what happened to me this week,” Shapira wrote in a Hebrew-language post.
“Let’s start from the end – I got sick with Corona and recovered completely, I didn’t have any serious symptoms either.
“The problem is that it caught me in the most wrong place on earth – in China. Here, cases of infection are still treated with the same severity as if 3 years have not passed and nothing has been learned and they advocate complete separation of those exposed to patients. The patients themselves are hospitalized in designated hospitals.
“Nothing helped and I also found myself in such a hospital for 10 days. Nothing prepares you for the experience – not even close engagement with the subject for over two years.
“So how was it?! I found myself in a room between 2 corridors, a kind of aquarium, 2 single beds, 2 automatic doors that open by remote control and a small window-like opening to insert a ‘food’ tray.
“The days pass in anticipation of 2 extremely negative results, with a difference of 24 hours between the tests. Conditions are reminiscent of a prison (just an estimate, I haven’t had that experience yet), 10 of the most delusional days imaginable.
“Not recommended for those suffering from claustrophobia and as a matter of fact, not for anyone!”
Chinese authorities have been operating with a “zero-COVID” policy, one that has increasingly infuriated its mammoth population, resulting in protests last weekend that rocked cities across the country.
This weekend China loosened its restrictions and in several cities some of the controls have been eased, international media reported, in part because the policy isn’t working.
Authorities ended a requirement for commuters to present negative PCR tests results before traveling on public transportation in Shenzhen, Shanghai, Tianjin, Chengdu and Chongqing. However, most restaurants and bars are still closed, and the 48-hour testing requirement is still in place for employees who work in office buildings, according to the Financial Times news outlet.
Chinese officials reported 31,824 infections of the coronavirus in tests performed Saturday, a slight decline from the day before.
Just 40 percent of Chinese citizens ages 80 and up have had the full dosage — three shots — of the country’s Sinopharm and Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine series.