Officials in the northwestern Chinese city of Xian face penalties after the coronavirus outbreak led to the containment of its 13 million residents, Chinese authorities said on Friday.
The Central Discipline Inspection Commission said in a statement that 26 people in Xian were held responsible for mismanaging the health crisis, but did not specify the type of penalties incurred.
All domestic flights from Xian and most trains from the city scheduled for Friday have been canceled. Authorities in Xian, a site famous for its terracotta army buried with China’s first emperor, say the epidemic peak is linked to the arrival of a plane from Pakistan.
On December 23, the number of new locally transmitted cases in the city fell to 49, from 63 the day before, the first decline since December 10.
As of Thursday, only one person per household has the right to make essential purchases in Xian, and every other day, while the others can only go out if their work is considered essential.
Xian has massively tested its inhabitants several times.
Although the number of symptomatic cases of COVID-19 in the city and throughout China is small compared to the number of infections recorded elsewhere, Chinese authorities have taken strict measures that have, for the most part, helped prevent local spread of the virus.
China is particularly determined to stave off the epidemic as Beijing prepares to host the Winter Olympics in February.