İrem UZUN -TDO- Officials in China's sprawling capital have been told to maintain a "wartime" footing as new coronavirus cases stoke fears of a possible second wave of COVID-19 in the country where it all started. Beijing's municipal government reported two new coronavirus cases on Friday, a day after they confirmed the city's first new infection after 56 days without a single local transmission.
The two cases reported Friday are from Beijing's Fengtai District, a different part of the capital from where the single case was announced on Thursday. The two newest patients are coworkers at the same unit of a food research center that works with meat. Both men told authorities they'd had no recent contact with anyone from overseas or from the epicenter of China's epidemic, the city of Wuhan in Hubei province. One patient visited China's eastern city of Qingdao on a five-day business trip within the past two weeks, but the source their infections, along with the case reported on Thursday, remained unclear. According to local media outlet Beijing News, owned by the government, a meat market in the area, the Xinfadi wholesale market, was shut down for testing and disinfection after it was determined that both the patient confirmed on Thursday and one of the cases announced on Friday had visited recently.
In response to the new cases, officials brought restrictions on movement, tourism and sporting events back across the city. Beijing authorities said more than 10,000 people at the market will take nucleic acid tests to detect coronavirus infections. The city government also said it had dropped plans to reopen schools on Monday for students in grades one through three because of the new cases.