China has fewest virus cases in 5 months

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China has reported the fewest number of new COVID-19 cases in more than five months after a combination of robust countermeasures helped stamp out a new wave of the disease in the northeast that emerged last month.

A total of two new cases were reported on February 10, the National Health Commission said on Thursday, down from 14 a day earlier and matching the total reported on September 8. Both of the new infections were imported cases from overseas.

China saw a resurgence of the disease in January, when a new cluster emerged in Hebei province that surrounds Beijing and later took hold in northeastern Heilongjiang and Jilin provinces.

Authorities in these provinces introduced lockdowns, travel curbs and mass testing in a bid to contain the disease.

Though the latest wave appears to have subsided, travel volumes during the Lunar New Year break that began on Thursday are expected to be down significantly as authorities encouraged people to stay put amid heightened caution about the disease.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in mainland China to date stands at 89,736, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4636.