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Published: 17:43, June 23, 2022 | Updated: 18:04, June 23, 2022
Macao extends virus shutdown of city, casinos stay open
By Wang Zhan
Published:17:43, June 23, 2022 Updated:18:04, June 23, 2022 By Wang Zhan

A medical worker takes a swab sample from a resident for COVID-19 nucleic acid testing in Macao, south China, Aug 4, 2021. (CHEONG KAM KA / XINHUA)

HONG KONG - Macao extended its COVID-19 restrictions including the closure of bars, cinemas, hair salons and outdoor parks from Thursday, the special administrative region's chief executive said it has battles to curb a rise in locally transmitted cases.

READ MORE: Citywide testing in Macao after new COVID-19 case detected

Casinos are allowed to remain open while theaters, fitness centers, and leisure facilities must halt operations from 5 pm local time on Thursday, Ho Iat-seng said in a statement on the government's website.

Only takeaway is allowed from dining facilities.

Macao's more than 600,000 residents were required to undergo a second round of mass testing this week, as the number of infected people jumped to more than 100 cases

Macao's more than 600,000 residents were required to undergo a second round of mass testing this week, as the number of infected people jumped to more than 100 cases.

Positive cases include those working or visiting the casinos with a number of them related to a wedding banquet that was held inside SJM Holding's Grand Lisboa Palace.

A hotel and casino resort on Macao' main peninsula was locked down by authorities on Tuesday due to a coronavirus infection, with some 700 people undergoing quarantine. 

ALSO READ: Macao logs 1st imported virus case of Omicron variant

Macao's previous coronavirus outbreak was in October last year. Macao's cases are still far below daily infections in places including neighboring Hong Kong where infections have jumped to over 1,000 in recent days.

The city adheres to the "zero COVID" policy that aims to eradicate all outbreaks to ensure the safety of its residents. 

The territory's swift plan to test its entire population comes as it keeps open the border with the Chinese mainland, with many residents living and working in next-door mainland city Zhuhai.

With Agencies' inputs

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