“I’ll never come back” … Escape rush after Shanghai lockdown is lifted

◀ anchor ▶

In Shanghai, China, the coronavirus lockdown, which has lasted more than 50 days, is gradually easing.

The Chinese authorities predicted that normal life would be possible from next month, and the city of Shanghai made a promotional video saying, ‘The familiar Shanghai is returning.’

The reality of Shanghai right now is a train station bustling with escape queues.

Correspondent Jo Hee-hyeong from Beijing delivers.

◀ Report ▶

Cars are running again on the empty road.

At the Bund, a famous landmark in Shanghai, medical staff who take off their protective suits smile brightly and wave their hands.

Citizens tell quarantine workers that they suffered.

[상하이 시민]
“You worked hard. You came from such a distance…”

This is a propaganda video released by the city of Shanghai, which announced that the lockdown will be lifted from next month.

It also contains the pride that it was possible to recover from daily life because of the achievement of sticking to the zero-corona policy.

[상하이 선전 영상]
“The familiar Shanghai awaits your return.”

But the reality was different.

The bustling Shanghai Railway Station.

As soon as the partial lockdown easing began, the Shanghai escape procession began immediately.

Although public transport has not yet been normalized, some people came by bicycle or on foot with a suitcase in one hand.

[열차 대기 중인 시민]
“I’m going home somehow. I haven’t seen any hope here for two months.”

In particular, university students who came to Shanghai to study abroad or to find work. The workers were fed up after nearly two months of imprisonment, saying they would never come back.

[열차 대기 중인 시민]
“Don’t say anything. I won’t be back.”

Last month, when the Shanghai lockdown began in earnest, search terms for ‘immigration’ surged 400 times on social media in China compared to the previous month, and there was also a report that the number of inquiries to immigration and study abroad companies was pouring in to the extent that they could not find work.

The Chinese government recently announced that it would restrict the departure of its citizens unless absolutely necessary.

This is Jo Hee-hyeong from MBC News in Beijing.

Video coverage: Farewell (Beijing) / Video editing: Min Kyung-tae

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