After lifting the ban on leaving the country for more than two months due to the coronavirus pandemic, thousands of people want to leave the city of Wuhan in central China. Crowds flocked to Wuchang train station this morning (local time), as reporters from the AFP news agency observed. Tens of thousands of residents are expected to leave the city by train during the day.
„Wuhan deserves to be called the City of Heroes. The people of Wuhan deserve to be called heroes, ”the station speakers echoed. The travel ban for the residents of the city had been lifted today (local time, 6:00 p.m. CEST).
The government estimates that 55,000 people will leave the city later today. Flights to Wuhan International Airport are also expected to resume, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency.
Completely cordoned off since January 23
The world’s first cases of infection with the novel corona virus were reported from the industrial metropolis at the end of December. The capital of the province of Hubei was the first Chinese city to be completely closed off on January 23 due to the spread of the pathogen; later almost the entire province followed.
The situation has since eased and since the end of March the Chinese authorities have gradually stopped the foreclosure measures. For Wuhan, however, an exit ban continued to apply initially.