China announces 1st COVID-19 death in almost 6 months

BEIJING (AP) — China has announced its first new death from COVID-19 in nearly half a year. Strict new measures are being imposed in Beijing and across the country. The death of the 87-year-old Beijing man was the first reported by the National Health Commission since May 26, bringing the total death toll to 5,227. China has faced hurdles vaccinating its elderly population although the commission did not give details on the man’s status in its report Sunday. That vulnerability is considered one reason why China has mostly kept its borders closed and is sticking with its rigid “zero-COVID” policy despite the impact on daily life and the economy. The policy seeks to wipe out infections through lockdowns, quarantines, case tracing and mass testing.