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China's stagnant economy triggers zero-COVID rollback

But easing does not rule out return of epidemic curbs

A woman in Beijing pulls up her face shield for a COVID test on Dec. 7. China announced an easing of the country's zero-COVID curbs that day.   © AP

BEIJING -- Chinese officials relented on the country's long-standing zero-COVID measures over concern about the severe economic damage caused by the strict curbs against movement.

The government announced Wednesday a series of changes that ease the zero-COVID policy, including that individuals no longer need to provide a negative COVID test to travel around the country.

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