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China scrubs starvation reports during Xinjiang virus lockdown

Beijing removes online posts about people eating foliage, lack of medical care

Residents stand next to a cordoned-off fruit stall in Urumqi, capital of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.   © Reuters

HONG KONG -- China's censors are scrubbing online claims about starvation and lack of medical care during a virus lockdown in its Xinjiang region, where Beijing already stands accused of committing rights abuses.

Under its strict zero-COVID policy, China has been shutting down cities and regions to quash outbreaks, including a two-month lockdown of Shanghai's 25 million residents earlier this year. It has yet to officially confirm the curbs in far-western Xinjiang, home to mostly Muslim minority groups.

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