Dog is killed by anti-Covid sanitary agents in China and sparks revolt

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A series of noises startled the sleeping corgi out of his bed. The door opens and two fully clothed people enter the room, one carrying an iron bar and the other carrying a yellow bag.

“Did the boss say we need to sort this out right here?” one of them asks. “Yes”, says the other, then moves the table where the dog is hiding and hit him in the head with the iron bar. The dog moans and runs away from the camera to another room.

The disturbing scene, captured by a security camera and shared on networks by the dog’s owner, shows the last moments before the pet was killed in her home by Covid prevention workers in the Chinese city of Shangrao, in the southeastern province of China. Jiangxi, on Friday (12), while the owner of the corgi was in mandatory quarantine at a nearby hotel.

The dog’s death, which sparked a massive uproar on Chinese social media this weekend, is the latest example of the extreme measures taken by local authorities in China to achieve Covid zero policy.

China’s local authorities are under intense pressure to ease infections as the Delta variant continues to spread across the country. To date, more than 1300 cases have been reported in about two-thirds of the country’s provinces.

In May to shock and anger, the dog’s death heated debates over animal rights, as well as reflections on the extent to which unlimited Chinese power can expand to individual rights during the pandemic.

Or case

The residential community where the dog lived is under lockdown due to confirmed cases of Covid-19. All residents were forced into government quarantine on Friday, and were not allowed to bring their pets, said the dog’s owner on Weibo, the Chinese platform similar to Twitter.

The owner, whose last name is Fu and so far tested negative for the virus, said community workers had repeatedly reassured her, before she left for quarantine on Friday morning, that they would not take or kill the dog during disinfection. of building.

But in the afternoon, Covid’s prevention workers had broken into her apartment to beat the dog, she said.

“My dog ​​ran off to the other four, so the moment wasn’t recorded by the security cameras, but I could hear their whining. A few minutes later, they claimed they had dealt with the situation and would take him away, holding a yellow bag in their hands,” Fu wrote in a recently deleted publication. “So far I don’t know if my dog ​​is dead or alive, and where he was taken,” he added.

In a statement released on Saturday, the Xinzhou District Government, where the residential complex is located, confirmed that the dog was killed as part of the need to “completely disinfect” the community’s homes.

The government admitted that the workers “handled safely” the dog without informing the owner about it. The officials involved were reprimanded and removed from their positions, the government said, adding that they apologized to the owner and obtained her understanding.

On Weibo, however, the owner said she was pressured by local authorities and her employer to delete her posts. THE CNN contacted the owner, who was not named by the government, and Jiangxi Province for comments.

It’s not the first time Chinese authorities have killed pets as part of their rigorous response to Covid. In September, three cats in the city of Harbin were killed without their owner’s consent after testing positive for the virus. The owner was in hospital quarantine after contracting Covid-19.

However, not all local governments are as strict when it comes to dealing with pets. In January, Shanghai authorities were widely praised for allowing residents to take their pets into quarantine with them.

Animals in different countries have contracted Covid-19, including pets, zoo animals and livestock, with humans being the main source of these infections.

But while scientists say Covid-19 probably originated in animals before it spread to humans, there is no evidence that animals are playing a significant role in spreading the virus to people, according to the Center for US Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

And, in the last incident, the dog was killed even before being tested for Covid-19, according to the owner.

“When they hadn’t even confirmed whether the dog was negative or positive (for Covid), they broke into the owner’s house and beat the dog to death. This is the level of government management,” said a comment on Weibo.

In its statement, the district government said residents had been asked not to lock their doors before leaving for quarantine, and Covid’s prevention workers forcibly opened the owner’s door, under the supervision of police officers.

The measure has provoked a strong reaction from pet owners and pet supporters, while others see it as a necessary sacrifice for the “greater good” of society, arguing that human lives are more important than animals.

But for some, there is another crucial question to ask: How much more power has the government amassed, in the name of prevention to Covid, at the expense of individual rights and freedoms?

“From the previous killing of the three cats to this dog, it’s gotten worse and worse. The so-called debate over ‘animal rights’ is merely camouflage – the central issue here has always been the irresponsible violation of individual rights by the infinitely increasing power of the state,” said a comment on Chinese social network Douban.

*This article has been translated. Read the original in English

Reference: CNN Brasil

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