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Beijing residents being tested for Covid-19 at a mass testing site.

Beijing plans to test two million people in 48 hours as the city rushes to stop a new local cluster of COVID cases.

It's the second day of their drive to stop a local cluster of coronavirus cases believed to be linked to a more contagious variant.

The mass testing campaign is now under way in the Dongcheng and Xicheng districts, with Beijing reporting 19 new coronavirus cases in the past week.

Lockdowns, meanwhile, have also been imposed in parts of Beijing.

After the virus first emerged in Wuhan in December 2019, China locked down the city and since March 2020, has had very few cases.

Chinese authorities have reported a total of more than 88,000 cases total since the beginning of the pandemic and 4,600 deaths.

Globally, 2.1 million people have died due to coronavirus, although the true death toll is likely much higher.