After almost three years of closure due to coronavirus restrictions, Hong Kong's high-speed railway line to mainland China has finally reopened.
The move is part of China's dismantling of its zero-Covid policy. Trains don't run all the way to Beijing, but for many passengers, it's nonetheless a welcome step.
A large exit wave, sparked by the dumping of many restrictions seems to be weakening, with infection numbers falling, according to a health commission official.
China has reported 59,938 COVID-related deaths in Chinese hospitals between 8 December 2022 and 12 January 2023.
However, these numbers are considered an underestimate by many, due to restrictive case criteria compared with other countries along with only counting deaths occurring in hospitals.
So far surges have been mainly in the big cities of China, but as the country gears up for its New Year celebrations, there are fears that holidaymakers could spread the virus into more rural areas.
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