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Beijing: A southeastern Chinese province has reported 22 more COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to 43 in a fresh outbreak driven by the highly transmissible delta variant.

Health authorities said Monday that 15 cases were confirmed in Putian city in the latest 24-hour period. Another six were found in Quanzhou city, and one more in Xiamen, suggesting the virus may be moving south from Putian.

All the infections are in Fujian province, which is across from Taiwan on China's east coast.

Schools have been closed in Putian and anyone leaving the city must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test in the previous 48 hours. The city suspended bus and train service on Saturday and has closed cinemas, bars and other facilities.

China has largely stopped the spread of COVID-19 but has sporadic outbreaks. One outbreak driven by the delta variant spread to multiple provinces in July and August, raising concern about new and more contagious variants.



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