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China's 'iPhone city' tightens Covid rules after violent protests

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tech.hindustantimes.com

China has ordered six million people into lockdown in a city where violent protests broke out at an iPhone factory over Covid isolation policies and working conditions.Hundreds of workers took to the streets around the vast iPhone factory in Zhengzhou on Wednesday, confronting hazmat-clad personnel wielding batons in a rare display of public anger in China.In the wake of the unrest, Zhengzhou authorities ordered mass testing and an effective lockdown for several districts in the central Chinese city starting Friday.City centre residents cannot leave the area unless they have a negative Covid test and permission from local authorities, and are advised not to leave their homes "unless necessary".The restrictions will affect more than six million people but do not cover the iPhone factory, where workers have already been under Covid restrictions for weeks.One worker told AFP the protests had begun over a dispute over promised bonuses at the factory, run by Taiwanese tech giant Foxconn.Many workers were also incensed by "chaotic" living conditions, said the worker, who wished to remain anonymous.Foxconn on Thursday issued an apology, blaming a "technical error" in its payment systems for the salary issues and saying it "fully understands" the concerns of employees."The company will also try its best to actively solve the concerns and reasonable demands of employees," it said.Apple told AFP it had representatives on the ground at the factory and was "reviewing the situation and working closely with Foxconn to ensure their employees' concerns are addressed".- Zero-Covid fatigue -The curbs in Zhengzhou are part of China's national zero-tolerance approach to Covid, which involves gruelling lockdowns, travel restrictions and mass

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