Hugs and tears as China marks first Lunar New Year since lockdowns ended

As China on Sunday welcomes the Lunar New Year, many families are reuniting over the holidays for the first time since the Covid-19 crisis erupted. Following tough “Zero Covid” closures, China’s borders have been reopened this year, bringing festive cheer and a few emotional tears at border crossings.

The trains are back up and running again, connecting mainland China to Hong Kong for the first time since borders were sealed under Beijing’s “Zero Covid” policy.

Tens of thousands of families have been waiting for this moment.

“It’s very long already…since 2020…January. It was very hard during this time,” sobbed a Hong Kong resident as she waited for her elderly mother to arrive from mainland China.

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