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Hong Kong denied plans to harvest residents’ DNA as part of a China-backed coronavirus-testing blitz, as deep political mistrust further complicates the city’s efforts to contain its worst outbreak ever.

The Hong Kong government Sunday welcomed Chinese government experts who are setting up a temporary laboratory to dramatically expand its ability to track a third wave of COVID-19 cases. The push quickly fanned suspicions that authorities would use the opportunity to collect DNA samples from residents, a tactic local law enforcement have recently employed in activist arrests, after widespread use by police in Xinjiang and elsewhere on the mainland.

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