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Shanghai is tentatively unraveling a punishing lockdown that confined millions of people to their homes for weeks amid signs that its outbreak is coming under control, even as flareups in distant cities show how China is locked in a seemingly endless battle to ward off the hyper-infectious omicron variant.

The Chinese financial hub reported a third consecutive day of no new COVID-19 cases in the broader community, hitting a crucial milestone that authorities have said will allow them to unwind the strict curbs that hampered economic activity and curtailed almost every aspect of daily life for residents. All 16 of the city’s districts reported no community spread, officials said at a briefing today.

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