The Chinese Embassy in Moscow has issued a warning after some of its citizens forged negative coronavirus test results to fly back home from Russia, the South China Morning Post reported Tuesday.
Russia temporarily banned Chinese nationals from entry in February in an effort to prevent the Covid-19 outbreak which originated in China from spreading. As Russia’s caseload surged in April, China tightened security at its border with Russia to prevent a second coronavirus wave from being imported.
China’s embassy criticized passengers who forge negative Covid-19 test results for causing “great harm” to others and undermining China’s work to fight its outbreak, SCMP cited the embassy’s account on the social media app WeChat as saying.
An investigation will “bear corresponding legal responsibilities” for those who made the counterfeit test reports, the Chinese embassy reportedly wrote Monday.
The embassy was reported to have issued an almost identical warning on May 29.
China requires returnees to take nucleic acid test results within five days of flying from Russia to China.
The Chinese Embassy in Moscow did not identify how many Chinese passengers had counterfeit test reports or the cities where they had departed from and landed in. It was also unclear if the passengers’ tests were actually positive.
Russia began registering its first coronavirus cases in early March and has since confirmed almost 607,000 infections, the third-most on the planet. China, where the virus originated in December, is outside the top 20 with 83,430 cases.
Russia enjoys strong political and military ties with China and has repeatedly defended its neighbor amid U.S. criticism of its handling of the pandemic.