Chilling moment wall of Chinese ‘stormtroopers’ in hazmat suits block locked-down workers fleeing Chinese iPhone factory
THIS is the chilling moment a wall of Chinese stormtroopers blocked workers fleeing from the world’s largest iPhone factory that has been forced into lockdown.
Footage captured the moment hundreds of escaping employees were met by a wall of officials donning hazmat suits on Tuesday.
Staff at the Foxconn factory in Zhengzhou, which employs 200,000 people, have been trapped in isolation after the city was plunged into strict lockdown under President Xi Jinping’s ‘Zero Covid’ policy.
The plant was first forced into a “closed loop system” after just a handful of Covid cases emerged in the region this month.
But workers claim they have been barred from leaving the manufacturing campus ever since.
The fed-up employees have now decided to make another break for it, amid reports of food shortages, fights and unsanitary conditions.
Haunting footage shared on Twitter showed their latest attempt, as hundreds of employees marched down the empty motorway.
But the crowd’s getaway was obstructed by an eerie wall of China’s Covid enforcement officers sporting white hazmat suits.
The rest of the road was also barricaded by large trucks, leaving the workers with no route.
The short clip then concludes before the swarm of employees reached the picket line.
It comes just days after staff were seen jumping over fences before hauling their belongings up hills alongside the freeway as they made a desperate bid for freedom.
Insiders suggest many have begun lengthy walks back to their hometowns in a bid to avoid being caught on public transport.
Workers have claimed the area surrounding the factory has been locked down, with most staff members being subjected to daily testing to try and contain the spread.
This was despite claims made by the Taiwan-based company Foxconn on Sunday that it would not stop workers from leaving.
Staff – who live on site and sleep in dorms – have described how the factory has descended into “chaos” following the lockdown.
One woman who claimed she helped her 19-year-old brother escape the compound said people have been forced to eat nothing but bread to survive.
Foxconn banned dining at canteens at the Zhengzhou plant with workers forced to eat meals in dormitories.
Those with Covid were being handed basics such as bread and instant noodles – while only production staff have been handed meal boxes, according to reports.
It has inevitably led to exhausted employees brawling over supplies as they remained cooped up inside the cramped dorms.
Some footage shared on Twitter later appeared to show fed-up workers standing at windows shouting while people in hazmat suits can be seen on the ground below.
The factory is now on the verge of collapse – with tech analysts suggesting the situation could lead to a Christmas iPhone shortage.
Factory owner Foxconn has already had to cut production by a third in the run-up to the festive season.
Last year, about a third of £165billion iPhone sales happened between the final quarter of the year, according to Apple.
The tech giant has already warned of shortages this Christmas, with supply chain issues earlier in the year and the rapid sales of the iPhone 14 seemingly to blame.
Foxconn is now desperately trying to shift production to other plants, including one in Shenzhen, in south China.
The Taiwanese firm has also quadrupled bonuses for workers in a desperate bid to get them to stay and calm the situation at the factory.
Beijing is taking a no-tolerance approach to the virus – enforcing the new rules after just 20 to 25 new infections a day this week.
Xi Jinping – who was recently made “Emperor for Life” – is continuing to roll out what has been dubbed as the “world’s strictest lockdown”.
Cops wearing hazmat suits and wielding machine guns have been brutally enforcing the rules.
Quarantine camps, food shortages, cops seizing people’s homes, tags on Covid patients, and drones policing the streets have all been seen across China.
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