Representational image by Sasha India on Flickr via Wikimedia Commons
Beijing: Police in the Xinjiang region of China have arrested four internet users and accused them of spreading rumours about an outbreak of Covid-19.
The four were ordered to serve between five and 10 days of administrative detention in Yining, a city in the Ili Kazakh autonomous prefecture, police said in a statement on Sunday, reports The South China Morning Post.
“[The detainees] spread rumours on the internet, incited antagonistic sentiments, disrupted the order of anti-pandemic measures, [which] resulted in negative social repercussions,” police said.
The statement did not disclose the ethnicity of the four individuals but they all had Han surnames.
Administrative detention is usually ordered for minor offences and does not involve formal charges or a trial. It requires only police approval but the duration is capped at 14 days.
China has been battling to control the COVID-19 outbreak.