Tokyo has asked Beijing to stop performing COVID-19 anal swabs on its citizens after complaints that the procedure causes “psychological pain.”
“Some Japanese reported to our embassy in China that they received anal swab tests, which caused a great psychological pain,” said Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato.
China introduced the anal swab tests is several cities back in January, claiming that they are a more efficient and accurate way of detecting COVID-19.
Last week, China denied that it had forced U.S. diplomats to undergo the anal swab procedure, with China’s foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian telling a press conference that “China has never required US diplomatic staff stationed in China to conduct anal swab tests.”
However, workers told the U.S. State Department that they had been given the test, which involves inserting a cotton swab 3-5cm into the anus and gently rotating it to collect a sample.
Much of China’s draconian response to the coronavirus pandemic, which included at one point welding people inside their own homes, has been praised by western media outlets.
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