Around 20 officers from a police department – reportedly the counter-terrorism unit – have tested positive for Covid-19.

When asked by a reporter during Friday’s Covid-19 press conference, authorities confirmed that an outbreak had been recorded among officers.

Hong Kong Police
Photo: Candice Chau/HKFP.

“We’ve arranged for them to be isolated and for their family members to undergo quarantine,” said Albert Au, the principal medical and health officer of the Centre for Health Protection, adding that the workplace had already been cleaned throughly.

He did not say which department the officers belonged to, but local media reported that the outbreak involved the police force’s Counter Terrorism Response Unit.

Au added that the the officers had not engaged with members of the public during their duties.

Commissioner of Police Raymond Siu said on Tuesday that the Police Force would reach “total mobilisation” on July 1, which marks the 25 anniversary of the city’s handover to China. Separately, a new counter-terrorism reporting hotline was launched last week.

Hong Kong recorded another 1,145 Covid-19 infections on Friday, 131 of which were imported.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam said at an afternoon press conference that while the daily caseload has been rising, the number of seriously ill patients was low.

“As the number of daily Covid-19 cases crosses the thousand mark, and everybody is very concerned, actually the overall infection has not… caused immense pressure on hospitals,” she said.

Hong Kong has seen three consecutive days of infections in the quadruple digits. The last time authorities recorded over a thousand cases a day was in mid-April, as the fifth wave declined.

As of Friday, the city has recorded over 1.2 million cases and 9,393 related deaths.

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Hillary Leung is a journalist at Hong Kong Free Press, where she reports on local politics and social issues, and assists with editing. Since joining in late 2021, she has covered the Covid-19 pandemic, political court cases including the 47 democrats national security trial, and challenges faced by minority communities.

Born and raised in Hong Kong, Hillary completed her undergraduate degree in journalism and sociology at the University of Hong Kong. She worked at TIME Magazine in 2019, where she wrote about Asia and overnight US news before turning her focus to the protests that began that summer. At Coconuts Hong Kong, she covered general news and wrote features, including about a Black Lives Matter march that drew controversy amid the local pro-democracy movement and two sisters who were born to a domestic worker and lived undocumented for 30 years in Hong Kong.