China to lift lockdown in most of virus-hit Hubei province

In this March 23, 2020 photo released by Xinhua News Agency, workers disinfect a subway train in preparation for the restoration of public transport in Wuhan, in central China's Hubei province. China's health ministry says Wuhan has now gone several consecutive days without a new infection, showing the effectiveness of draconian travel restrictions that are slowly being relaxed around the country. (Xiao Yijiu/Xinhua via AP)
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BEIJING (AP) Chinese authorities are lifting a lockdown in most of its virus-hit Hubei province.

People who are cleared will be able to leave the province after midnight Tuesday.

The city of Wuhan, where the outbreak started, will remain locked down until April 8. China barred people from leaving or entering Wuhan starting Jan. 23 and expanded it to most of the province in succeeding days.

The drastic steps came as a new coronavirus began spreading to the rest of China and overseas during the Lunar New Year, when many Chinese travel.

Hubei has seen almost no new infections for more than a week.