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2 Nov 2022

Matthew Loh, Insider (USA)

China: Foxconn denies Covid deaths in iPhone factory dormitory and claims social media footage 'maliciously edited'

"iPhone maker Foxconn has hit back at 'maliciously edited' videos of worker deaths at its facility following a COVID outbreak, after clarifying there have been no casualties" 2 November 2022

  • Foxconn denied claims on social media that some of its workers died from COVID in their dormitory.
  • Unverified videos circulating online claimed that eight workers died in one dormitory room.
  • Foxconn called the footage "maliciously edited," and said no workers had died at its facility.

Apple's biggest iPhone maker, Foxconn, has denied claims from videos circulating on social media that some of its workers died from COVID-19 at its plant in Zhengzhou, China.

"Following a detailed investigation into the online video footage alleging 'deaths at room 726,' Hon Hai Technology Group (Foxconn) solemnly clarifies there are no deaths at our facility," the company said in a statement to Insider.

Foxconn added in its statement that it believed the footage was "maliciously edited."

The videos, seen by Insider, claim to show workers shouting and protesting confinement in their dormitories, with captions alleging that eight employees died in their shared dormitory room. Foxconn's Zhengzhou facility employs around 200,000 workers — many of whom are from rural villages and towns — and operates dormitories to house them.

Some of the clips appear to show staff in white protective suits standing in a courtyard surrounded by residential blocks, while wails and yells can be heard.

A compilation of the clips was tweeted by a Chinese dissident, Bloomberg first reported. The video has accrued more than 500,000 views. 

Insider was unable to independently verify the veracity of the videos.

Foxconn's Zhengzhou factory recently drew widespread attention on Chinese social media, after videos emerged of its workers climbing fences and walking back to their hometowns to escape prison-like COVID-19 measures at the plant. Insider could not independently verify the authenticity of the videos.

After the videos went viral, Foxconn announced on Sunday that it would arrange vehicle transport for workers who wanted to return home. [...]