A national period of mourning was held on April 4, this year's Tomb Sweeping Day, to commemorate those who had succumbed to COVID-19.
To express profound condolences to martyrs who sacrificed their lives in fighting the novel coronavirus disease and compatriots who died of the pathogen, national flags were lowered to half-mast across the country and at Chinese embassies on the day. Public recreational activities were suspended nationwide.
Starting at 10 am, people across the country observed three minutes of silence. Sirens of automobiles, trains and ships sounded. Air defense warnings went off.
In Hubei province, 14 people who lost their lives in front-line combat against the virus had been honored as martyrs, the provincial government announced on April 2.
Twelve front-line medical workers infected at their posts, a police officer and a community official comprise the group of martyrs, the highest honorary title in the country for those who bravely sacrifice their lives for the nation and society.
A national mourning period is not often seen in the country. Only a few such mourning activities have been held since the turn of the new millennium, including one for the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake in Sichuan province, which claimed over 69,000 lives and left another 18,000 missing.
The epidemic has killed 3,322 people on the Chinese mainland as of late Thursday (April 2), according to the National Health Commission.