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Tensions in Canton between police and protesters

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Clashes broke out overnight from Tuesday to Wednesday, November 30, between protesters and police in Guangzhou, southern China, according to witnesses and videos on social media, after several days of uprisings in the country against health restrictions.

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The footage shows policemen, clad in full white and equipped with transparent riot shields, walking in sequential rows down a street in Haizhu district, with glass objects thrown around them.

sequel after announcement

In the AFP geotagged videos, shouts are heard as orange and blue barriers are dropped to the ground. People were also seen throwing things at the police, and then on another excerpt, it appears that the police arrested dozens of individuals, with their hands tied.

A Guangzhou resident, who gave only his last name – Chen – told AFP he saw about 100 police gather in Hujiao village, part of Haizhu district, and stop by the three still alive men on Tuesday evening.

Historical events

The important Chinese security system responded quickly to put an end to the historic demonstrations that took place this weekend in several cities in the country. The anger had erupted after nearly three years of anti-Covid restrictions, which in China involve frequent confinement periods and near-daily PCR tests of the population.

The impetus for this mobilization, on an unprecedented scale since the pro-democracy demonstrations in 1989, was the fire that broke out in an apartment building in Urumqi, the capital of the Xinjiang region (northwest), as a result of which 10 people died.

sequel after announcement

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Netizens have accused the city’s health restrictions of preventing quick access to help, an argument that has been swept up by the authorities. The Hezhou district of Guangzhou, home to more than 1.8 million people, is the epicenter of a new outbreak of Covid-19 cases and has been under lockdown since late October.

Frequent shutdowns

Earlier in November, protesters in this neighborhood had already vented their anger, bringing down containment barricades and marching through the streets. Videos of the protest, posted on social media on November 14 and verified by AFP, showed hundreds of people on the streets of Hezhou, some tearing plastic tape around the homes of those placed in quarantine.

According to videos posted Tuesday night on social network Weibo, China’s equivalent of Twitter, long lines of cars appeared as residents rushed to leave the nearby Tianhe district.

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A spokeswoman for the Canton Health Commission, Zhang Ye, said on Tuesday “The epidemic in Tianhe District is progressing rapidly and the risk of transmission among the population continues to increase.”.

sequel after announcement

A student who was ordered out of the dormitory testified on Weibo: “I thought it would be the best time of my life…but now I get an urgent notification at 1am, I’m shaking and crying in the hallway at 2am, and I see my buddies running away with their bags at 3am. At 4am, I’m sitting alone on my bag, and I I cry, waiting for my parents.

“At five in the morning I finally got into the car and escaped from this place of devouring men. I used to say this land is welcoming, now it’s like hell.”He added, speaking under the pseudonym Ludao Lizi.

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