Demonstrations in China: clashes burst between demonstrators and police in Canton

In mid-November, demonstrators in the Haizhu district had already expressed their anger, overthrowing barriers erected for confinement. Saturday and Sunday, movements against health restrictions took place in several Chinese cities.

mo12345lemonde with AFP

Halls broke out on the night of Tuesday 29 to Wednesday, November 30, between demonstrators and police in Canton, in southern China, according to witnesses and videos on social networks, after several days of uprising in the country against health restrictions.

The images, like those shared by the RFI correspondent in China, show police officers dressed in white combinations white and equipped with transparent riot shields, advancing in tight rows in a street in the Haizhu district, while objects in glass are projected all around them. On the videos, geolocated by the France-Presse agency (AFP), cries are heard and orange and blue barricades are overthrown on the ground.

It reminds of the Roman turtle of Asterix. Police under his plexiglas shield shell in Canton.… Https://

– Stephanelagarde (@Stéphane Lagarde)

People are also seen launching objects on the police and then, on another extract, a dozen individuals, linked hands, seem to be arrested by the police. A canton resident said he saw a hundred police officers converging on the village of Houjiao, which is part of the district of Haizhu, and stop several men on Tuesday evening.

Epicentre of a new home epidemic

The important Chinese security system reacts to the historical events that have occurred this weekend in several cities in the country. The anger had broken out after almost three years of a strict zero covid policy, which involves repeated confinements and almost daily PCR tests of the population.

The trigger for this mobilization, of an unprecedented scale since the pro-democracy demonstrations of 1989, was the fire of a residential building in Urumqi, capital of the Xinjiang region (northwest), who left ten dead. Internet users have accused health restrictions in the city of having prevented the rapid arrival of rescue, an argument swept by the authorities.

The Haizhu district in Canton, where more than 1.8 million people live, is the epicenter of a new home in COVVI-19 cases and has been confined since the end of October. Earlier in November, demonstrators in this district had already expressed their anger, overthrowing the barriers erected for confinement and parading in the streets.

According to videos published Tuesday evening on the Weibo social network, a sort of Chinese twitter, long lines of cars were visible while the inhabitants rushed to leave the neighboring district, Tianhe. Tuesday, Zhang Yi, a spokesperson for the Canton Health Commission, said that “the epidemic in the district of Tianhe Progress [has] quickly and the risk of transmission in the population continues to increase”.

/Media reports cited above.