Students in China protest zero Covid policy

CHINA – Anger among students after workers. Protests against excessive incarceration began this Sunday, November 27, in Shanghai, universities in Beijing and other cities where anger against China’s brutal policies has grown. “zero covid” it has been applied by the country’s authorities for nearly three years.

whom you can see it in our video at the top of the articleAccording to AFP and footage posted on social media, 200-300 students from the prestigious Tsinghua University in Beijing demonstrated on their campus this Sunday.

The witness reported that at around 11:30 a.m., one student started waving a white paper and was joined by other women. “We sang the national anthem and the Internationale and chanted slogans: “freedom will triumph”, “we want food, not PCR tests”, “we want freedom, not prison””this witness said again.

“This is not a normal life”

Online videos show a crowd gathering around the speaker outside a university cafeteria: “This is not a normal life, we have lived enough. Our life was not like this before! » Another video taken from the same location shows students shouting: “Democracy and rule of law, freedom of expression”but it was quickly removed from the internet.

In the neighboring Tsinghua University, Peking University also held a banquet in memory of the victims of the Urumqi fire. According to the participating student, the protesters started gathering on the campus around midnight on Saturday and the crowd reached 100-200 people.

“I heard people shouting: ‘No to Covid tests, yes to freedom'”, he said, showing photos and videos confirming AFP’s statements. Videos on social media also showed small gatherings at the Institute of Communications in Nanjing (east), as well as in Xian, Wuhan (center) and Guangzhou (south), but the authenticity of the footage could not be verified by AFP. . Hashtags related to the protests have been censored on the Weibo platform, and sensitive videos have been removed from the Duoyin and Kuaishou sharing sites.

Another protest was held in Shanghai on Saturday. The video, which went viral on the internet and was geotagged by AFP, shows people screaming “Xi Jinping, resign! » and also attacking the Chinese Communist Party, a rare display of hostility toward the president and regime in the country’s economic capital, which suffered a grueling two-month arrest earlier in the year.

The tragedy of many

The first protest took place on Wulumuqi Street, the mandarin name of Urumqi in Xinjiang (west) on Sunday morning, and ten people died in a fire on Thursday. Many social media posts in China have accused the anti-Covid measures of exacerbating the tragedy, with many cars parked in a narrow alleyway leading to the burning building, preventing help from arriving. .

A person who attended the first demonstration in Shanghai on Sunday told AFP on condition of anonymity that he arrived around 2am. “One group of mourners laid flowers on the sidewalk, another group chanted slogans”this witness said.

“There were a few minor incidents, but overall the police were civil.”he continued. “It’s crazy to know that there are so many brave people who still stand out under these circumstances”, he shouted. Several witnesses said at least two people were taken away by security forces.

Fatigue and satiety in the face of acute measures

Sporadic and sometimes violent protests have been held across the country in recent days, including at the world’s largest iPhone factory in central Zhengzhou, as well as in Urumqi following the fire.

Although there are few vaccines available, and unlike the rest of the world, China continues to impose mass arrests at the slightest sighting, quarantine those who test positive in centers and require PCR tests – daily newspapers for access to public places.

After almost three years of severe restrictions, the fatigue is overwhelming. A series of high-profile cases where emergency services have been slowed by health restrictions and led to deaths have fueled public outrage.

China reported 39,506 Covid cases on Sunday, a daily record compared to figures elsewhere in the world at the peak of the pandemic.

See also The HuffPost:

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