Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Riots erupt in China over migrant abuse

Residents look on as riot police patrol the southern Chinese city of Zengcheng, where violent protests had erupted over the rough treatment of a migrant street vendor.

Source: Press TV

A wave of unrest has swept the southern manufacturing hub of Guangzhou in China, where angry migrant workers have clashed with riot police over core economic and political issues.

Violent protests erupted in the town of Zengchang, after police allegedly abused a pregnant migrant street vendor, Reuters said.

The 20-year-old woman was reportedly pushed to the ground as police tried to clear the area.

The incident led to a three-day standoff that began on Saturday.

Over 1,000 demonstrators were involved in the riots, attacking police officers and burning dozens of cars and buses.

At least one government building was also besieged during the turmoil.

Calm was finally restored in the city on Tuesday after a massive security contingent was deployed to control the public outrage, as tear gas canisters were fired to disperse crowds.

The number of casualties is not yet clear.

Trivial incidents frequently trigger unrest in China. Critics believe these scuffles are symbols of larger economic, ethnic and political problems within China that usually pits ordinary people against the state.

Last year China experienced 280,000 of these so-called “mass incidents” - including petitions, demonstrations and strikes - both peaceful and violent.

This marks a steep rise from 87,000 incidents reported in 2005.

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