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The Sunday Review
For the For the first time in many decades, thousands of people You can find it here defied Chinese authorities Protest at universities and other public places the Streets of Major cities are demanding to be released not only from incessant Covid tests and lockdownsHowever, strict censorship is required the Communist Party’s tightening grip over all aspects of life.
Across the country, “want freedom” It has become a rallying cry cry for a groundswell of protests Majority of the work is done by the younger generation, some too young To have participated in past acts of open dissent against the government.
“Give me liberty or give me death!” Crowds at the According to video clips circulating online, hundreds shouted in many cities As vigils to mark the deaths of At least 10 people In a fire in Xinjiang It spiraled into political rallies.
Videos circulating online seem to suggest China’s strict zero-Covid policy initially prevented emergency workers from accessing the scene that angers residents all across the country the Country that has endured three years of There are many Covid controls.
Some protestors sang for Democracy and free speech the rule of law, human right and other political demands from cities the Financial hub in the eastern region of Shanghai the capital Beijing, the South metropolis of Guangzhou and Chengdu the west.
The Sunday Review has been verified protests With reports from 16 locations of Others were held in dozens of Other cities and universities around the globe the country.
Protesters demonstrate in Hong Kong to support mainland.
While protests In several parts of China They appear to have dispersed peacefully. the weekend, some met a stronger response from authorities – and security has been tightened across cities in a country were authorities have far-reaching surveillance and security capabilities.
A heavy police presence was evident in Beijing on Monday evening, one day after the incident. protests There was no escape. Many police vehicles were parked in the dark, flashing their lights, and lined the streets of this part. of the capital, including near Liangmaqiao in the city’s central Chaoyang district, where a large crowd of Protesters gathered on Sunday night.
Monday, when asked whether “the widespread display of anger and frustration” It can be seen all over the Country could prompt China Foreign Ministry spokesperson dismissed suggestions of a shift away from the zero-Covid model. of dissent.
“What you mentioned does not reflect what actually happened,” Zhao Lijian, spokesperson for the Chinese government, stated that authorities were in place. “making adjustments” Their Covid policies are based upon “realities on the ground.”
“We believe that with the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese people our fight against Covid-19 will be successful,” He stated.
In a symbolic demonstration against ever-tightening censorship, young demonstrators across China Holded up sheets of white paper – a metaphor for the Many critical posts, news articles, outspoken social-media accounts were deleted the internet.
“I think in a just society, no one should be criminalized for their speech. There shouldn’t be only one voice in our society – we need a variety of voices,” A Beijing protester spoke out to The Sunday Review the Early hours of Monday as he marched downward the city’s Third Ring Road with a thin pile of A4 white paper.
“I hope in the future, I will no longer be holding a white piece of paper for what I really want to express,” the The Sunday Review does not name protester due to fears about repercussions for Speak up
Monday was Monday for the United Nations. It urged Chinese authorities not to give up on their promise of security. people’s “right to demonstrate peacefully,” Stephane Dujarric, Secretary General spokesperson, said during a daily briefing.
Britain’s Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said China’s ruling Communist Party should “take notice” of the protests.
“Protests against the Chinese government are rare. And so when they do happen, I think it’s worth us taking note, but more importantly, I think it’s incumbent on the Chinese government to take notice of its own people,” Cleverly explained to reporters
All the Weekend, censors quickly moved to remove videos and photos of the protests Starting at the Chinese internet though the startling images made headlines worldwide.
In online commentaries, Chinese state media made no mention of the protestsInstead, focus on the Strengthen of Beijing’s anti-Covid policies, emphasizing they were both “scientific and effective.”
However, many protesters are not satisfied. the demonstrations are about much more than Covid – they’re bringing together many liberal-minded young people People who try to speak out online might be blocked by strict onlinecensorship.
In their 20s, a Shanghai resident took part in the the candlelight vigil in the Early hours of Sunday stated that they were welcomed by others young people Holding white papers, flowers, and shouting “want freedom” As they walked towards each other the Memorial made from scraps.
“My friends and I have all experienced Shanghai’s lockdown, and the so-called ‘iron fist’ (of the state) has fallen on all of us,” They spoke to The Sunday Review. “That night, I felt that I could finally do something. I couldn’t sit still, I had to go.”
They were silently in tears. the Crowd the chants demanding freedom The sound grew more louder.
“At that moment, I felt I’m not alone,” They agreed. “I realized that I’m not the only one who thinks this way.”
In certain cases, the protests They have been openly called out and speak in a defiant tone. for Political change.
During the The first night of the Demonstrations in Shanghai, where a crowd shouted “Step down, Xi Jinping! Step down, Communist Party!” Direct challenge, unprecedented in its nature the The top leader. Some protestors chanted again on Sunday night for the Removal of Xi.
In Chengdu, the Although protestors did not identify Xi, their message was difficult to miss. “Opposition to dictatorship!” chanted hundreds of people Packing the Video and a participant captured bustling river banks in a busy food and shopping district on Sunday night.
“We don’t want lifelong rulers. We don’t want emperors!” They shouted in a barely veiled reference. the Last month, China’s top leader began a new norm-breaking third term.
According to the participant, the Also, protestors were heard from the crowd against Revisions the Party charter the state constitution – which enabled Xi to further cement his hold on power and scrap presidential term limits.
Similar to Shanghai. the As a small candlelight vigil, the gathering began. for people In the Fire in Urumqi Thursday
There’s more! people gathered, the Vigil became a more loud platform to voice political grievances.
“Everyone started shouting these slogans very naturally,” the Participant said. “It is so rare that we have such a large-scale gathering and demonstration. The words of mourning didn’t feel enough, and we had to shout out some words that we want to say.”
She is my hero the Experience of Insuffocating censorship only fuels the desire for “institutional and spiritual freedom,” And mourning the Victims and demanding democracy freedom Two “inseparable” things.
“We all know that the reason why we have to keep undergoing lockdowns and Covid tests is that this is a political movement, not a scientific and logical response of epidemic prevention,” She said. “That’s why we have more political demands other than lifting lockdowns.”
Chengdu protester claimed she felt encouraged the wave of demonstrations sweeping the country.
“It turns out there are so many people who are wide awake,” She said. “I feel like I can see a glimmer of light coming through ahead.”