Chinese bank customers left clueless as to why as three local banks froze deposits.
If there were any doubts that e-controlling populations based on public health matter was an evil idea, China has now dispelled them completely.
A protest planned by hundreds of bank depositors in central China seeking access to their frozen funds has been thwarted because the authorities have turned their health code apps red, several depositors told Reuters.
The depositors were planning to travel to the central province of Henan this week from across China to protest against an almost two-month block on accessing at least $178 million of deposits, which has left companies unable to pay workers and individuals unable to access savings. read more
Rights groups have warned China could use its vast COVID surveillance infrastructure to stifle dissent. Without a green code on their smartphone app, citizens lose access to public transport and spaces such as restaurants and malls, as well as the right to travel across the country.
“They are putting digital handcuffs on us,” said a depositor from Sichuan province surnamed Chen, who declined to use his full name for fear of government retribution.
The "conspiracy theorists" warned that COVID QR codes would be used as a means for surveillance and censorship.
Today, the CCP blocked a protest by switching citizens' QR codes to prevent freedom of movement.https://t.co/XzUheAumQA
— Jordan Schachtel @ dossier.substack.com (@JordanSchachtel) June 14, 2022
One Chinese woman shared her experience:
One bank customer in Zhengzhou told BBC Chinese that her status was red even though she had never been in contact with a confirmed case, and her most recent tests showed she was negative.
She added that she was visited by health officials who asked her to stay at home and refused to explain why her status had suddenly turned red.
The change in QR codes followed reports that three banks in China’s central Henan province have frozen at least $178 million of deposits.
Yu Zhou Xin Min Sheng Village Bank, Shangcai Huimin Country Bank and Zhecheng Huanghuai Community Bank froze all deposits on April 18, with all three telling customers they were upgrading internal systems. The banks have not issued any communication on the matter since, depositors said.
None of the three banks responded to Reuters’ emails or phone calls seeking comment.
While nominally small, China’s numerous local banks have outsized significance because they lend to small and mid-sized firms so their activity can be an indicator of the health of the economy, the world’s second-biggest after the United States.
There are reports are disruptions to electronic banking.
AIt’s understood the banks with branches across the Henan and Anhui Provinces successively issued announcements in April, stating they would suspend online banking and mobile banking services due to a system upgrade.
At the same time, clients reported their electronic deposits in online accounts, mobile apps and third-party platforms could not be withdrawn.
This led to depositors rushing to local bank branches, only to be told they were unable to withdraw funds.
By late May, images emerged on Chinese social media of demonstrations at the front of numerous bank branches. Asia Markets has verified these images with local contacts.
Given China’s economic ambitions, and how much it has used money to undermine the United States, these are developments that our press should be trying to cover in more detail…rather than push the January 6th show trial.DONATE
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