A little trouble brewing in Big China.
I recently reported that China had used a COVID-19 app to limit the movement of its citizens to banks in one region after three local banks had frozen accounts. This appears to have been done to prevent a bank run.
Protesters have returned to the banks, only to be attacked by China’s security forces.
This time the authorities sent in guards en masse to break up the demonstration. They beat the protesters, kicking them to the ground and shoving them onto buses — the harshest response yet to the bank depositors’ efforts to seek redress.
Photos and video of plainclothes security agents attacking the protesters were shared on Chinese social media, stirring anger over the use of force. While protest images are often quickly censored in China, the footage from Zhengzhou was still widely available on Monday, with one hashtag viewed 32 million times on Weibo, the Twitter-like service.
The protesters had gathered in front of the Zhengzhou branch of the nation’s central bank, the People’s Bank of China. Protesters interviewed by phone said that dozens of people had been sent to hospitals after being beaten.
“We came all the way to Zhengzhou to get our money back, and we didn’t want to have conflicts with anyone,” said Feng Tianyu, 31, who lives in the northern city of Harbin. “But the government sent so many people to deal with the unarmed people. We were cheated financially, beaten physically and traumatized mentally.”
Reports show the brutality of the response by the Chinese forces to over 1000 citizens, who gathered in front of their bank clamoring for their money.
The scene quickly descended into chaos, as security officers dragged protesters down the stairs and beat those who resisted, including women and the elderly, according to witnesses and social media videos.
One woman from eastern Shandong province told CNN she was pushed to the ground by two security guards, who twisted and injured her arm. A 27-year-old man from the southern city of Shenzhen, surnamed Sun, said he was kicked by seven or eight guards on the ground before being carried away. A 45-year-old man from the central city of Wuhan said his shirt was completely torn at the back during the scuffle.
Many said they were shocked by the sudden burst of violence by the security forces.
“I did not expect them to be so violent and shameless this time. There was no communication, no warning before they brutally dispersed us,” said one depositor from a metropolis outside Henan who had protested in Zhengzhou previously, and who requested CNN conceal his name due to security concerns.
Further details may be hard to come by, but it is clear there is a little trouble brewing in Big China.
Chinese authorities violently dispersed a peaceful protest by hundreds of depositors, who sought in vain to demand their life savings back from banks that have run into a deepening cash crisis.https://t.co/UCLRGWRz4h
— CNN (@CNN) July 11, 2022
— China Uncensored (@ChinaUncensored) July 11, 2022
1. Massive protest out break in Henan province，China.
More than 3000 protesters who are victim of bank financial fraud show up in capital City of Henan.
None of them can withdraw money from account now.
— 巴丢草 Badiucao (@badiucao) July 10, 2022
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.