Thursday , 19 July 2018
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Rare Strike in Beijing over migrant crackdown storms the internet

Sofian Khan

Hundreds of protesters have participated in a strike of the Chinese capital to pillory Beijing’s crackdown on migrant communities with devotion of “violent evictions violate human rights”. The participants gathered on the streets of Feijia village that is about 12 miles northeast of Tiananmen Square on Sunday. According to activists thousands of migrant workers were forced to move from their houses as since September, authorities intensified efforts to drive “low-end” migrant workers out of the city as a deadly tenement fire rose. The protest wasn’t reported in the country’s Communist party controlled press but, videos and photographs took over the internet of the event with human rights campaigners cheering. “They have a very well-developed apparatus for responding. They do some divide and conquer [among protest leaders], they make some compromises, they pay a few people off they might arrest a few people or sometimes even beat a few people up. But usually their repression is pretty targeted – they don’t do mass arrests in most cases – and they make the problem go away,” said Eli Friedman, a Cornell University academic who studies China’s labour movement.During visits to affected communities last week, several victims of the crackdown directly – and unusually – pointed the finger of blame at Xi. “I think what is happening is that … Xi Jinping has water in his head,” said one angry migrant from Anhui province.

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