China Finally Quells 18-Day Uprising Over Landgrab

Local official arrested, 21 more sought by authorities
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 13, 2013 10:20 AM CDT
China Finally Quells 18-Day Uprising Over Landgrab
A photo from an uprising in Wukan, China on Dec. 5, 2011. A similar uprising happened in nearby Shangpu following a clash with the local Communist Party official. But the government cracked down on the protest on Sunday.   (AP Photo)

An 18-day uprising in southern China has finally been squashed by Chinese authorities, ending with nine people arrested and between 30 and 40 injured, reports the Guardian. Residents of Shangpu, a small farming community of 3,000 people, protested after the local Communist Party chief, Li Baoyu, leased an 81-acre plot of land to his friend without the villagers' permission. But when Li sent 30 cars full of thugs with shovels and steel pipes to intimidate the villagers, they responded violently, chasing away the heavies and burning their cars.

When police went to the village on Sunday to remove the burned-out cars, the violence re-ignited, so authorities sent in 3,000 security forces and riot personnel, cutting the electricity and phone service. "They didn't say a thing and started firing teargas and beating villagers with truncheons," said one witness. Two officials were removed from their posts by authorities, who also arrested Li. The government is also seeking 21 others, including the man who was supposed to lease the land. Villagers are asking for new elections to replace Li, similar to what happened after a nearby uprising in 2011. (More China stories.)

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