Thousands of Farmers in Northern China Protest, 20 Arrested

Around 1,400 farmers from Mudanjiang city in Heilongjiang Province took to the streets on April 9 to protest against village cadres selling the village’s commonly owned land, according to a dissident website.

Peasants held banners saying: “Protect people’s interests, punish corruption, and return the land to the people.” The parade stretched from the Hongyun Bridge to the Cultural Palace, causing traffic congestion at the crossroads, according to the message on the website of the Chinese Jasmine Revolution.

It was reported that Chinese communist authorities have mobilized a large number of police to blockade nearby streets, and the police have clashed with protesters. Many were injured and more than 20 were arrested, the notice said.

Incidents like this take place across China regularly, as villagers risk their lives to protest against collusion between Communist Party officials and local business and industrial interests.

In the current case, it was reported that local village cadres illegally seized 750 acres of orchard land and built commercial structures on it. Villagers petitioned higher authorities a number of times but their case made no progress. They then decided to escalate the matter, mobilizing over a thousand people in a village of just over 5,000 inhabitants to march on the streets and obstruct traffic.

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