Early in the morning of June 26, riots erupted in the streets of Zuotan, a village in southeastern Guangdong Province.
According to accounts posted by locals online, riot police clashed with villagers, beating unarmed residents who had surrounded the village’s Communist Party headquarters. They were there to demand answers from the local Party Secretary over cheap, secret sales of land by officials – villagers depend on that land for housing and farming.
Photos of the clash have been posted on Chinese migro-blog site Sina Weibo. Villagers reported several injuries. Some were hospitalized, including an 81-year-old Korean War veteran who was beaten unconscious by police. The sign plastered on this police vehicle reads “Thief’s Car” and the visible part of this sign says, “Return my land.”
State-run media reported that villagers had trapped two local officials in a car, and police were there to free them.
Sina has since blocked search results for Zuotan on Weibo, and deleted posts.