Recently, the fire in Urumqi, Xinjiang left at least 10 people dead, fueling student discontent at dozens of colleges and universities in China. Then, that led to anti-lockdown protests at more than 50 colleges and universities, including two leading universities, Tsinghua University and Beijing University.
On the evening of November 24, a fire broke out in a high-rise apartment building in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, leading to 10 deaths and 9 injuries. Locals believe that the Chinese Communist Party’s “zero-COVID” policy and the extreme lockdown by the local government hindered rescue efforts and prevented the trapped people from escaping in time. Urumqi citizens couldn’t take it anymore and on November 25, they took to the streets and went straight to the city government headquarters to protest. causing a wave of protests across the country, other universities and colleges also acted accordingly.
The slogans on Sitong Bridge reappeared at Beijing University campus, students gathered to sing the National Anthem to protest
On November 26, many students from Beijing University flocked to the campus cafeteria. A video showed a large number of students gathered at the scene singing the national anthem to protest.
That night, news spread on the internet that at the entrance of the cafeteria of Beijing University campus, slogans were written on the wall, “Don’t need lockdown and control, need freedom! Don’t need nucleic acid testing, need to eat! ‘Lying flat’ is not practical! Open your eyes and see the world! Zero-COVID is a fantasy! This is just a stepping stone!”
Then, security guards and staff of the university used their bodies to cover the banners on the walls. But the shocking thing is that the banners were quickly removed, some netizens even quipped: “Removing the slogans is faster than fighting the fire at Urumqi!”. However, after the students left, someone posted on the wall the words “Speak up to support the compatriots of the country”.
Netizen “Teacher Li is not your teacher” tweeted, “Latest news from Beijing University: Students have made a request not to take the PCR test to get in and out of school.
In this regard, the Vision Times quoted some netizens discussing: “Beijing University has already started, Beijing University has already started, the superiors barely can’t do anything”, “Beijing University has always been the pioneer”, “Beijing University stands up! Don’t be a slave to others!”, “Beijing University is a top university in China, so this incident is very important. I didn’t believe it before, but now the frustration of young people with the government is obvious”, “Beijing University is amazing, it’s our top university, it’s easy to influence.”
Some netizens also expressed dissatisfaction with the government’s removal of the slogans: “Words were erased, ‘He who excuses himself, accuses himself’, huh?”, “Words can be erased, but thoughts cannot”, “Can’t erase memory and humanity”, “This wall already has a different meaning”, “The wave of students come, the wheel of history rolls, no one can stop it! “
Some netizens said, “From the bottom of my heart, I have never been so proud of Tsinghua University students in the past 33 years.” A self-identified female student from Tsinghua University said: “If we are afraid of being arrested, and no one dares to speak up, I think our people will be disappointed in us, as students of Tsinghua University, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life!” The scene was filled with applause and shouts of “Keep it up!”.
Tsinghua University students gathered to sing the national anthem to protest and chanted “democracy, rule of law, freedom of speech”
On November 27, a netizen tweeted, “One to two thousand students gathered in front of Tsinghua University’s Zijingyuan today.” In the video, a female student screamed: “From now on, I won’t support the authorities anymore!” A male student also stood up and said, “I’ve had enough!” At this point, the people around applauded. Some netizens said: “Tsinghua University is proud of these people.”
Recently, not only Beijing University and Tsinghua University students protested the lockdown and control orders, but according to statistics from netizens, students from at least 50 colleges and universities including China University of Political Science and Law, Nanjing Communication University of China and Jilin University are all protesting the lockdown order in various ways.
Former BBC reporter in Hong Kong Vivian Wu shared a list of schools arranged by netizens on Twitter on November 27, showing that in just three days more than 50 universities in China erupted in student protests, many of which are top rank universities. She expressed anger at the regime and offered condolences to the victims.
Zhong Jinjiang, an Australian of Chinese descent and president of the Alliance for Democratic Unity of China, told Liberty Times that dozens of universities in China are joining forces to oppose the lockdown and control orders. The CCP is very worried right now. If it follow the will of the people and lifts the lockdown, it will create a dilemma for Xi Jinping. If the people’s grievances are not resolved, there may be a larger wave of protests. The outside world is watching and waiting.
Citizens unite to search for identity of police illegally arresting students
As colleges and universities across China continue to protest against the CCP, it has also been reported that some students have been illegally detained by police.
To protest against the CCP’s violent repression, some netizens later tweeted that “the people launched a risky search for the police officers who illegally detained the students and avenged him to the best of their ability.” Chinese netizens teamed up to search for the police officer’s personal information, including personal photo, personal address, parents’ home address, and even the officer’s identity card. (Picture of police information provided by netizens, photo 1, photo 2)
Related news also attracted netizen support. One said, “Please ask international humanitarian aid organizations for help.” Another said, “Chinese people stand up.”
At the same time, overseas democracy activists also called for Chinese consulates in various places to pay tribute to the victims, hold the CCP accountable, and support the voice of the people, including in New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, and Frankfurt.
Some students pointed out that people should speak up for their compatriots, their loved ones, family and friends who died in the fire.
Students of Xi’an Academy also stood up to protest. (Video)
When the students of Wuhan University of Technology commemorated the victims of the Urumqi fire, they were stopped by the school!