Officials deny rock musician's forced demolition claim

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, October 27, 2012
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Plans to demolish the family home of Chinese rock musician Zuoxiaozuzhou have been denied by local authorities in Jiangsu Province.

The artist claimed the house, owned by his father-in-law in a village near the city of Changzhou, was vandalized and his wife attacked, after they refused the government's demolition plan.

In a picture taken by Zuoxiaozuzhou's wife Bian Xiaoli on Wednesday, workers were seen dismantling the roof of their neighbor's house that shared a wall with their home.

Bian later had an altercation with five men near the home, who smashed her cell phone, Zuoxiaozuzhou said.

However, officials in Changzhou on Friday told Xinhua that they did not attempt to remove the house. Police were investigating as a window of the house was broken.

The five men engaged in the brawl were urban management officers, who were angered by Bian's attempt to film their patrol in the village, officials said.

They added that the village is designated for a subway project, and they were negotiating the purchase of the villagers' homes. Thirty-three of 40 households have agreed on the demolition.

Zuoxiaozuzhou, whose real name is Wu Hongjin, suspected the actions as threats from local officials, who he said had been planning to seize local land for property projects.

The musician created a buzz online by recording his "battle" against the seizure of his home. He composed a song entitled "nail households" to support those who have stood up to demolition of their properties.

He has been appealing for support through his microblog since Tuesday.

With 710,000 followers on Sina Weibo, his posts have triggered an outpouring of support from Chinese netizens and celebrities.

Bian and her father Friday told Xinhua reporters the house was in a safe condition.

The use of land for urban and property development is a thorny issue in many parts of China, with some companies engaging in land grabs and forced evictions.

Last year, the central government banned such acts in a circular that instructed local authorities to stop the forcible occupation of land and the demolition of homes against the will of the owners. Endi

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