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Sacked chief tells of Weng'an violence
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The police chief sacked after violent protests over a teenage girl's death in southwest China's Guizhou Province, said yesterday that mass demonstrations were nothing new.

Shen Guirong, former director of the public security bureau of Guizhou's Weng'an County, told China News Weekly that police had trouble with people in Weng'an over issues such as social security, relocation and mining.

He arrived in Weng'an in July 2002 and planned to use tighter rules to keep the county safe and peaceful.

However, in recent years there had been massive disputes. Sometimes hundreds of police officers were dispatched to force migrants to relocate or demolish illegal buildings and this enraged local residents, Shen said.

A forced relocation in 2004 led to the siege of a government building. Scores of people attacked government officials at Longtan Town on December 16, Shen said.


In the fight to free government officials, including the county chief, police officers wounded several villagers.

Hundreds of them then went on the rampage.

During the demolition of illegal buildings last year, conflicts broke out again among local people and the police, Shen said.

The county relocated many people during the construction of a reservoir which led to a series of disputes from 2004. There were also frequent conflicts between villagers and mine owners.

On June 28, 30,000 people took part in the violent protest in Weng'an after 17-year-old Li Shufen's death. It was confirmed she drowned, but many believed she was a victim of a rape and murder.

Four officials, including Weng'an's Party chief and Shen were sacked because of "severe malfeasance."

(Shanghai Daily July 10, 2008)

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