WATCH: Chinese anti-COVID lockdown protest betrays frustration with severe measures
Video allegedly from Guangzhou in China shows demonstrators breaking down barriers as they protest against the nation‘s severe COVID-19 lockdown policy.
In a video posted by Disclose.tv, hundreds of people march down the street, kicking aside barriers and chanting. At one point, people turn around and run back the other way, kicking over what barriers remain standing.
China has maintained a strict policy called zero-COVID in which it would shut down entire cities with only a few cases of COVID-19 detected in order to identify and isolate any infected individuals. The treatment of those individuals has bordered on inhumane.
Officials ordered the arrests of nine lockdown enforcers in the Shandong province who had beaten a resident, who refused to comply with orders, after a video captured the incident and went viral online.
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The local police said they arrested the workers for using “excessive force.”
“The public security force will severely crack down on illegal and criminal acts that infringe upon citizens’ personal safety and other legitimate rights and interests in accordance with the law, and spare no effort to maintain social harmony and stability,” the police said in a statement.
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Last week, officials reaffirmed their commitment to the policy, saying prevention measures must not be relaxed.
The lockdowns have seen millions of residents under excessive restrictions as the government carries out its testing: Across China, 65 million citizens in over 30 cities remained under lockdown in September of this year alone.
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Officials vowed to “marshal all available resources, mobilize all forces and take all possible measures” to stop the outbreaks.
But residents have started to push back against the restrictions. Videos and images of the Guangzhou protest flooded Chinese social media, according to one resident.
“It was quite tense out there last night. Everyone made sure their doors were locked,” a local by the name of Chet told Reuters.
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“When it happened so close to me I found it really upsetting,” he added. “I couldn’t sleep last night after watching those images.”
China reported 17,772 new COVID-19 infections as of Nov. 14, an almost 2,000 case increase from the previous day.
Fox News’ Julia Musto and Andrew Mark Miller contributed to this report.
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