China has issued the first warning to citizens still thinking of testing the regime’s resolve with further “zero-COVID” protests.
According to Xinhua News Agency, the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission declared that it must take “effective measures” to “resolutely safeguard national security and social stability.”
Without directly mentioning the recent demonstrations, the country’s top security body further swore to “resolutely crack down on infiltration and sabotage activities by hostile forces in accordance with the law, resolutely crack down on illegal and criminal acts that disrupt social order and effectively maintain overall social stability.” Note that “resolutely crackdown” was repeated.
The agency also reiterated loyalty to current Chinese leader Xi Jinping, who has been called on to step down during the protests.
The stern warning was issued late on Tuesday, November 29, after law enforcement was mobilized across protest venues. According to The Associated Press, the authorities have checked people’s IDs and examined their phones for images, forbidden apps, and other possible traces of the demonstrations.
Online footage on November 29 showed that military tanks had emerged on the streets of Xuzhou city, Jiangsu province, sparking fears of a 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre repeat. That year, the Chinese Communist Party ended weeks of public uprisings by having the military mass execute protesters in just hours, with people being run over by tanks.
A protester told CNN that even police dogs were roaming the streets.
The person, who asked not to be identified, said, “There were too many police and we had to cancel.”
According to another protester from Shanghai, as the police arrested people, they told them that they were manipulated by “ill-intentioned people who want to start a color revolution.”