In Beijing, Evictions Make Room for Olympics
Posted by Sarah Amandolare to Global Voices Online
According to Reuters, as construction for Olympic venues proceeds and Beijing is beautified for the big event, thousands of residents are been forcibly evicted from their homes, typically without notice or compensation.
Chinese officials deny any wrongdoing, claiming that evictions give Beijing residents more living space, and that the reported number of forced evictions is inaccurately high.
In defiance of the Chinese government, Human Rights Watch published a report on the forcible eviction problem, detailing what residents must face after losing their homes.
Newly homeless Chinese say their rights have been violated, and they’ve been injured by government-hired thugs sent to remove them from their homes should they protest.
Some residents have even been arrested for speaking out against evictions. In December 2004, Ye Guozhu was sentenced to four years in prison for organizing a peaceful protest against forced evictions. Guozhu has said he was brutalized by police, and has been held in shackles in his prison cell.
China’s recent earthquake left millions homeless, but the government has been praised for its speedy response to that crisis. Meanwhile, forcibly evicted residents without homes or redress for their loss may be watching the Olympic Games from the streets, while their leaders label them liars.
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Tags: 2008 Beijing Olympics , Construction , Eviction
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