Six months into the job of Beijing Communist Party secretary and mayor of the capital, Xi Jinping protege Cai Qi 蔡奇 is facing his first major leadership test over the recent mass evictions of migrant workers from their homes in the name of public safety, the South China Morning Post reports.
- Immediately following a deadly November 18 fire in a southern Beijing migrant neighborhood, Cai pushed for rapid demolition of the surrounding area, but a resulting public outcry forced him to backtrack somewhat in his public comments, although a cycle of demolitions, protests, and crackdowns has continued.
- The SCMP mentions a leaked report on the evictions, in which “a think tank associated with the state-run Xinhua news agency quoted a scholar as saying ‘the Party should hold Beijing authorities accountable’ because they were ‘making a mess for the Party.’”
- The New York Times looks at how the crackdown has hit the children of migrant workers, who must often attend unlicensed schools: “Educators say that more than a dozen schools have been shut down or demolished this year, often with just a few days’ notice, cutting off access to education for as many as 15,000 children. Many of these children are under 12.”
- See more on “Beijing’s year of demolition” on SupChina:
China closes more than 13,000 websites in past three years / Reuters
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China steps up to broker peace in Afghan-Pakistan conflict / Bloomberg
- Taiwan: Military drills
Taiwan says Chinese air force exercised near island 16 times in last year / Reuters