Armed riot police in southern China have paraded four alleged violators of COVID-19 rules through the streets, leading to criticism of the government’s heavy-handed approach and re-introduction of the controversial use of public shaming.
- Suspects were publicly shamed for allegedly transporting illegal immigrants while China’s borders remain largely closed due to COVID-19
- Shaming was one of the measures announced by the local government in August as punishment for breaking health rules
- A national ban on public shaming had been imposed in 2010 amid outcry from human rights activists
Four masked suspects in hazmat suits — carrying placards displaying their photos and names — were paraded in front of a large crowd in Guangxi region’s Jingxi city this week, state-run Guangxi News reported.
Photos of the event showed each suspect held by two police officers — wearing face shields, masks and hazmat suits — and surrounded by a circle of police in riot gear, some holding guns.
The four were accused of transporting illegal migrants while China’s borders remain largely closed due to the pandemic, Guangxi News said.
Jingxi is near the Chinese border with Vietnam.