Chinese police arrested 28 people who took part in last week's uprising against a brutal campaign enforcing the country's one child policy in Bobai County (Guangxi province).
A report by Asia News said officials initially denied the protests were taking place, and later attributed the rioting to an overreaction to nothing more than the occasional high fine. The 28 individuals arrested face punishment for allegedly instigating the uprising.
A crackdown on violators of the one-child policy triggered massive unrest and the outbreak of violence in the southwest region of the country, as villagers fought back against government officials and the one-child policy enforcers.
Thousands of Chinese peasants rioted over exorbitant fines, forced abortions and sterilizations, and the destruction and confiscation of property inflicted on the communities by family planning officers.
Officials in Bobai County had imposed retroactive taxation on those who had violated the one-child policy, dating back to 1980. The sudden and massive tax burden was out of reach for many villagers — witnesses said officials sent out "family planning work squads" to collect the money or confiscate belongings from those who couldn't pay.
As many as five people were reported killed in the riots, including three officials who had led the enforcement campaign. Protestors filled the streets and stormed government offices.
County Chief Huang Shaoming admitted birth control enforcers might have "stirred discontent" with "problematic" ways of ensuring compliance, but said he considered the riots to be the result of "backward ideas about birth control and the rule of law."
Local government officials in Bobai demanded in March that birth control officials enforce the one-child policy or jeopardize their jobs.