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Massive Fire Breaks Out Near Qipan Mountain in Shenyang

Manya Koetse

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In the afternoon of April 17, local time, a massive fire broke out near Qipan Mountain in the city of Shenyang in China’s northeast Liaoning Province.

Videos circulating on Chinese social media show how thick clouds of black smoke could be seen from a distance.

News sources on Weibo say the fire broke out earlier in the afternoon and was soon spreading due to strong winds in the area.

People’s Daily reports that over 1300 people are currently involved in a major operation to clear the area and fight the fire, including some 300 people from the fire department and 500 military staff.

The hashtag “Shenyang Qipan Mountain on Fire” (#沈阳棋盘山着火#) was one of the top trending topics on Chinese social media by Wednesday night.

Qipan Mountain is the biggest natural scenic zone in Shenyang, covering 190 square kilometers. According to China Daily, the zone includes plant and animal reserves, a water sports area, a ski area, a hunting area, and a villa area.

At time of writing, there are no sources confirming what caused the fire and if it is under control yet.

The nearby Shenyang Zoo, however, did confirm on Weibo that the fire had not spread to its area and that the necessary emergency measures were taken to protect the wellbeing of their animals.

Many netizens expressed their concerns over the safety of the animals earlier in the day. Photos of animals being burnt in the fire were refuted and labeled as ‘fake news.’

By Manya Koetse

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Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, popular culture, and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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    anna

    April 30, 2019 at 12:53 pm

    Any follow-up news on the fire? Casualties? Area lost?

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China Local News

Pregnant Woman Throws Scalding Soup over Baby Girl in Malatang Restaurant

Manya Koetse

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An incident that occurred in Zhoukou city in China’s Henan province on the night of June 11 has gone viral on Chinese social media today.

Security cameras in a malatang (hot spicy soup) restaurant captured the moment a pregnant woman throws a bowl of hot soup at an 11-month-old girl.

The woman was allegedly annoyed because the baby was making noise by banging on the table with a spoon.

Footage making its rounds on social media shows how other customers in the restaurant stand up after witnessing the incident, with some going after the woman.

The baby girl reportedly sustained burn injuries on her back and buttocks.

According to various Chinese media reports, the culprit is a 28-year-old woman by the name of Ren. She received a 15-day prison sentence and a fine of 500 yuan ($72), but will not be detained at this point because she is pregnant.

See the video of the incident here:

The local public security bureau issued a statement on Weibo today, writing that the incident had occurred when Ren was dining at the restaurant together with her husband. She got into an argument with the other diners when their 11-month-old baby would not stop banging on the table.

Shortly after leaving the restaurant with her husband, the pregnant Ren then suddenly returned and threw the hot soup at the family, hurting the baby girl.

On social media, outraged commenters write that they think the woman will not be a good mother: “How can a woman like this raise a child?”

“This makes my hair stand up in anger! It’s just a baby!” others write.

The story is somewhat similar to another incident that went viral on Chinese social media last year, when a pregnant woman intentionally tripped a 4-year-old boy in a malatang restaurant in Baoji (watch video below for the full story).

By Manya Koetse

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China Insight

Zhejiang Movie Theatre Displays Blacklisted Individuals in Avengers Movie Preview

A special ‘trailer’ before the Avengers movie premiere showed the audience blacklisted individuals.

Manya Koetse

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A local movie theatre in the city of Lishui, Zhejiang province, showed a noteworthy ‘trailer’ before the Avengers: End Game premiere on April 24.

Chinese state tabloid Global Times reports that the sold-out premiere had a ‘surprise’ moment just before the movie was about to start: a short Public Service Announcement by the Liandu district court of Lishui displayed people who are currently on a ‘debt dodging black list.’

The short film also informed the cinema audience of potential consequences of being on a blacklist, including no traveling abroad, and no traveling by air or on high-speed trains.

According to Global Times, the local district court has registered a total of 5478 people on its blacklist since 2018.

The names and faces of more than 300 people on this list have reportedly been displayed on cinema screens, public LED screens, and on buildings. Allegedly 80 of them have since complied with court orders.

As part of China’s emerging Social Credit system project, there are public court-issued lists of ‘trust-breaking enforcement subjects’ (信被执行人名单), referring to people or companies who have failed to comply with court orders.

Individuals on the judgment defaulter blacklist system run by the court system, whose information is publicized, can risk having their photos and names displayed on local LED screens on courthouses or other buildings (Dai 2018, 26).

Blacklisted individuals on a Wuxi building (via Phoenix News).

Beyond that, they will face restrictions in various ways, from being denied bank credit to being restricted from staying in high-end hotels or traveling by air.

On Weibo, the Global Times post on the noteworthy cinema preview received over 4000 shares. The same news was also reported by CCTV and Phoenix News.

Some commenters joke about the Public Service Announcement, saying: “Blacklisters [can now say]: Mum! I was on TV! On a big IMAX screen! Together with the Avengers!”

Others leave comments in support of the measure, calling it “creative,” and saying: “This is good, we should implement this all across the country.”

“Blacklisters should be displayed on all kinds of platforms.”

“This is for people to lose on their social credit,” another commenter writes: “If you don’t want to ‘socially die’ then just fulfill your duties.”

But not everyone agrees. “People are buying a movie ticket to see their film,” one person says: “They suddenly get exposed to this kind of content that has nothing to do with them, what about their rights as a consumer?”

By Manya Koetse

References

Dai, Xin, Toward a Reputation State: The Social Credit System Project of China (June 10, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3193577 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3193577 [5.3.19].

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