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Weibo Netizens Discuss Spooky Kidnapping Case

News of the kidnapping of a 3-year-old girl in Guangdong has become a trending topic on Weibo. A woman dressed in black, posing as a hungry beggar, turned out to be a ruthless child abductor.

Manya Koetse

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News of the kidnapping of a 3-year-old girl in Guangdong has become a trending topic on Weibo. A woman dressed in black, posing as a hungry beggar, turned out to be a ruthless child abductor.

On the evening of January 14th, a grandfather was taking a walk with his 3-year-old granddaughter in Zhongshan, Guangdong, when they ran into a woman on the streets. The woman, all dressed in black, said she did not have any money and that she was hungry. The grandfather invited the hungry woman back to his house for some food.

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At the house, when the grandfather was not paying attention, the woman suddenly took off and kidnapped the 3-year-old girl.

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Guangdong police started to search for the woman on Thursdaynight. The next day, on the morning of January 15, they found the woman and arrested her. They were able to rescue the 3-year-old.

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The news became trending under the hashtag of ‘First ask for food, then kidnap granddaughter’ (#请吃饭反遭拐走孙女#), and was read over 156,000 times by Friday night.

“People should get the death sentence for child trafficking,” one netizen responds to the news. Another netizen says: “Child traffickers have no sense of shame.”

Child trafficking is a serious problem in China; around 70,000 children are kidnapped and sold on the black market every year. The abduction of children has become a common problem since the 1980s.

China’s one child policy is one reason for China’s child trafficking problem, as it often involves cases where children are sold to families that cannot have a baby of their own. It also involves those cases where people prefer a baby boy, due to traditional dominant beliefs that only boys can support the family. Some children are sold to criminal gangs and are sent to the streets begging for money, often suffering abuse. What worsens the situation is many parents are willing to sell their offspring to make money, or to avoid having to pay a fine for having a (second or third) child.

Besides condemning child traffickers in general, many Weibo netizens also condemn this case because the woman took advantage of the grandfather’s kindness. “If these sort of things continue to happen,” one Weibo user says: “then no one will do a good deed anymore.”

By Manya Koetse

©2016 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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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China Local News

China’s Shulan City in “Wartime Mode” after Recording 13 COVID-19 Infections

Local authorities announced a “wartime mode” lockdown due to 13 new local coronavirus cases in Shulan.

Manya Koetse

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The city of Shulan in China’s Jilin Province is top trending on Chinese social media today after local authorities announced a “wartime mode” lockdown due to 13 new local coronavirus cases.

These are the first local infections in the entire province after a period of 73 days, China News reports, with other previous cases all being infections from abroad.

Last week, on May 7th, a female resident was the first to be tested positive for COVID-19. The city in northeast China is now the only place in the PRC to be marked as “high risk.”

One page on social media platform Weibo dedicated to the topic of Shulan going into “wartime mode” (“战时状态”) had received over 190 million views by Monday evening local time.

What does this “wartime mode” entail?
– All residents stay home, lockdown of residential compounds
– All public places closed
– Schools closed
– All public transportation suspended
– No more selling of fever-reducing medicine in clinics or stores

According to CGTN, a total of 290 people who have been in close contact with the infected patients have been traced and placed under medical observation.

For more COVID-19 related articles, please click here.

By Manya Koetse (@manyapan)
Follow @whatsonweibo

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2020 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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China Local News

On Wuhan’s ‘Reopening Day’, Even Traffic Jams Are Celebrated

As the COVID-19 lockdown has ended in Wuhan, many people are happy to see the city’s traffic finally getting busy again. “I hated traffic jams before, now it makes me happy to see them.”

Manya Koetse

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It was chilly and grey in Wuhan when the coronavirus epicenter city went into a full lockdown on January 23 of this year. On April 8, 76 days later, it is sunny and twenty degrees warmer outside as people leave their homes to resume work or go for a stroll.

The end of the Wuhan lockdown is a special day for many, as the city finally lifted the 11-week-long ban that shut down all travel to and from the city in a radical effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.

On Wednesday, city residents returned to work as public transport started again. Roads, bridges, and tunnels were reopened, and the local airport resumed flights.

On Chinese social media, various hashtags relating to the Wuhan lockdown end have become popular topics. Using hashtags such as “Wuhan Lifts the Ban” (#武汉解封#), “Wuhan Open Again after 76 Days” (#武汉暂停76天后重启#), and “Wuhan Reopens” (#武汉重启#), the end of the coronavirus ban is a much-discussed news item, along with the spectacular midnight light show that was organized to celebrate the city’s reopening.

The Wuhan lightshow, image via Xinhua.

“Today has finally arrived! It’s been difficult for the people of Wuhan,” some commenters write.

According to China’s official statistics, that are disputed, over 3330 people have died from the new coronavirus since its outbreak; 80% of these fatal cases were reported in Wuhan. On April 6, authorities claimed that for the first time since the virus outbreak, there were zero new COVID-19 deaths.

Some state media, including People’s Daily, report that the reopening of restaurants and food shops is going smoothly in the city, as people – for the first time since January – are back to buying pan-fried dumplings and noodles from their favorite vendors.

Meanwhile, the fact that the traffic in some Wuhan areas is back to being somewhat congested is something that is widely celebrated on social media.

Some call the mild traffic congestions “great”, viewing it as a sign that the city is coming back to life again after practically turning into a ghost town for all these weeks.

“I hated traffic jams before, now it makes me happy to see them,” one Weibo commenter writes.

“I won’t complain about congested traffic again, because it’s a sign the streets are flourishing,” another Weibo user posted.

While netizens and media outlets are celebrating the end of the lockdown, several Chinese media accounts also remind people on social media that although the ban has been lifted, people still need to be vigilant and refrain from gathering in groups and standing close to each other.

For more COVID-19 related articles, please click here.

By Manya Koetse (@manyapan)
Follow @whatsonweibo

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2020 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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