Elderly citizens in the megacity of Wuhan in central China and the northeastern megacity of Dalian launched large-scale protests in the span of a week against the Chinese Communist Party’s cuts to their health benefits in its recent medical insurance reform. On Feb. 15, the protest in Wuhan was met with suppression by the regime, with elderly citizens being beaten, arrested, and dispersed. Dafei (pseudonym), a resident in Wuhan, reported that the situation was terrifying. An Ming (pseudonym), an elderly citizen who was at the protest, described how the Chinese regime dispersed the protesters. They were separated into groups by riot police and other officers, and were led to a building behind Zhongshan Park. At around 3 pm, Jiefang Avenue was cleared of protesters.
Yang Wei (pseudonym), a retiree in Wuhan, was forced to stay at home on the day of the protest by police, who called him multiple times to keep him under control. Ms. Liang (pseudonym), another resident in Wuhan, reported that tens of thousands of people stood up to protest against the tyranny of the CCP, and that she saw policemen beating the elderly at the scene.
Liang believes that the CCP has completely lost people’s support, and that the protest will awaken more ordinary people and young people across the country. Yang believes that there will be another protest soon and hopes to get attention and help from international media.
Ning Haizhong, Hong Ning, Yi Ru, Zhao Fenghua, and Hong Ning contributed to this report.