Chinese citizens persevered with mass protests even as their government cracked down on demonstrators, the New York Post reported Tuesday.
Protesters in Guangzhou began "jubilantly destroying" one of the regime's COVID-19 testing sites, according to videos shared online. Meanwhile, "throngs of people filled the streets—some waving white sheets of paper, the symbol of the protests." Several protesters flipped over a van that appears connected to the testing site, a symbol of the Chinese Communist government's draconian zero-COVID policy.
In other cities, protesters gathered even though the regime dispatched huge numbers of police officers.
"It's really scary," said Philip Qin, a resident of Beijing, which last weekend saw some of the largest protests.
All across China, protesters are demanding an end to the zero-COVID policy, which has caused years of lockdowns. Dozens of people reportedly died in a burning apartment building that they were unable to escape because of COVID-19 regulations.
Protesters have gone so far as to call for the resignation of Chinese dictator Xi Jinping and the fall of the Chinese Communist Party, which the Post called "an unprecedented display of dissent." Demonstrators in Shanghai chanted, "Xi Jinping! Step down! CCP! Step down!"
Chinese police have started tracking down anyone who might be involved in the protests.
"We are all desperately deleting our chat history," one person who witnessed the protests in Beijing told Reuters.
Wang Dan, a leader of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests who now lives in exile, warned at a press conference that authorities will use "stronger force to violently suppress protesters."
Wang nevertheless expressed hope, saying, "This protest symbolizes the beginning of a new era in China … in which Chinese civil society has decided not to be silent and to confront tyranny."