China Blocks Travel for Parents Planning Quake Protest

From New York Times:

The local police stopped parents who were trying to travel secretly from southwest China to Beijing this week to ask the central government for a full investigation into school collapses that killed their children during the May earthquake, several of the parents said Thursday.

A leader of the grieving parents, Sang Jun, who lost his 11-year-old son, said in a telephone interview that he had been detained overnight and released only after more than 60 other parents gathered at the gates of the town government building to demand his release.

The restrictive measures taken by the local government show that the widespread destruction of schools during the devastating earthquake on May 12 in southwest China continues to be a delicate political issue. The number of students who died in the May earthquake is unknown, although estimates suggest the figure may be as high as 10,000. They died when schools crumbled during the powerful tremor, while in many cases buildings around the schools remained standing.



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