Thousands pour onto streets in Shenzhen, Guangzhou to protest the Japanese

Posted: 08/19/2012 5:53 pm

Thousands of people marched through the streets of Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and other cities in China today to protest the Japanese claims to the Diaoyu Islands, known as the Senkaku in Japanese.

The islands have become a flashpoint in Sino-Japanese relations of late, with a Hong Kong boat reaching the Japanese-administered islands last week and unfurling a Chinese flag.  Both countries insist the rocks, in an area rich in oil and gas, belong to them.

People in both Shenzhen and Guangzhou took to the streets today, along with their compatriots in Beijing, Hangzhou, Yiwu, Chengdu, Nanchang, Wenzhou, Taiyuan, Suzhou, and Changsha, to protest a Japanese landing at one of the uninhabited islands this morning.

Reports from Shenzhen and Guangzhou indicate thousands of people marched through the streets denouncing Japan, with some even smashing Japanese-made cars.  Photos of the protests are below.

RTHK has some details:

More than a hundred people gathered near the complex housing the Japanese consulate in Guangzhou, chanting “Japan get out of the Diaoyu Islands,” Xinhua news agency said.

In Shenzhen, protesters gathered at an outdoor plaza, waving Chinese flags and shouting slogans, Xinhua said, but did not give the number of participants.

Zhang Pei, one participant, said protesters were marching towards a train station on the border with Hong Kong.

“The demonstration is strung out for seven to eight kilometres. Many police are escorting us along the street,” he told AFP news agency.

Reuters reports on the landing made by the Japanese Sunday morning, which may have sparked the protest:

Early on Sunday, 10 members of a group of more than 100 Japanese nationalists who sailed to the island chain swam ashore to one of the islets and waved Japanese flags.

Three Japanese Coast Guard vessels were nearby, a Reuters TV journalist on board one of the boats said.

“I was hoping that someone with a real sense of Japanese spirit and courage would go and land and raise the flag, I just feel they’ve done a good job,” said Kazuko Uematsu, local lawmaker from Shizuoka Prefecture who was part of the flotilla.

The photos below are taken from Weibo.

(Thanks @MissXQ for the tips and photos).


Tropical Storm Kai-tak is heading our way

Posted: 08/16/2012 8:56 am

The recent warm weather will turn to persistent showers and gusty conditions as another typhoon heads for the PRD.

Severe Tropical Storm Kai-tak is making its way through the South China Sea, the third major storm to hit the region this season.

Current forecasts from the Hong Kong Observatory show the storm is expected to reach the PRD late Thursday and early Friday morning, and gradually head towards Guangxi Province.

Kai-tak battered the northern reaches of the Philippines, which was already reeling from the worst flooding in living memory, dumping hundreds of millimetres of rain.  Two people died after the typhoon caused severe flooding and landslides.

The PRD is being kept busy this year when it comes to typhoons.  Vicente, the most powerful storm in 13 years, clobbered us in July and Doksuri swing through before that.

Stick with The Nanfang as the storm system moves closer.  We’ll be be providing the latest updates from Guangdong, Macau, and the Hong Kong Observatory as they become available.

For the latest weather signals region-wide check out this website.


China Southern cuts flights to Philippines after diplomatic spat

Posted: 05/19/2012 7:00 am

China Southern at Hong Kong International Airport

A diplomatic spat between China and the Philippines has spilled over into aviation with the mainland’s biggest carrier, China Southern Airlines (CSA), temporarily slashing flights in response to large numbers of cancellations in recent weeks, Xinhua reports.

From May 26 to June 30, CSA is cutting its twice-daily Guangzhou-Manila service in half.

The move comes after a series of rows between Beijing and Manila after an incident on April 10 saw a Philippines warship involved in an altercation with Chinese fishermen in the disputed waters around Scarborough Shoal, which is known as Huangyan Island in China.

Relations between the two nations appear to be souring quickly. Both sides have been ramping up the rhetoric, with protests erupting in front of both Chinese and Philippino embassies. China’s National Tourism Administration has warned citizens that travelling to the Philippines may be dangerous due to “strong anti-China sentiment”, the BBC reported.