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Chinese city of Tangshan loses ‘civilized’ status after women beaten in restaurant


China: Tangshan has been awarded “civilized” status four times since 2011. (File)

Beijing:

After a group of men assaulted four women outside a restaurant in China recently, the city of Tangshan was stripped of its honorary “civilized” status. The assault on the women had sparked public outrage, with many demanding justice.

Camera footage from the barbecue restaurant on June 10 showed a man slapping and dragging a woman down the street by her hair after she appeared to reject his advances. Other men then joined her, attacking her companions and leaving two women lying on the side of the street.

Two of the women remain hospitalized in the intensive care unit (ICU), officials said this week, while authorities said they have arrested nine people involved in the attack.

The incident, which was caught on CCTV cameras, also renewed a national debate about violence against women in China.

A hashtag on social media site Weibo started making rounds after the incident in Tangshan, in the northern province of Hebei. Soon after, it caught the attention of users, NBC News reported.

The video has been viewed hundreds of millions of times. Hundreds of thousands of people commented after videos of the attack were posted online, with many demanding action against the accused.

On Wednesday, the Civilization Office of the Communist Party Central Committee removed the city from the national honorary list of “civilized cities”.

According to the official website of the office, the “Civilized National Cities” are selected on eight criteria, including good social order and a healthy and evolving social atmosphere.

Tangshan has received the status four times since 2011, the last in 2020. The committee’s decision is the latest in a series of official responses to the attack and the waves of anger it has sparked online.

Following the attack, the Hebei Provincial Security Authority on Tuesday launched a disciplinary review and investigation into the Tangshan Police Bureau’s response to the incident.

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