Villagers defend their home against demolition squad’s fire extinguishers

Nail household; nail house; stubborn nail: (钉子户) A person or household that refuses to relocate due to compensation disagreements when the land is requisitioned for new construction.


Conflicts between the demolition squad and the nail household being forcefully relocated often happen in China. Nemours huge tragic incidents have occurred in the recent past. Chinese residents often took extreme measures in protecting their properties, like throwing home-made fire bombs at the demolition squad. But the most common strategy is just holding their ground and threatens to suicide, to live and die with the house. Shockingly, there were at least 2 incidents in the past year, the residents actually killed themselves, burned themselves alive in front of the government demolition squad to protest the unfair compensation and land requisition and to show their will of “live or die with their homes”. Of course many other casualties like this also can happen…

From Netease:

On April 13, the above scene in the video happened in Yangqing Town, Yanqing County in Beijing while the town government is to forcefully tear down villager Kang Shunqing’s home. Originally this area had 603 residents, since September of last year, over 500 of the homes were tore down, and currently only 26 homes are still there. 53 year old Kang Shunqing’s family is one of them.

8 am yesterday, town government organized demolition squad members arrived one after another and announced that they were going to use force. While the excavator was operating, Mr. and Ms. Kang fought back fiercely. Their neighbors from the other leftover homes also came to help them fighting back against the demolition squad.

Kang said in the beginning, a dozen people were guarding the outside room, but the excavator directly opened up the roof and walls, and a few beams even broke down. So everyone retreated back to the back room. Then suddenly 7 or 8 men dressed in black rushed into the house and tried to pull them out but was unsuccessful. In order to stop the demolition, they also threw beer bottles out.

1 pm in the afternoon, the number of people dressed in black increased to more than 20, and they all were wearing motorcycle helmets and holding fire extinguishers. The roof and all around the house were surrounded by people in black. They began to open the tiles, breaking the windows, and also sprayed their fire extinguishers from various angles into the room. People inside of the room were coking by the dry powder and covered their mouth and nose with their clothes. Some people in black started to throw bricks and sticks into the house. Subsequently, many rushed in and started beating on Mr. and Ms. Kang and some neighbors to the ground. Other neighbors came forward and pulled the injured couple back into the room.



Yesterday afternoon, the reporter went to the scene, the house was already in horrendous shape. Kang Shunqing sat by the door, holding a walking stick and covered by dry powder. People dressed in black already left the scene at that time. Ms. Kang was lying in bed, constantly groaning. There was a huge hole on the roof.

Around 6 pm, the demolition squad and government staffs completely left the scene. Kang Shunqing’s family walked out of the room. In order to thank his neighbors’ help, he knelt down on the spot and started kowtowing to thank everyone.

Kang Shunqing said, in September last year, the relocation compensation was given as 2 new units of homes, but they must pay per square meter to buy them. “I am a common person; do not have a job, where do I get the tens and thousands.” So the he never signed the agreement, until the forced eviction.



Yanqing town government spokesperson said, this is an old village reconstruction project. Because Kang Shungqing was dissatisfied with the town government, he refused to relocate. They have sent people to negotiate number of times but had no results.

This spokesperson said, currently there are 26 remaining villagers and seriously affected the other 500 families’ process of moving back to their new homes. For the interests of the majority of the villagers, they decided to carry out the force demolition. He said the government’s relocation compensation takes the common people into account, the new homes were offered at 918 yuan per square meters, the government is to make up more than 900 yuan per square meters for them.

He also said, yesterday morning they first used loudspeaker but Kang Shungqing threw beer bottles at them and injured one staff member’s face, he had 8 stitches. And those men wearing helmets are all from the demolition company, the reason for them to use fire extinguishers and spray dry powder into the room was that they thought the beer bottles were lit with fire.

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