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Chinese Policeman Accused Of Brutality For Choking Woman With Knees

A policeman in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen has been accused of misconduct after a video of him choking a woman with his knees surfaced online. 

According to media reports, on December 9 a 23-year-old Chinese woman surnamed Cheng published a post on Weibo documenting how a policeman had abused her.  

Cheng explained that on December 8 she had an altercation with a security guard inside a building and had called the police. When the police arrived she asked to see the CCTV footage of the incident, but the policeman refused and threatened her with a stun gun. When she refused to leave the room, he allegedly threw her to the ground.

"[The policeman] pulled my hair, forcefully threw me on the bench, and trapped my head and throat with his knees," she wrote in the post. "I immediately felt like I was choking."  

A video uploaded on Weibo and later on Youtube shows the policeman pinning Cheng down with his knees. Another woman tries to help Cheng escape from the policeman's lock. The person who took the video is heard urging the policeman to let her go. The policemen shouts at the witnesses and orders them to leave the room. 

Cheng's post was quickly deleted from Weibo and replaced by a statement: "I am grateful to all netizens on Weibo for your attention. With regard to this incident, I thank the Luohu police for their sincere communication and help. The matter has now been resolved, I hope that people will no longer comment on it or disseminate it. I once again thank everyone for their help and support!" she wrote.  

On Sunday the police department of Shenzhen's Luohu district released its own statement, arguing that Cheng had pushed the police officer, who subdued her "with his bare hands" after she had not heeded his warnings to cooperate. Cheng allegedly "violently resisted" and "kicked" the policeman. Cheng was subsequently taken to the police department and "educated on common law."

In recent years various cases of police brutality have become public in China. One of the most infamous incidents happened in 2016, when Lei Yang, a 29-year-old researcher at Beijing’s Renmin University, died in police custody under mysterious circumstances.

In a 2016 article The Global Times, an official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), claimed that people should have more understanding for the police forces because they are understaffed and underpaid. 

"China has 1.6 million police officers, meaning there are around 12 officers per 10,000 people in the country," lower than the global median number of 30 police officers per 10,000 citizens, the piece said. It added that police in China "are also asked to intervene in political matters, such as dispersing protests or putting people such as petitioners, dissidents and other politically sensitive figures under house arrest." 

As an example, the newspaper cited the fact that the police in China's "restive far western Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region ... suffer more pressure than most others due to their fight against separatism, terrorism and extremism."

The Global Times did not mention that Chinese police's tasks of repressing dissent and minorities violate basic human rights. According to China's state-run media, judicial and law enforcement professionals should "follow the correct political direction and stay absolutely loyal to the party." 


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