Five years ago Wednesday, the tiny fishing enclave of Wukan drew international attention after villagers rose up in a land dispute, eventually securing a landmark local election in China. It has since become a cautionary tale for the nation’s democratic reformers.
The village about 150 kilometers (90 miles) northeast Hong Kong erupted anew this month, as protesters returned to the streets to challenge the graft conviction of one of the last remaining leaders elected after the 2011 uprising. Videos circulated on social media showed riot police clashing with brick-throwing demonstrators and raiding the homes of alleged organizers. Authorities said Sept. 13 that they had detained at least 13 villagers over their suspected role in the protests.