Note: This article may contain commentary reflecting the author's opinion.

A deadly fire on Thursday killed ten people and injured nine in the city of Urumqi, the capital of the Xinjiang region in China, the victims of the fire were trapped inside their building which had been locked down for over 100 days according to reports. Within days of the fire, major protests against COVID lockdowns, the Chinese Communist Party, and CCP leader Xi Jinping erupted in dozens of cities across the country Saturday and Sunday.

Urumqi, Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Nanjing, and Wuhan, became scenes of massive protests that saw people tearing down barricades and taking to the streets battling police and CCP officials. Remarkably, according to CNN, these protestors chanted for political freedom and demanded that Xi and the Communist government “step down.”

Human Events’ Jack Posobiec posted a video to Twitter that allegedly shows the fire, he described the video “There are videos of the screams of the families burning in that building in Urumqi. This is the spark that lit the fuse of the protests across China ‘Open the doors! Open the doors! Save us!’ Even children were killed”

Maria Repnikova, an Associate Professor at Georgia State University specializing in Chinese politics and media told CNN, “This is a different type of protest from the more localized protests we have seen recurring over the past two decades that tend to focus their claims and demands on local officials and on very targeted societal and economic issues,” she said.

She added that the protesters included “the sharper expression of political grievances alongside with concerns about Covid-19 lockdowns.”

Tom MacKenzie of BloombergTV shared video from Beijing’s liangmaqiao,

During the protests, angered Chinese people held up a blank piece of paper according to BBC News as a symbol of the lack of free speech in the nation. The paper represents the act of speaking out without explicitly saying anything.

Joyce Karam, Senior US Correspondent at The National and Adjunct Professor at George Washington University shared video from near the Foxconn iPhone plant in Zhengzhou of protestors tearing down barricades.

BBC’s Kerry Allen reported that the CCP’s censorship machine “is going into overdrive,” in an attempt to quell the unrest into Monday.

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A heavy police presence in Beijing and other major cities Monday afternoon, wide-scale protests failed to materialize, although limited protests emerged in Hong Kong according to Bloomberg News.