Shanghai Mourns Victims of High-Rise Fire

Thousands of Shanghai residents gathered on Sunday to mourn the victims of last week’s fire at Jiaozhou Road. Adam Minter has a thoughtful post on the mourning procession (as well as links for further reading) at Shanghai Scrap; Marta Cooper’s blog . . . in Shanghai has photos from the assembly. At the Wall Street Journal’s China Real Time Report, watch a short video about Sunday’s gathering. On Twitter, users have been marking their thoughts on the fire and its aftermath with the hashtag #jiaozhoulu.

Below, comments on Sunday’s mourning procession from China Beatnik Sheila Melvin:

The Chinese micro-blogging universe is today filled with images of Shanghainese gathered outside the charred residential building in which more than 50 people died. Many of those gathered have come to lay flowers and hang banners; indeed, photos show that the entire area is blanketed with bouquets and the gatherings are clearly as much protest as mourning. Lots of blogs include images of mourners holding pictures of the dead as they walk past Shanghai Expo posters that proclaim “Better City, Better Life.” Bloggers are asking why there is still no official list of the dead; making all manner of comparisons to the “success” of the Expo and the failure implicit in this fire; and offering admiration to ordinary Shanghainese for coming out publicly to mourn. I think this is going to end up involving the arrest of a lot more than a few unlicensed welders. For those who are interested, China Daily ran what for it is a pretty thorough investigative story on the disaster and the widespread belief that its true cause is government corruption.

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