According to footage posted on social media, large protests by workers took place at the Foxconn factory in Zhengzhou on Wednesday.
Mass protests erupted Wednesday at the world’s largest iPhone manufacturing plant in China, owned by Taiwanese subcontractor Foxconn, according to videos and photos posted on social media Weibo and Twitter.
Footage shows a crowd of day laborers marching down the street, some in white full-body suits, confronting riot police in a row. The factory is located in Zhengzhou, central Henan province.
An excerpt from a video broadcast live shows that, during the night, dozens of workers chanted “Let’s defend our rights!” A police vehicle with police lines and flashing lights. In other footage, a worker can be seen placing a metal barrier on the ground, with the video’s author saying, “They’re charging!” and “tear smoke bombs!”
A photo taken during the day shows the charred remains of a portal, burned at night.
The hashtag #RiotsFoxconn was censored on Chinese social media Wednesday afternoon. There were, however, some posts online mentioning the protests.
Foxconn is a large conglomerate that assembles electronic products for many international brands. The Taiwanese company, a key subcontractor to Apple, has faced a surge in Covid-19 cases in recent months at its largest site in Zhengzhou, the world’s largest iPhone factory.
More than 200,000 people work at the complex and usually stay on site. Foxconn decided to limit the site to inside workers. But hundreds of panicked workers later left.
The Taiwanese conglomerate is China’s largest private sector employer, employing more than one million workers in about 30 factories and research institutes across the country. Foxconn did not immediately respond to AFP’s request for comment.