June 20, 2011 / 7:47 AM / 8 years ago

Chinese police offer residency for riot tip-offs

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Police in the southern Chinese city of Zengcheng are offering residency to migrant workers who provide tip-offs leading to the arrest of rioters involved in one of the worst outbreaks of civil unrest in export-oriented Guangdong province in years.

In a public notice published in the Zeng Cheng Daily on Sunday, the police department offered a cash reward of 5,000 to 10,000 yuan (478-957 pounds) in exchange for tip-offs, and said it may grant “righteous good citizen” titles. Residency of Zengcheng and titles such as “excellent migrant worker” would be awarded to migrant worker informants, it said.

Zengcheng police were not immediately available for comment and the police hotlines designated for tip-offs were busy.

Last week, police in southern China arrested 19 people in connection with the rioting over several days more than a week ago. A heavy police presence remained on the streets of Zengcheng city, a major denin and garments hub.

The riots, sparked after the abuse of a pregnant migrant street hawker, flared over three days and saw rampaging mobs smash and burn government offices, pelt police with stones and bottles and overturn scores of vehicles.

Although China’s 150 million or so rural migrant workers have gained better wages and treatment in recent years, the gap between them and established urban residents remains wide, fuelling anger about discrimination and ill-treatment.

($1 = 6.471 Chinese yuan)

Reporting by Donny Kwok; Editing by Chris Lewis and Alex Richardson

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