China village protest leader made local party head

AP News
Posted: Jan 15, 2012 10:46 PM

A man who led mass protests over a land dispute that drove out local officials and police from a village in southern China has been appointed the village's new chief.

December's protests in Wukan village ended after provincial officials intervened and gave in to the protesters' key demands. It was a rare compromise by the Chinese government, which often suppresses rural protests.

Wukan villager Huang Hancan said Monday that protest leader Lin Zulian was appointed chief of the village's Communist Party committee on Sunday.

Huang says about 1,000 villagers gathered at a public square and stood and cheered when the appointment was announced.

Huang says Lin and other leaders will help organize elections for a new village committee.