Photos: Boston stands with Ürümqi, hundreds gather for candlelight vigil honoring fire victims

By Arthur Mansavage, Photography Editor & Audience Development Editor

Last Friday, hundreds of people gathered at the Boston Chinatown gate to honor the victims of the Ürümqi apartment fire, which left 10 dead after a delayed emergency response. At the event, there was a candlelight vigil honoring the victims with flowers and signs. After a moment of silence, and singing some songs, speakers spoke out against China’s current COVID-19 policies.

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  • Flowers, candles, and signs honoring Ürümqi fire victims surround a sign that reads “Free Xinjiang Free China.”

  • A person kneels while lighting a candle for the candlelight vigil.

  • Hundreds gather around a speaker at the candlelight vigil.

  • A sign written in Chinese with English translation rest on a post under the Chinatown gate with a singular candle lit in front of it. The sign reads “S Ürümqi Rd. (M).”

  • Two people singing in a crowd of hundreds hold a page of song lyrics for the songs “Do You Hear The People Sing” and “Blowing In The Wind”.

  • A bundle of flowers and glowing candles sit in front of poster boards in Chinese with English translation. The poster boards give information about the rigid COVID-19 policies china currently has in place.

  • A person speaks into a microphone in front of hundreds of people.

  • A sign in Chinese with English translation being held up by a protester reads “Our demands of the Chinese Communist Party: 1. Allow public vigils 2. End Zero-COVID policy 3. Release activists 4. Protect the human rights of Chinese citizens.”

  • A crowd of protesters kneels during a moment of silence honoring the lives lost during the Ürümqi fire.

  • Two protesters hold up signs in Chinese in a crowd of hundreds of people.

  • A candlelight vigil of flowers, signs, and candles honoring the lives lost in the Ürümqi fire fills the sidewalk next to hundreds of protestors.