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China Daily Website

Cases must be investigated

Updated: 2013-07-24 20:40

The case of a watermelon vendor beaten to death must be fully investigated, said an article in Beijing News (excerpts below).

On July 19, two days after the vendor's death, news came that the local government had already paid 897,000 yuan ($146,100) in compensation. According to the family of the victim, the government asked them to bury the victim no later than June 19, or compensation would be cut by 100,000 yuan every day.

Of course the victim and his family should be compensated. However, such compensation should follow legal procedures and standards. The abnormally high efficiency of the local government in paying the money, together with their requirement to bury the victim, raise doubts that they are only trying to cover up rather than investigate.

That is also the logic of many local governments facing similar incidents: they always think money can silence victims and their families, thus maintaining "stability" while justice is often ignored.

But "stability" maintained this way can never last long. Without justice ordinary people will never trust local government anymore.

The only way of preventing such incidents happening again is to investigate past incidents thoroughly.