Large anti-Japan demonstrations took place Saturday afternoon in the cities of Xi'an, Chengdu and Zhengzhou; reportedly organized by university groups over the Internet through QQ and other social networking sites [zh], the protests have taken many [zh] by surprise. They come on the same day as an anti-Chinese protest was held in Tokyo, photos from which can be seen here.
[Update: China Media Project‘s David Bandurski has posted on the protests here. See update 2 below]
A large number of photos and tweets have come out of the protests, yet explanation as to what spurred them remains to be seen, however a Xinhua report that came out soon after protests began references the recent flare-up of the ongoing dispute between the two countries over the Diaoyu islands. Despite having apparently been organized online, few blog posts regarding the motivation behind the demonstrations can currently be found, and even posts about related posts being deleted are being deleted.
Anybody know what sparked today's protests?
From Twitter around 5pm today, in Chengdu:
@carlwang87: 就是成都香槟广场这，除了一个料理店被砸，还有一个打日本牌子的餐馆被砸，游行的起点也是这 他们转了一圈，回来把这砸了
Twitter user Henry Hu, who has uploaded to Flickr a large number of photos from the Chengdu protest, has tweeted a statement from the Chengdu city government which says that students from all major universities in the city were part of the protest. Among Hu's photos is one reportedly from the scene of the Zhengzhou protest:
From Xi'an, just between 5 and 6 pm:
A photo on this BBS post shows two police cars leading the Xi'an demonstration:
See here for the latest Tweets regarding today's demonstrations.
And YouTube user luofeng0202 has uploaded video:
On Monday afternoon, yet another protest took place in Wuhan, in Hubei province. Among those live-tweeting it are Zhou Jian and @hugh19871210 who put the number of protesters in the low hundreds and police at over a thousand.