ideo of an Egyptian student in China shouting at and shoving a traffic police officer hit the Chinese internet last week, causing netizens to cry foul once again about “foreigner privilege” in their country.
The clip, filmed at an intersection in the Fujian city of Fuzhou on July 9, shows the Egyptian man getting up in the officer’s face, pushing him, and repeatedly shouting in Chinese “give me!” Meanwhile, a Chinese woman tries to right a scooter that is laying in the middle of the intersection.
The officer makes no move to retaliate and flees from the angry foreigner until backup arrives.
From these few clues, anyone who has spent some time driving in China can likely infer what happened: The Egyptian man was stopped at the intersection for illegally carrying a passenger on the back of his scooter… and he did not take it well.
The following day, Fuzhou police released a statement, saying that the foreigner had been released after being “criticized” and writing a statement of remorse. They later added that his punishment was not harsher because he was a student.
These statements have angered net users who say that the man got off with far too light a punishment, arguing that any Chinese individual who acted in a similar manner would get in much more trouble, even if they were a student.
Others have speculated about what would happen if something like this occurred in another country —say, America. “If this happened in the US, he would have been shot,” reads one comment.
Later, the Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University identified the man as an Egyptian student studying at their school named “Younes,” adding that he had been placed on disciplinary probation for the time being.