Sui­cides not tied to new cre­ma­tion rules

China Daily (Canada) - - NEWSCAPSULE -

There was no di­rect re­la­tion­ship be­tween the al­leged sui­cides of sev­eral el­derly ru­ral res­i­dents in An­qing, An­hui prov­ince and new burial rules that re­quire cre­ma­tion, au­thor­i­ties said.

The Ori­en­tal Morn­ing Post in Shang­hai re­ported that six el­derly people com­mit­ted sui­cide so their bod­ies could be buried legally in coffins.

Start­ing June 1, all corpses must be cre­mated, ac­cord­ing to a no­tice from the An­qing govern­ment on March 25.

China has been en­cour­ag­ing cre­ma­tion since the 1950s out of con­cern for land use, among other things. The na­tional cre­ma­tion rate reached nearly 50 per­cent in 2012.

The An­qing govern­ment an­nounced fu­neral re­forms in 1994 and 2006, but they failed be­cause of tepid sup­port from res­i­dents.

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