Authorities in Sichuan have clamped down on security across areas affected by last year’s earthquake as a series of official events commemorating the first anniversary of the disaster begins today, the South China Morning Post reported. Yingxiu, the epicentre of the May 12 earthquake, has been closed off ahead of an official memorial ceremony today. Foreign media have complained of being denied access to quake-affected areas. The increased security is reportedly aimed in part at stopping protests planned by parents who lost their children in the earthquake. Several parents whose children died when their schools collapsed told the paper that they had been followed by police and warned against going ahead with their protests. President Hu Jintao and Vice-Premier Li Keqiang are expected to attend the ceremony, which will be broadcast live on state television and major news portals this afternoon, state media said.
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