The Chinese government has proposed new rules on seizing properties for redevelopment aimed at curbing forced evictions and demolition against the will of residents.
Under the new guidelines proposed by China's State Council, authorities would not be able to use violence or intimidation, such as cutting water or heat, to force residents to relocate.
Developers would have to get permission from the majority of residents before attempting mass evictions.
The draft proposal also calls for compensation paid for seized property to be above its market value.
Property seizures have caused widespread and often violent protests in China, where an economic boom has spurred development.
People facing removal from their land or home to make room for new construction have long complained they get too little or no compensation.
Last year, a man and a woman set themselves on fire in two incidents to protest demolition. The man survived, but the woman died from injuries.
Their cases prompted five scholars from China's renowned Peking University to call for the abolition of a statute that allows local officials to seize land against the residents' will.
Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.