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    Reporters Without Borders said in it’s 2005 special report titled “Xinhua: the world’s biggest propaganda agency”, that “Xinhua remains the voice of the sole party”, “particularly during the SARS epidemic, Xinhua has for last few months been putting out news reports embarrassing to the government, but they are designed to fool the international community, since they are not published in Chinese.”
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China’s repression continues after Beijing Olympics, media and dissidents fight back (1)

Posted by Author on February 7, 2009

Reporters Without Borders, 5 February 2009 –

Six months after the Beijing Olympics began on 8 August 2008, Reporters Without Borders urges the Chinese authorities to release all the free speech activists and other citizens still being held in connection with the games. Foreign journalists continue to enjoy the freer regulations introduced for the Olympics (even if they have not been applied in Tibet), but at least 17 Chinese journalists, bloggers and free speech activists have been arrested since the games ended.

“For hundreds of Chinese, the Olympic legacy is measured in years in prison, administrative sanctions or police surveillance,” Reporters Without Borders said. “This is degrading for the Olympic movement, but the authorities still have a chance to change the situation by freeing those who were arrested for expressing their views in connection with the games.”

The press freedom organisation added: “It is also deplorable that improved access to websites, one of the few benefits derived from the Olympic Games, has been rolled back. It is clear that the Olympic human rights legacy promised by the government and the International Olympic Committee is extremely meagre.”

French President Nicolas Sarkozy attended the opening ceremony of the games and submitted a list of political prisoners whose release he requested on the European Union’s behalf. None of them has been freed. Sarkozy’s list was headed by Hu Jia (胡佳), who has been held for more than a year and is in poor health. The authorities continue to refer to him as a “criminal,” although he was awarded the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize. Huang Qi (黄琦), who was arrested in June 2008 for writing about the victims of the previous month’s earthquake in Sichuan, is still awaiting trial and his family still have not been allowed to see him.

Writer and lawyer Yang Maodong (杨茂东) continues to be mistreated in the southern province of Guangdong. Fellow lawyer Chen Guangcheng (陈光诚), who has had acute diarrhoea for months, was denied an early release on medical grounds by the authorities in Shandong last month.

Yang Chunlin (杨春林), one of the initiator of the “We want human rights not Olympic Games” campaign, is still detained in the north-eastern province of Heilongjiang, where he has to work 14 hours a day in a prison factory. Tibetan monk Tenzin Delek continues to be held in Sichuan province, serving a life sentence on a charge of “inciting separatism.”

The failure of the European Union’s attempts to get China to release prisoners of conscience should induce the EU to adopt a new strategy. Reporters Without Borders calls for repeated joint requests for their release, requests that are not just made in the course of the discreet meetings that are taking place as part of the EU-China dialogue on human rights…….  (to be cont’d)

Repression continues six months after Beijing Olympics opening ceremony, but media and dissidents fight back, The Reporters Without Borders

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