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    2.Officially Sanctioned Crime in China, He Qinglian
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    Losing the New China, Ethan Gutmann
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    Nine Commentaries on The Communist Party, the Epochtimes
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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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Archive for the ‘Xinjiang’ Category

China’s Dissident Lawyer Gao Zhisheng Released From Prison But Under Close Surveillance

Posted by Author on August 7, 2014


Authorities at remote Shaya Prison in China’s northwestern region of Xinjiang on Thursday released prominent dissident and rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng at the end of a jail term of nearly three years. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, Gao Zhisheng, Human Rights, Lawyer, NW China, People, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China’s Dissident Lawyer Gao Zhisheng Released From Prison But Under Close Surveillance

Two More House Churches Raided by Police in China’s Xinjiang Region

Posted by Author on August 1, 2013


China Aid has learned of two more police raids on house churches in Xinjiang. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, Freedom of Belief, Human Rights, NW China, Politics, Religion, Social, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Two More House Churches Raided by Police in China’s Xinjiang Region

13 American scholars barred from traveling to China for their book on Xinjiang

Posted by Author on August 20, 2011


(washingtonpost)- Thirteen American scholars say they have been barred from traveling to China because of a book they wrote, an incident that raises awkward questions about academic freedom at a time of unprecedented collaboration between U.S. and Chinese universities.

The academics have taken to calling themselves the Xin­jiang 13 to emphasize their shared misfortune. Seven years ago, they assembled a book about Xinjiang, a vast region of western China that has a large Muslim population and an occasionally violent separatist movement.

They say their book triggered a backlash from the Chinese government because of its sensitive topic. Contributors have repeatedly been refused visas, thwarted from returning to the region that is the focus of their careers. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in censorship, China, Human Rights, News, NW China, People, Politics, USA, World, writer, Xinjiang | Comments Off on 13 American scholars barred from traveling to China for their book on Xinjiang

Senior Chinese reporter dies 10 days after being beaten, may related to his reports critical of the local officials, colleagues believe

Posted by Author on December 28, 2010


Committee to Protect Journalists-

New York, December 28, 2010–The death of Sun Hongjie, a senior reporter at the Northern Xinjiang Morning Post, must be fully investigated by regional authorities in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region and by central authorities in Beijing, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Sun died in a hospital in Kuitun today, 10 days after being beaten by several men at a construction site, international news reports said.

At least six young men attacked Sun at the Kuitin construction site, where the reporter had gone to meet a source, according to international news reports. Authorities dismissed journalism-related motives last week, saying the attack stemmed from an online dispute involving a social media acquaintance of Sun. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, Freedom of Speech, Human Rights, Journalist, Law, Media, News, NW China, People, Social, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Senior Chinese reporter dies 10 days after being beaten, may related to his reports critical of the local officials, colleagues believe

Nearly 100 children hurt in northwest China school stampede

Posted by Author on November 29, 2010


AFP, Nov. 29, 2010 –

BEIJING — Nearly 100 children were hurt in a stampede Monday at a primary school in China’s far-western Xinjiang region but no deaths have been reported, state media reported.

The accident occurred in the city of Aksu as school children were rushing outside to a playground around lunchtime when some students in the lead tripped and fell, Xinhua news agency said, quoting an unnamed city official. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, Education, News, NW China, People, Social, Student, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Nearly 100 children hurt in northwest China school stampede

Explosion attack of police kills 7, in Xijiang, Northwest China

Posted by Author on August 19, 2010


By Keith B. Richburg, Washington Post Foreign Service, Thursday, August 19, 2010 –

BEIJING
— An attacker riding a three-wheeled vehicle attacked a contingent of security volunteers Thursday in Aksu city, in China’s restive western region of Xinjiang, killing seven people and wounding 14 others in the first such incident since bloody ethnic rioting shook the area a year ago.

A statement posted late Thursday on the Web site of the autonomous Xinjiang regional government said the volunteers were on patrol and standing in a line when the attacker struck. The statement said five security force members died at the scene, and two others died later in a local hospital.

The attack occurred in Yoganqi township, on the outskirts of Aksu city, on the highway linking Urumqi, the Xinjiang capital, to Kashgar in the west, the statement said. ……(more details from The Washington Post)

Posted in Bombing, China, Incident, News, NW China, People, Police, Social, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Explosion attack of police kills 7, in Xijiang, Northwest China

Uyghur journalist and website editor sentenced to 15 years in jail for criticising China

Posted by Author on July 24, 2010


Reporters Without Borders, July 24, 2010-

Reporters Without Borders said it was outraged at the harshness of a 15-year prison sentence handed down today to journalist Gheyret Niyaz by a court in Urumqi, in Xinjiang province.

He was arrested in October 2009 following ethnic unrest in Xinjiang in July 2009 and found guilty of “threatening national security” after criticising Chinese official policy towards the Uyghurs, sending news about the riots to foreign journalists and contributing to a website accused of inciting violence.

“We are utterly astonished at the outcome of this trial,” the worldwide press freedom organisation said. “Gheyret Niyaz did indeed make some criticism of Chinese policy in his region, but he is neither a criminal nor a dissident. He is seen by Uyghurs based abroad as supporting China’s administration of Xinjiang and even shares some of the Chinese government’s views of the summer 2009 unrest.

“In giving him such a heavy sentence and imprisoning other journalists and netizens whose sole crime is to have spoken about these events, the Chinese authorities are not encouraging a negotiated solution. On the contrary, this shocking sentence shows that the authorities put control of news above the reconciliation process. Prisoners of opinion should be released and the verdict against Gheyret Niyaz quashed on appeal”, the organisation added.

Niyaz gave an interview to Hong Kong magazine Yazhou Zhoukan (www.yzzk.com), in July 2009 in which he supported the official version of events that implicated external agents in the rioting, saying that the Islamic Liberation Party, Hizb-ut-Tahrir al Islami, was behind them. He also claimed to have warned the authorities that things were getting out of hand. In the same article he raised the issue of economic inequalities in Xinjiang, as well as some aspects of the struggle against “separatism”.

He also contributed to the website Uighurbiz.cn, a bilingual forum on Uyghur life and culture that the government accused of inciting violence by posting news about clashes between Uyghurs and Han Chinese in another region of the country……. (more details from Reporters Without Borders)

Posted in China, Freedom of Speech, Human Rights, Journalist, Law, News, NW China, People, Politics, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Uyghur journalist and website editor sentenced to 15 years in jail for criticising China

China police detain 13 Uyghur Flood Rescuers

Posted by Author on June 18, 2010


Radio Free Asia, 2010-06-18 –

HONG KONG— Authorities near the Silk Road city of Kashgar have detained around a dozen ethnic Uyghurs after they organized themselves to help local residents hit by huge rainstorms and massive flash flooding, overseas groups and officials said.

“We are all engaged in flood relief work,” said a police officer who answered the phone at Yengisar [in Chinese, Yingjisha] county’s Uchar [in Chinese, Wuqia] police station in the Kashgar region of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR).

He said local officials had already implemented flood prevention measures in case the floods came back.

But he declined to comment on the reported detentions of 13 Uyghurs for disturbing public order.

“I can’t answer that question,” the officer said.

“Can you get your information from the Internet—we are very busy here,” he said.

An employee who answered the phone at the Wuqia village credit union said the flooding had been going on for three days, and was still causing disruption for local residents, some of whom had been made homeless.

“There was some very heavy rain here,” she said.

“And 330 people had their homes damaged or destroyed.”

Flash flooding

“We can lend them up to a maximum of 20,000 yuan. Some people have asked for 5,000 yuan, so we have made some loans of 5,000 yuan.”

According to official media, heavy flash flooding in Yengisar county caused flooding in villages No. 3, 4, 5, and 6 lasting longer than three hours in a region that had no recorded floods for at least a century, knocking out water supplies, communications, and transportation links.

A large number of houses collapsed, reports said.

Dilxat Raxit, spokesman for the Munich-based World Uyghur Congress, said 13 Uyghur residents had been detained on public order charges after local officials said their assistance efforts had too strong a religious flavor.

“They were detained by the local public security department, and the local authorities said they were disturbing public order,” Raxit said.

“The people were organizing themselves to help people out after the floods, and relaying information of the flood situation everywhere. The government said they were disturbing the peace.”

He said residents had begun to organize themselves in the face of a slow response to the disaster from local officials……(more details from Radio Free Asia)

Posted in China, disaster, ethnic, Flood, Human Rights, News, NW China, People, Politics, Social, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China police detain 13 Uyghur Flood Rescuers

China’s Missing Human Rights Lawyer Gao Zhisheng

Posted by Author on March 19, 2010


By JEROME A. COHEN and BETH SCHWANKE, Via New York Times, March 18, 2010 –

Peter Gao is six and wants to be an astronaut. If you ask him why, he’ll explain that he wanted to be a lawyer, but the Chinese government “really hates lawyers.” He’s pretty sure that it likes astronauts.

The Chinese government “disappeared” Peter’s father, Gao Zhisheng, on Feb. 4, 2009. According to various Chinese officials over the past year, Mr. Gao is, “in Beijing,” “gone missing,” “where he should be,” “working in Urumqi,” the capital of China’s northwestern Xinjiang Province, and now “sentenced for subversion.”

We call on the Chinese government to stop stalling and produce Gao Zhisheng: a literal case of habeas corpus.

Mr. Gao’s efforts as one of China’s leading human rights lawyers made his latest detention inevitable. In 2006, after representing individuals persecuted by the government for their religious beliefs, Mr. Gao was convicted of “inciting subversion” and began serving a suspended sentence under 24-hour police surveillance — and harassment.

In 2007, after he wrote an open letter to the U.S. Congress detailing human rights violations in China, authorities again detained and tortured him.

Mr. Gao’s publicly released account of this torture, which included toothpicks in his genitals and electric shocks, ends with the admonition of authorities not to tell anyone of his torture — or be killed.

Mr. Gao’s extraordinary journey to become “China’s conscience” and a recurring nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize began in his family’s traditional home. After time as a coal miner and in the People’s Liberation Army, Mr. Gao took his legal exams without the benefit of university. The government later named him one of China’s 10 best lawyers. And, despite the risks, he began defending those people the government persecutes.

Perhaps even more extraordinary is the Chinese government’s failure to officially acknowledge Mr. Gao’s detention. It’s unmistakable that Beijing is increasing its crackdown on political dissidents; however, the Chinese government’s complete abandonment of even the pretext of the rule of law with regards to Mr. Gao’s detention is unprecedented. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Beijing, China, Gao Zhisheng, Human Rights, Law, Lawyer, News, NW China, People, Politics, Shandong, Social, Torture, USA, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China’s Missing Human Rights Lawyer Gao Zhisheng

China adds to confusion over missing rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng

Posted by Author on March 16, 2010


DPA Via earthtimes.org, Mar. 16, 2010-

Beijing – China on Tuesday said it had sentenced a leading rights lawyer to three years in prison but it was apparently referring to a sentence passed in 2006, adding to the confusion since the lawyer disappeared 13 months ago. “What I can tell you now is that Gao Zhisheng was sentenced to three years imprisonment suspended for five years for inciting and subverting state power,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told reporters.

Qin declined to elaborate on his statement or say if he was announcing a new sentence against Gao, referring questions to “judicial authorities.”

China had tried to silence Gao by passing a three-year suspended prison sentence for subversion at a closed trial in December 2006.

Gao, 44, who was nominated for the 2008 Nobel Peace Prize, was detained by police again in February 2009, and relatives and supporters said they have not seen him since then.

Qin’s comment is the latest in a series of vague and sometimes bizarre statements on Gao’s whereabouts by Chinese officials.

Last month, a Chinese embassy official in Washington told the US-based Dui Hua Foundation that Gao was “working” in Urumqi, the capital of China’s far western region of Xinjiang, and “has been in contact with his wife and relatives in China.”

Gao’s wife, Geng He, who lives in exile in the United States, later denied that she had any recent contact with Gao.

His brother, Gao Zhiyi, was told by a Beijing police officer who detained the lawyer that he “got lost and went missing while out on a walk” on September 25, US-based China Aid and other groups reported in January.

Asked about that report in mid-January, Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu said Gao was “where he should be” but declined to elaborate.

In another statement when asked about Gao’s whereabouts in February, Ma said, “I don’t know where he is. China has 1.3 billion people.”

Gao’s last contact with his brother was a telephone call in early September, when he was only able to say, “I’m OK,” before the line went dead, China Aid said.

Geng and the couple’s two children made a dramatic escape from close police surveillance and arrived in the United States in January 2009 after travelling overland from China to Thailand.

Gao is a self-taught lawyer who built a reputation as a stout defender of people who suffered injustices at the hands of Chinese government officials and the police.

The government closed his Beijing-based Shengzhi law firm in 2005 after he called via the internet for an end to the persecution of members of the Falun Gong spiritual movement who were sent to a re-education camp.

Earthtimes.org

Posted in Beijing, China, Gao Zhisheng, Human Rights, Law, Lawyer, News, NW China, People, Politics, Social, UK, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China adds to confusion over missing rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng

Dispelling the Lies: ChinaAid Calls for the Truth about Gao Zhisheng

Posted by Author on February 16, 2010


ChinaAid, February 16, 2010 –

CHINAAID
— “This is nonsense!” Gao’s wife Geng He furiously refuted the rumor which first broke out on February 12, 2010. In response to the San Francisco-based think tank Dui Hua Foundation’s request for information about Gao Zhisheng, the Chinese Embassy in Washington, D.C. said that Gao Zhisheng was alive, working happily in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, more than 1,800 km from Beijing. Around the same time, a Chinese informant then posted photos of Gao Zhisheng online in a Chinese report, claiming he worked in the same company as Gao Zhisheng. He said that Gao was a talkative, even funny man, who had allegedly become a successful operational manager, talking about his wife and family and even “whistling a happy tune” daily.

On February 14th, the story broke to western media, leading to speculation as to whether the reports were valid. One American legal expert Chinese government’s disclosure a “step in the right direction,” but has called the Chinese government’s treatment of Gao’s case highly irregular. Gao’s wife, Geng He has denounced the claim as false, greatly frustrated by the lack of communication and deception. Neither she nor Gao’s brother or sister have been able to contact him, much less acquire “useful information” about his whereabouts and condition.

On February 15th, China Free Press agency Canyu released an article exposing the fake photos and highlighting an interview with Geng He. Tell-tale marks of tampering in the photos include the discrepancy of the time of year, based on Gao wearing a summer shirt while sitting beside a Uyghur man in a winter jacket, as well as striking similarities between the images allegedly taken of Gao very recently, and a set of photos taken before his arrest and torture in 2007. (See the Canyu report)

President of ChinaAid Bob Fu anticipates a more sinister angle to the false reports: “With no evidence to suggest otherwise, this appears to be a ploy by the Chinese government to confuse people and cover up the truth. By telling reporters and advocacy organizations that Gao is in Xinjiang, it will keep them from hunting around Beijing for answers. The Chinese government is just playing games now.”

There has also been evidence to suggest that Gao’s wife and children continue to be held under close surveillance by the Chinese spy network while living in the United States. In the Chinese informant’s report, he referred to Gao’s son accidentally eating a pesticide pallet, and becoming ill. No reports of the event had been recorded prior to that, and Geng He herself only mentioned it in a phone call conversation some months ago. Other details of Gao’s daughter’s recent hospitalization and emotional troubles indicate the informant had access to inside information, which could only be obtained by close monitoring of the family.

The Gao family is not alone. One recent report, released on February 9, 2010, used the stated number of  informants in Kailu County, Inner Mongolia, to estimate the number of Chinese spies at nearly 3% of the Chinese population, a low estimate considering other regions like Xinjiang and Beijing have higher security threats. It has been a stated goal of the Chinese government to use punishment as a preventative measure, relying on paid and unpaid informants to provide timely inside information to preserve stability. (See the report at Telegraph.co.uk).

For the Gao family, the danger is very real. Gao Zhisheng has still made no personal contact with them, and the Chinese government continues to withhold verifiable information about his condition and whereabouts.

ChinaAid urges you to act now. Call on the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to press the Chinese government for the truth. Urge your U.S. Congressman or local representative to denounce the punishment of those who disagree with the Chinese government.

We question the motives of the Chinese government, and urge them to contact Gao’s family directly and to make his information public. We call on the Chinese government to disclose verifiable information about Gao Zhisheng, and to cease the intentional misdirection of those who seek the truth.

For more ways to get involved, visit www.FreeGao.com

China Aid

Posted in China, Gao Zhisheng, Human Rights, Law, Lawyer, Life, News, NW China, People, Politics, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Dispelling the Lies: ChinaAid Calls for the Truth about Gao Zhisheng

Chinese Embassy Says Missing Lawyer Gao Zhisheng is in Xin Jiang

Posted by Author on February 14, 2010


BEIJING (Reuters) – The Chinese embassy in Washington has said the country’s best known activist lawyer, missing for a year after being taken from his home, is working in the western city of Urumqi, a U.S.-based rights group said late on Saturday.

Gao, a Christian lawyer who helped defend members of China’s banned Falun Gong spiritual group, was abducted from his relative’s home in Shanxi province on Feb 4, 2009. Chinese authorities have not provided consistent information on his fate.

“On Feb 12, the Chinese Embassy in Washington DC informed John Kamm, executive director of The Dui Hua Foundation, that Mr. Gao Zhisheng is working in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, and that he has been in contact with his wife and relatives in China,” said the foundation, which campaigns for the rights of prisoners.

At the time of Gao’s disappearance, his wife and children had already escaped from their home, ultimately arriving in Bangkok where they applied for asylum to the United States.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu in January told reporters Gao was “where he is supposed to be,” but the following week said he did not know Gao’s whereabouts.

Gao’s family had feared he was dead, after a cryptic comment from police that he had “lost his way and gone missing” in September.

“This really is a case that calls for ‘habeas corpus’,” said Jerome Cohen, an expert on Chinese legal issues who is active in pressing Gao’s case.

Gao was sentenced to four years in jail for subversion in 2006 but won a good behavior reprieve. He has, however, since been under constant police watch and periods of secretive detention, his wife, Geng He, told Reuters after her escape.

Dui Hua said it was trying confirm the information on Gao’s whereabouts, adding that Gao’s wife had had no contact from him.

Gao had previously published instances when he was tortured while in detention. Self-educated, he had grown disenchanted with the Chinese system while representing other activist lawyers, Falun Gong practitioners and underground Christians.

In 2005, he wrote an open letter to China’s president and premier, calling for an end to the persecution of Falun Gong, which China regards as a dangerous cult.

The Reuters

Posted in China, Gao Zhisheng, Human Rights, Law, Lawyer, News, NW China, People, Politics, World, Xinjiang | 1 Comment »

Did missile test spark China UFO reports?

Posted by Author on January 15, 2010


By James Oberg, NBC News space analyst, Special to MSNBC, Jan. 15, 2010-

In an ironic encore, yet another secret military missile test has sparked widespread UFO reports from surprised ground witnesses.

On Dec. 9, a Russian Bulava missile was launched from a submarine within sight of northern Norway, resulting in a spectacular spiral display and a spate of UFO sightings.

This week’s UFO reports apparently were sparked by a Chinese missile that was fired to intercept another missile in flight, for the first time in the nation’s history.

Witnesses in China’s inland provinces of Xinjiang and Gansu weren’t as well equipped with cameras as last month’s Norwegian witnesses were, so the only images reaching the West merely show fuzzy-colored clouds and streaks. The military secrecy surrounding China’s missile test is so tight that Beijing officials seem to be at a loss as to how to respond to the reports……. (more details from MSNBC)

Posted in China, military, News, NW China, Technology, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Did missile test spark China UFO reports?

14 Chinese Christians Detained and Interrogated in Xinjiang, Northwest China

Posted by Author on January 8, 2010


ChinaAid, January 8, 2009 –

XINJIANG— At 5:00 PM, (Beijing time) officers from the Public Security military office Nong Wu Shi in the Aksu Region raided the home of a Han Chinese house church Christian, disrupting the worship gathering and seizing 14 believers. The Han Chinese Christians were escorted by the police to the local Aksu police station, where they were detained for over 12 hours. They each faced interrogation for allegedly conducting an “illegal religious gathering.”

In the morning of January 8th (Beijing time), 11 of the 14 detained Christians were released, leaving house church leaders Yang Tianlu, He Sujin, and Sujin’s son, He Guangyuan, in detention. Yang Tianlu had been previously arrested, tortured, and interrogated along with 30 other house church leaders in Xinjiang for meeting with four American missionaries two years ago, in April, 2007……. (more details from China Aid)

Posted in China, Christianity, Human Rights, Law, News, NW China, People, Politics, Religion, Religious, Social, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on 14 Chinese Christians Detained and Interrogated in Xinjiang, Northwest China

Hasty executions in China highlight unfair Xinjiang trials

Posted by Author on November 10, 2009


Amnesty International, 10 November 2009-

Chinese authorities must ensure all individuals charged with offences during the July riots in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR) receive a fair trail and do not face the death penalty, Amnesty International said on Tuesday.

The China Daily reported on Tuesday that the authorities prosecuted another 20 suspects on Monday, for offences ranging from murder, arson and robbery linked to the riots.

The trial follows the execution of eight Uighurs and one Han Chinese individual, announced by the authorities on Monday. The announcement did not say when the nine were executed but reported that it was after the Supreme People’s Court reviewed and approved the sentences.

“In hastily executing these individuals after unfair trials, the Chinese authorities are perpetuating some of the very injustices that helped trigger the outburst of violence in the first place,” said Roseann Rife, deputy director of Amnesty International’s Asia-Pacific programme.

The nine were among 21 individuals tried and sentenced in October in relation to the July unrest. Another three received suspended death sentences while the rest were sentenced to lengthy prison terms. Their trials lasted less than a day. Their sentences were upheld by the XUAR Higher People’s Court on 30 October.

Amnesty International said it believes that statements made by Chinese officials following the unrest made it very difficult for a fair trial to be conducted. Urumqi’s Communist Party Secretary stated in a news conference in July that “brutal criminals will be sentenced to death”.

The defendants were also denied legal representation of their choice, with judicial authorities in Beijing putting pressure on human rights lawyers not to take up the cases of the accused. …… (More from Amnesty International)

Posted in China, ethnic, Law, News, NW China, People, Social, World, Xinjiang | 1 Comment »

Survey of blocked Uyghur websites shows Xinjiang still cut off from the world

Posted by Author on October 29, 2009


Reporters Without Borders, 29 October 2009 –

Reporters Without Borders has surveyed access to websites dedicated to the Uyghur community, including sites in the Uyghur language, in Mandarin and sometimes in English. These sites, operated by Uyghurs for Uyghurs, are for the most part inaccessible both to Internet users based in Xinjiang and those abroad. More than 85 per cent of the surveyed sites were blocked, censored or otherwise unreachable.

“The discrimination to which Uyghurs have been subjected for decades as regards their freedom of expression and their religious and economic freedom now applies to their Internet access as well,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Four months after the violence in Urumqi, the Chinese authorities continue to keep the province cut off from the rest of the world. We must not be duped by the illusion of normality. Most Uyghurs still cannot go online, send SMS messages or even make phone calls.”

The press freedom organisation added: “The official reason given for this blackout, that ‘terrorists used the Internet and SMS messaging,’ is unacceptable. Do the Pakistani or Afghan authorities suspend the Internet because terrorists sent email messages? No. The Chinese government seems more interested in preventing Xinjiang’s inhabitants from circulating information about the real situation in the province, especially about the crackdown after the July riots.”

Reporters Without Borders urges the authorities to restore Internet and phone connections in Xinjiang without delay. “The dozens of websites in the Uyghur language and websites about Xinjiang that have been closed must be allowed to reopen and those who edit them must have freedom of movement,” the organisation added.

Carried out in October, the survey examined around 100 Uyghur websites, portals, forums, blogs and other kinds of online platform. Various factors were considered, such as the country in which the site is based, the type of site (such as forum or blog), the type of content (such as news, politics, culture or sport), the language, and the problems encountered when the attempt was made to visit the site (such as change of address, overly long delay in opening or error message)……. (more details)

Posted in China, Freedom of Speech, Human Rights, Internet, News, NW China, People, Religious, Technology, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on Survey of blocked Uyghur websites shows Xinjiang still cut off from the world

China: Christian Minor Expelled from Xinjiang High School for His Faith

Posted by Author on October 27, 2009


China Aid,  October 26, 2009 –

XINJIANG–Second-year high school student Chen Le stated emphatically, “I would rather be forced out of school, than deny my faith.” On October 20, 2009, the High School Division of the Huashan Middle School officially expelled Chen for signing a document confirming his identity as a Christian. The Official Notice of Expulsion reads as follows:  (report from China Aid)

Posted in Children, China, Freedom of Belief, Human Rights, News, NW China, People, Politics, Religious, Social, Student, teenager, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China: Christian Minor Expelled from Xinjiang High School for His Faith

China: 43 Detainees ‘Disappeared’ After Xinjiang Protests, Recent Report Shows

Posted by Author on October 22, 2009


Human Rights Watch, October 21, 2009 –

(New York) – The Chinese government should immediately account for all detainees in its custody and allow independent investigations into the July 2009 protests in Urumqi and their aftermath, Human Rights Watch said in a new report on enforced “disappearances” released today.

The 44-page report, “‘We Are Afraid to Even Look for Them’: Enforced Disappearances in the Wake of Xinjiang’s Protests,” documents the enforced disappearances of 43 Uighur men and teenage boys who were detained by Chinese security forces in the wake of the protests.

“The cases we documented are likely just the tip of the iceberg,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “The Chinese government says it respects the rule of law, but nothing could undermine this claim more than taking people from their homes or off the street and ‘disappearing’ them – leaving their families unsure whether they are dead or alive.”

Last week, Xinjiang judicial authorities started trials of people accused of involvement in the protests. Nine men have already been sentenced to death, three others to death with a two-year reprieve, and one to life imprisonment.

Human Rights Watch research has established that on July 6-7, 2009, Chinese police, the People’s Armed Police, and the military conducted numerous large-scale sweep operations in two predominantly Uighur areas of Urumqi, Erdaoqiao, and Saimachang. On a smaller scale, these operations and targeted raids continued at least through mid-August.

The victims of “disappearances” documented by Human Rights Watch were young Uighur men. Most were in their 20s, although the youngest reported victims were 12 and 14 years old. It is possible that some Han Chinese also became victims of “disappearances” and unlawful arrests. However, none of the more than two dozen Han Chinese residents of Urumqi interviewed by Human Rights Watch provided any information about such cases.

According to witnesses, the security forces sealed off entire neighborhoods, searching for young Uighur men. In some cases, they first separated the men from other residents, pushed them to their knees or flat on the ground, and, at least in some cases, beat the men while questioning them about their participation in the protests. Those who had wounds or bruises on their bodies, or had not been at their homes during the protests, were then taken away. In other cases, the security forces simply went after every young man they could catch and packed them into their trucks by the dozens……. (more details from Human Rights Watch)

Posted in China, ethnic, Human Rights, Law, Life, News, NW China, People, Politics, Report, Social, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China: 43 Detainees ‘Disappeared’ After Xinjiang Protests, Recent Report Shows

China Police Enforced Uyghur Family Burial in Xinjiang Province

Posted by Author on September 22, 2009


Radio Free Asia, 2009-09-21 –

HONG KONG—Police in China’s remote Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region surrounded the home of an ethnic Uyghur man who died in police custody and forced the family to bury him without an inquiry into how he died, the man’s father said.

The burial on Sunday ended a tense standoff between police in remote Lengger [in Chinese, Langan] village and the family of Shohret Tursun, 31, whose badly bruised and disfigured body was released to his relatives on Saturday.

On Saturday, one villager said eight trucks of soldiers and two other armed vehicles had surrounded Tursun’s family home in Lengger [in Chinese, Langan] village in Qorghas [in Chinese, Huocheng] county, Ili prefecture—after the family refused to bury him as instructed without an inquiry.

“We locked the door of the room where we keep the body, but the police officers broke the lock,” Tursun’s father, Tursun Ishan, said in an interview. “There were too many…”

“There were police officers waiting in front of our door. From the cemetery to the house, it was full of police officers on the street. Since yesterday, there were police officers on each and every corner of the city. They wouldn’t let people from other neighborhoods join the funeral.”

“My two daughters were trying to prevent the police officers from entering, but the police were very harsh with them. We were forced to bury [the body],” Ishan said.

“They told me that he had a heart attack. But it was a lie. It is a lie. My son never had a medical problem in his life,” Ishan said.

“His body was full of wounds and bruises—his legs, belly, and back were covered with wounds and scars. His chest was full of bruises.”

Police continued to surround the family home and the cemetery shortly after midnight Tuesday, he said.

Ethnic rioting

Tursun, a member of the Uyghur ethnic minority and the father of a two-year-old, was among some 40 men from Qorghas detained around the time of deadly protests July 5 in the regional capital, Urumqi, villagers said.

The protests by Uyghurs, a largely Muslim Turkic people, followed alleged official mishandling of earlier ethnic clashes in far-away Guangdong province.

The July 5 protest sparked days of deadly rioting in Urumqi, pitting Uyghurs against majority Han Chinese and ending with a death toll of almost 200, by the government’s tally.

Tursun was detained July 6 in Urumqi. He was transferred to Ili on July 18 and Qorghas on July 23, he father said.

“If I had bribed the police officers, my son would probably be released,” he said. “I considered selling my land to save my child, but his wife and mother were afraid a bribe would make him look guilty.”

“Another boy in the same prison cell with my son was released after his family paid 30,000” yuan, or about U.S. $4,400, he said……. (more details from Radio Fraa Asia)

Posted in China, ethnic, Law, News, NW China, People, Politics, Social, Torture, World, Xinjiang | 1 Comment »

Communist Party City Chief in Xinjiang Sacked After Mass Protests

Posted by Author on September 6, 2009


Radio Free asia, 2009-09-05 –

Chinese armed police march along a street in Urumqi, Sept. 5, 2009. (via RFA)

Chinese armed police march along a street in Urumqi, Sept. 5, 2009. (via RFA)

HONG KONG— The top Communist Party official in the city of Urumqi, Li Zhi, has been removed from his post after days of mass protests in which five people died, sparked by a bizarre series of syringe stabbings.

The director of Xinjiang’s public security department, Liu Yaohua, was also sacked and replaced with Aksu prefecture party chief Zhu Changjie.

Authorities have meanwhile deployed thousands of riot police to the capital of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, where nearly 200 people were killed in July in fighting between Han Chinese and ethnic Uyghurs.

Unconfirmed reports said police used tear gas to disperse protesters, while other reports said the stabbings were continuing.

Protesters marched by the thousands Thursday and Friday demanding the resignation of Li and his boss, Xinjiang party secretary Wang Lequan, for failing to provide adequate public safety in the city.

No reasons were citing for the firings, but the rioting in July was the worst in Xinjiang in more than a decade. Uyghurs, who are ethnically distinct and largely Muslim, have long chafed under Beijing’s rule.

“I think it’s saying to local officials: don’t allow anything like this to happen.  The implicit message is: do whatever you need to make sure there are not such events, meaning–use repression, use policing, use infiltration and so forth,” Gardner Bovingdon, a professor of Central Eurasian studies at the University of Indiana told RFA on Saturday.

“Hard-liners are in the ascendant.   The July 5 protests and this new round of protests and the firing … all indicate that the government is going to go for still more rigorous political control,” he added……. (more details from Radio Free asia)

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China’s Muslim Uyghurs Forbidden to Fast During Ramadan

Posted by Author on September 2, 2009


Epoch Times Staff  Sep 1, 2009  –

Chinese authorities in Xinjiang Province have issued a notice that any Uyghur cadres or workers found not eating lunch during Ramadan could lose their jobs.

It is part of the campaign of local authorities in Xinjiang, home to the Muslim Uyghur ethnic group, to force the Uyghur people to give up their religious rituals during the fasting month of Ramadan.

Ramadan is a holy month in the Islamic calendar, which begun this year on Aug. 22. It requires not eating during the daytime.

“Free lunches, tea, and coffee—that authorities are calling ‘Care from the government’ or ‘Living allowance’—are being offered in government departments and companies. But it is actually a ploy used to find out who is fasting,” said Dilxat Raxit, World Uyghur Congress spokesman, speaking to The Epoch Times.

According to Dilxat, Uyghur Communist Party cadres throughout Xinjiang had been forced to sign “letters of responsibility” promising to avoid fasting and other religious activities. They are also responsible for enforcing the policy in their assigned areas, and face punishment if anyone in these areas fasts.

For the first time, Dilxat said, the crackdown has extended to retired Communist Party members. Current cadres are required to visit them to prevent them from participating in the fast. If anyone violates the ban, local leaders will be held responsible and severely punished, he said.

Muslim restaurant owners are forced to sign a document to remain open and continue selling alcohol during Ramadan or have their licenses revoked, he said.

Uyghurs arrested during the July riots in Urumqi are also prohibited from fasting; those who insist on fasting will be force fed food and water while enduring insults for their misbehavior, he said in the interview.

Monks in mosques are forced to preach to others that fasting is a “feudal activity” and harmful to health, said Dilxat. Otherwise, their religious certification will be cancelled……. (more details from The Epochtimes)

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China: All communications with Xinjiang cut for past six days

Posted by Author on July 11, 2009


Reporters Without Borders, 10 July 2009 –

Several Uyghur students currently in Paris told Reporters Without Borders today they have been unable to contact their relatives in Xinjiang since 5 July, either through the Internet or by telephone.

At the same time, the China Digital Times website had published a list of 118 keyword combinations such as “Xinjiang blood”, “Han and Uyghur cannot live under the same sky”, “Uyghur and Han, demonstration” and “conflict, Han and Uyghur” that produce no result in search engines because they have been blocked by the Chinese authorities. See http://chinadigitaltimes.net/2009/0….

For more information on the censorship of independent news and information about Xinjiang, see the Reporters Without Borders press release of 7 July……. (more details from Reporters Without Borders)

Posted in China, Freedom of Information, Human Rights, Internet, military, News, NW China, Politics, Social, Technology, website, World, Xinjiang | Comments Off on China: All communications with Xinjiang cut for past six days

Facebook Inaccessible in China After Violent Clashes in Urumqi

Posted by Author on July 10, 2009


By Tim Culpan, The Bloomberg, July 9, 2009 –

July 9 (Bloomberg)
— Facebook Inc.’s social-networking Web site was inaccessible in China as the government blocks information after violent clashes in one of its regions.

As of 1:36 p.m. Beijing time, there were at least 36 reports of Facebook.com being unavailable from China, according to Herdict.org, a project at Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, which tracks Web outages. Local access to the YouTube.com video site of Google Inc. was also broken, and connections to Amazon.com Inc.’s online store were irregular.

China’s government, which maintains tight control over the Internet, media and information flow, severed access to e-mails and the Web this week in the western city of Urumqi in Xinjiang province amid ethnic clashes that left more than 150 people dead and 1,000 injured. Authorities blocked Google’s search engine last month amid criticism it spread pornography.

“The government wants to show it’s doing as much as it can to prevent links to information from overseas as well as from inside China,” Duncan Clark, chairman of BDA China, a Beijing- based technology consultancy, said by phone. “It won’t work.”

Facebook.com couldn’t be accessed from Beijing or Shanghai as of 11 a.m. local time, while connections were possible from Seattle and Brisbane, Australia, according to WebSitePulse.com. Yahoo! Inc.’s Yahoo.com Internet portal and Microsoft Corp.’s Hotmail.com e-mail service were reachable from all four locations, according to WebSitePulse.com.

“It does appear to be running slowly” in China, said Larry Yu, a spokesman for Palo Alto, California-based Facebook. “We’re looking into the matter, what the reason is for the service running slowly.”

‘Prisoner of State’

Amazon.com, the world’s largest online store, sells “Prisoner of the State: The Secret Journal of Premier Zhao Ziyang,” the banned memoirs of the former chief of the Chinese Communist Party, who was under 16 years of house arrest until his death in 2005. He secretly taped his account of the infighting among party officials before they ordered the military to crush pro-democracy demonstrations on Beijing’s Tiananmen Square in 1989. Clicking on the book’s Web page from China blocks the whole site for at least 15 minutes, and it can be re-accessed once the Internet browser’s history is cleared.

This may mark the first time the government has totally suppressed access to Amazon.com, broadening previous restrictions on Web pages for individual books, Clark said. …… (More from Bloomberg)

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