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    1. A China More Just, Gao Zhisheng
    2.Officially Sanctioned Crime in China, He Qinglian
    3.
    Will the Boat Sink the Water? Chen Guidi, Wu Chuntao
    4.
    Losing the New China, Ethan Gutmann
    5.
    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 ‘Nanjing’ Category

Source of Organs for Transplants a Mystery in China- No voluntary donations in Nanjing City for a year

Posted by Author on March 6, 2011


Each year 1.5 million people in China need an organ transplant, but no one wants to donate. This was shown in a recent study reported by the Yangtse Evening Post. After one year, a pilot organ donation program in Nanjing City found zero volunteers.

The Feb. 24 piece in the Post said Nanjing was one of the ten cities chosen for the 2010 pilot because of its rapidly expanding population of 6.3 million. Not only were there no takers last year, but over the past 20 years there were only three voluntary donations, the article said. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, Crime against humanity, Health, Jiangsu, Law, Nanjing, News, Organ transplant, Politics, SE China, World | Comments Off on Source of Organs for Transplants a Mystery in China- No voluntary donations in Nanjing City for a year

UFO Frequently Visits China Recently

Posted by Author on September 28, 2010


Recently, reports of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO) have been occurring frequently in China.

On July 7 this year, more than 20 flights were postponed at Xiaoshan International Airport in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, because of a sighting.

Whenever such reported sightings occur, Wang Sichao, a research fellow at the Purple Mountain Observatory (PMO) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, is much busier than usual. In addition to studying the sightings, Wang, who started work on UFOs nearly 40 years ago, has to check and reply to mail about UFOs from all across China.

Lately, Wang predicted “great events” concerning UFOs were going to come out in China in the next two years. In an interview with Beijing Review, he shared his views and stories with reporter Tang Yuankai. ……(more details from Beijing Review)

Posted in China, Hangzhou, Jiangsu, Nanjing, SE China, South China, Zhejiang | Comments Off on UFO Frequently Visits China Recently

China Democracy Activist Guo Quan Sentenced 10 Years for Subversion

Posted by Author on October 20, 2009


NTDTV, 2009-10-20 –

A former Chinese judge and university professor has been found guilty of “subversion of state power” and given a 10-year prison sentence. Guo Quan had challenged China’s one-party rule.

Guo had been detained several times since 2007 for things like posting articles on the Internet that called for a democratic system in China. In 2008, he founded the New Democracy Party of China.

Guo’s online postings eventually became a target of China’s Internet police, and he was fired from his job at Nanjing Normal University. Last November, he was arrested in Nanjing and has been detained ever since.

On Friday, the Suqian Intermediate People’s Court in Jiangsu Province found Guo guilty of so-called “subversion of state power.” The ill-defined charge is often used by the communist regime to suppress political dissidents.

One legal expert told Sound of Hope Radio that the verdict is against China’s own constitution.

[Professor Zhang Zanning, Chinese Law Expert]:
“This is like the modern literary inquisition. Legally, it doesn’t have a foot to stand on. Doesn’t China’s constitution allow the freedom of expression and the freedom of association? So this verdict violates the constitution.”

NTDTV

Posted in China, Freedom of Speech, Guo Quan, Human Rights, intellectual, Jiangsu, Law, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, Social, Speech, World | Comments Off on China Democracy Activist Guo Quan Sentenced 10 Years for Subversion

Mother Discovers Meaning of ‘Subversion’ in China

Posted by Author on August 17, 2009


By Yun Gao, Epoch Times Staff Aug 17, 2009 –

One by one individuals in China are coming to recognize that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is not the future for China. In a courtroom in Jiangsu Province, a CCP member suddenly came to look upon the Party in a new light, as she watched her son be tried on the charge of “subversion.”

Prof. Guo Quan, who has endured several arrests the last few years, was arrested this last time on Nov. 13, 2008. His mother, Ms. Xiao Gu, says that she “had never understood the thoughts of my son.” Yet, as she left the courtroom on Aug. 7, she shouted: “Son, you are great! I am proud of you!”

These words marked a dramatic reconciliation of Ms. Gu to her son’s path of political dissidence.

Open Letters on the Internet

Prof. Guo first went public with his criticism of the CCP in an open letter he published on the internet addressed to CCP head Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao. The letter called for China adopting a truly democratic system in which multiple parties would compete in elections.

Other letters followed. In one he called for the military forces to be placed under national, rather than Party, control. In another he called for the protection of the rights of the workers who lost their jobs during the privatization of state-owned companies.

Retribution came swiftly. Professor Guo was forbidden to teach—he was an associate professor at Nanjing Normal University—and was expelled from the Democratic League. The Democratic League is one of eight fake political parties controlled by the communist party, whose purpose is to give China the appearance of having a democratic system.

Chinese New People’s Party

Three days after being expelled from the Democratic League, Professor Guo launched a party called the Chinese New People’s Party. The name New People’s Party was chosen because Guo wanted to distinguish it from parties like the Democratic League……. (more details from The Epochtimes)

Posted in Activist, China, Human Rights, Jiangsu, Law, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, Social, Speech, World | Comments Off on Mother Discovers Meaning of ‘Subversion’ in China

China Toy Manufacturer’s Gifts List to Officials Exposed

Posted by Author on December 31, 2008


Epoch Times Staff  Dec 31, 2008 –

Chinese New Year is the gift season for businesses in China. A Nanjing toy manufacturer’s list of gifts to governmental officials was accidentally revealed to the public on December 27, 2008. T

he list showed that Jiashide Toys Products paid 144,800 Yuan (approximately US$ 21,198) as “gifts” to Chinese officials in 2007.

According to the manufacturer’s records, Jiashide Toys manufactured and exported soft toys. The company shut down October 2008 for unknown reasons.

Many suppliers visited the factory recently to collect on outstanding accounts/debts amounting to over 400,000 Yuan (approximately US$58,552). The owner was nowhere to be found.

The debt collectors decided to ransack the factory to collect debt evidence and came across a list of 2007 New year’s “gifts” that were paid to regime officials.

The roster specifies more than 40 “gift” transactions, actually bribes, and detailed the names and the amount paid each individual. According to the recipient’s importance, the “gift amount” is staggered, from a high of 10,000 Yuan cash to supermarket vouchers worth 200 Yuan.

The list also detailed 94,000 Yuan of expenditures for gift cards, 24,000 Yuan cash, 17,800 Yuan in vouchers, and 9,000 Yuan worth of brand-name clothing—144,800 Yuan in all.

This disclosure once again showcases the common practice of merchants and others offering bribes in the form of “gifts” to Chinese officials during holiday time, hoping for a favour from the regime. There is no other way to do business in China at present—Chinese officials are the barriers to either smooth or rocky business transactions of any kind in China. These bribes are guarantees for business owners and could be looked on as “public relations between the regime and the citizens.”

The Epochtimes

Posted in Business, Businessman, China, Company, corruption, Jiangsu, Law, Nanjing, News, Official, People, Politics, SE China, Social, World | 2 Comments »

China Professor Arrested for Democracy Activities

Posted by Author on November 15, 2008


By Gu Qinger, Epoch Times Staff, Nov 14, 2008 –

Associate professor of Nanjing Normal University and deputy chairman of the China New Democracy party, Guo Quan, was arrested in Nanjing City yesterday morning and charged with subversion of state power.

“He was arrested as he was taking our child out the door around 8:00a.m.,” said Guo’s wife, Li Jing. “[Police] showed his mother an arrest warrant which read ‘subversion of state power.’ I was not very clear what happened then. The police held me this morning in Gulou police station, and I was questioned before my release. About twenty policemen raided our house and took away his belongings.”

“He could be sentenced for subversion of state power,” police told Li Jing.

Two days ago, Guo posted on the Internet that he would file a case with two other dissidents: Wang Zhaojun, standing member of the Anhui Province Political Consultative Commission, and Zheng Cunzhu, a contact person for the China Democracy Party in the U.S. The case targeted NetEasy.net, a Chinese company on the U.S. stock market that promised to assist the Chinese authorities to filter contents related to Guo and his colleagues.

But that might not be the direct cause of Guo’s arrest. “Guo has been writing articles advocating Chinese democracy over the years and collaborating with overseas dissidents,” explained Zheng. “For example, he wrote a famous open letter to Chinese leaders calling for the establishment of a multiparty democracy in China on November 14 in 2007.”

– The Epochtimes: Deputy Chairman of China New Democracy Party Arrested

Posted in China, Guo Quan, Human Rights, intellectual, Jiangsu, Law, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, World | Comments Off on China Professor Arrested for Democracy Activities

China: Jailed Writer to Receive PEN’s Freedom to Write Award

Posted by Author on April 20, 2008


By Ben Hurley, Epoch Times Australia Staff, Apr 16, 2008-Mr. Yang Tianshui

A Chinese dissident writer and Epoch Times contributor has been awarded the prestigious 2008 PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award.

However Yang Tongyan will not be able to attend the award presentation night in New York later this month, as he is currently serving a 12 year jail term in China for “subversion of state power”.

(Photo: Renowned freelance writer Mr. Yang Tianshui from Nanjing City, China. /The Epoch Times)

Presented by International PEN, a global literary organisation and advocate of free expression, the award honours international literary figures who have been persecuted or imprisoned for exercising the right to freedom of expression.

“We are honouring an incredibly brave colleague of ours, once again in jail, for exercising the right to freedom of expression,” Larry Siems, Freedom-To-Write program director, told The Epoch Times.

“We hope that this award and attention will help him gain recognition and encourage his release.

“We hope that it will also bring attention to the 37 other writers in jail so they will also be released before the Olympic Games this summer.”

Mr Yang is known for his critical writings published on websites such as Epochtimes.com and Boxun.com, which include pieces written while in prison.

He ‘disappeared’ on December 23, 2005, having been detained without warrant in Nanjing on December 23, 2005, and held incommunicado at Dantu District Detention Centre in Zhenjiang, Jiangsu Province. Having heard nothing of his arrest or detainment, his family received a formal notification one month later from the Public Security Bureau of Zhenjiang City.

Mr Yang was convicted of subversion of state power for posting anti-government articles on the Internet, organizing a branch of the outlawed China Democracy Party, participating in China’s Velvet Action Movement and being elected as a member of its “Interim Government of Democratic China,” and accepting illegal funds from overseas to transfer to jailed political dissidents and their families.

He was sentenced on May 16, 2006 to 12 years’ imprisonment, after a three-hour trial that was closed to the public.

In previous pieces published on The Epoch Times website, Mr Yang publicly put forward concrete steps towards democratic reform, as well as praised individual actions against the communist regime’s information blockade.

In one article entitled “Yearn Hero Liu Chengjun”, published on Epochtimes.com on July 24, Mr Yang praises the actions of Falun Gong practitioner Liu Chengjun, who in March 2002 tapped into cable TV networks in Changchun city and Songyan city with several others, to broadcast highly-censored information about the state-led persecution of Falun Gong.

Mr Liu was arrested on March 24 after a large-scale search. He was sentenced to 19 years in prison by the Changchun People’s Intermediate Court on September 20, and passed away in the Jilin University Sino-Japanese Hospital on December 26, 2003, with evidence that he had undergone grueling, long-term torture in custody.

“In China, how many people have the capability and courage to use modern technology to strike the autocracy, except Liu Chenjun and his fellow Falun Gong practitioners?” lamented Yang Tongyan.

“Their action terrified the rulers, encouraged people who pursue freedom and democracy, and made those who have not realized the moral power of Falun Gong to be ashamed.

“No word can express our yearning and reverence to brother Liu Chengjun.”

Yang Tongyan is one of nearly 200 members of the Independent Chinese PEN Center, which was established in 2001 by dissident writers inside China and in the diaspora.

PEN has invited Yang’s lawyer, Mr Li Jianqiang, to travel from Beijing to accept the award on Mr Yang’s behalf at PEN’s Annual Gala on April 28 at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

Li, an ICPC member himself, has represented at least eight of the 38 writers and journalists PEN believes are imprisoned in violation of their right to freedom of expression in China. He had his license to practice law revoked last year for his efforts.

Original report from The epochtimes: Jailed Epoch Times Contributor to Receive Award

Posted in China, Freedom of Speech, Human Rights, Jiangsu, Journalist, Law, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, Social, World, writer | Comments Off on China: Jailed Writer to Receive PEN’s Freedom to Write Award

Expelled by the Communist, Chinese Professor Becomes a New Democratic Party Chairman

Posted by Author on December 28, 2007


By Xin Fei, Epoch Times Staff, Dec 21, 2007-

Former associate professor of Nanjing Normal University Guo Quan, was expelled from the China Democratic League—one of China’s political flower vase organizations, because he continually publishes open letters promoting democratic reform in China. Soon after, he was invited to be the acting chairman of the newly established Chinese New People’s Party (CNPP) on December 17.
In an Epoch Times interview, Quo said that although the CNPP was just established, it already has 8,000,000 members; they are from all walks of life in China, including farmers who lost their land, workers who lost their jobs, retired military servicemen, students, etc.

Guo stressed that those who have been members of other democratic parties, as long as they oppose autarchy and promote democracy, they can also be members of the CNPP at the same time; but those who are members of the Communist Party must withdraw before joining the CNPP.

Removed for Publishing Open Letters

Since November 14, Guo started publishing his open letters to the nation’s leaders. On December 6, the Nanjing Normal University (NNU) Communist Party Commission stripped him of his professorship and made him a librarian. The authority also searched his house, confiscated some personal property, and interrogated him for 12 hours on the evening of December 7.

On December 13, the vice chairman and organization commissioner of the Democratic League Committee of NNU visited him and said, “Your open letters have brought great pressure on the Democratic League and Nanjing Normal University. We think firing you is too great a political price to pay, therefore we are here today to ask for your resignation.” Guo replied, “I will only accept being fired, I will not consider resignation.”

In the morning of December 14, the chairman and vice chairman of the Democratic League of NNU came to Guo’s office again to request his resignation, they said, “Your open letters have caused a great impact domestically and internationally, and placed the government in an awkward position. Your open letters opposing the Communist Party’s one party reign is against the constitution, the constitution stipulates that Chinese people can only support and must insist on the leadership of the Communist Party.

The constitution of the China Democratic League also firmly supports the leadership of the Communist Party. Therefore, we have solid ground to fire you. But it is our consideration that if we fired you, the Democratic League in Nanjing Normal University would not receive the party’s Advance Award for 10 years. Please consider the cost to the Democratic League and resign.”

Because Guo insisted on not resigning, on the afternoon of December 14, he received a notice from the “China Democratic League Nanjing Normal University Commission’s expelling him from League Membership.”

As the acting chairman of the CNPP, Guo is currently preparing his seventh open letter to the Chairman of the China Democratic League, Jiang Shusheng.

Founding the New Party to Awaken the Public

Guo stated that since 2002, he and his team have provided legal and technical assistance to human rights activists nationwide. As of now, his human rights defense team has more than 10 million members.

Since being expelled by the China Democratic League, the human rights team that Guo has worked for announced the transformation of the human rights organization into a new party, the CNPP. On December 17, the party entrusted him to take the post of acting party chairman.

Guo said the name of the CNPP has two meanings: one is to differentiate it from the other so-called democratic parties—political flower vases in China; the other is to educate people about democracy and thus awaken people. This is based on the concept of how the Chinese traditional culture inspires people’s wisdom.

Guo said that he was drafting the CNPP party’s constitution. And before China lifts the ban of forming a party, the CNPP will not carry on any form of registration in order to avoid the Communist Party’s suppression.

He said, “The CNPP is a democratic party completely open to the public. Regardless of religion, belief or social standing, as long as the person wholeheartedly supports democracy, they can claim themselves as a member.

But Guo specifically stressed those who have joined the Chinese Communist Party before must withdraw in order to join the new party.

Guo said that after China lifts the ban on forming parties, this party will carry on the registration in accordance with the new law. The election of the party chairman will commence immediately afterwards, any member of the CNPP can announce candidacy. Before that Guo will be acting chairman.

Uniting All Forces Opposing Dictatorship

Guo said forming the CNPP has great significance because China has a large number of people with courage and wisdom that support democracy. But their strength cannot be brought into full play without being united.

He said that the first task of the CNPP is to unify people, to consolidate their strength, and to unite all people that want to build a real and meaningful democratic China in which people are the master.

Guo said, “Without democracy, there is no ‘New China!'(1) Those who advocate, ‘if there is no Communist Party, China will collapse and be in chaos,’ have the hidden agenda of protecting the autocratic regime. China can move forward only when it is free from the present autocratic reign.”

Note: (1) The Chinese Communist Party has promoted the slogan a ‘New China’ since before 1949 to justify its existence in the minds of the people.

– Original report from the Epochtimes: Former Chinese Professor Chosen as Acting New Party Chairman

Posted in China, Guo Quan, Human Rights, intellectual, Jiangsu, Law, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, Social | 2 Comments »

Professor Guo Quan’s Open Letter to Chinese Leaders Requests Democracy

Posted by Author on November 30, 2007


By Xin Fei, Epoch Times Staff, Nov 22, 2007-Guo Qian, Nanjing Normal University Associate Professor

China Democratic League member, and Nanjing Normal University Associate Professor Guo Quan, published an open letter to Chinese leaders Hu Jintao and Wu Bangguo on November 14, 2007, in which he calls for a “democratic government based on multi-party elections that serves the interests of the people.”

(photo: Professor Guo Quan teaches Chinese traditional culture. Photo supplied by Guo Quan / the Epochtimes)

Professor Guo’s letter is the third open letter in the past three weeks requesting democracy and political reform. Authors of the first two letters are Politburo Standing Committee member Wang Zhaojun and entrepreneur Zheng Cunzhu. Many believe these open letters mark the start of a new age in which Chinese learn to openly express their political ideas.

In an interview with The Epoch Times, Guo Quan highly praised Mr. Wang Zhaojun, author of the first open letter. “For his age and social status,” said Guo, “Mr. Wang has amazing understanding and sympathy for ordinary people.” Guo noted that he agrees fully with Wang’s views, “I always support those who truly speak for the people, and I always agree with ideas that will benefit the people.”

Professor Guo explained that he started to write the letter in July after long consideration. The materials of the letter are from 18th of the 71 articles he wrote earlier.

In his letter, Guo advocates the abolition of the one-party dictatorship, arguing that the people have the right to choose their own ruling party and to implement a democratic government through multi-party elections. He reasoned, “As taxpayers, the people have the right to choose their own public servants, just like shoppers have the right to select what product they want to buy. Government officials are public servants the people pay for, so the people have the right to replace any official who is not doing a good job.”

Guo Quan said that the only way to ensure that the government carries out its responsibilities to people’s wellbeing is to ensure people’s right to choose their own government. So the one-party dictatorship has to be abolished and multi-party elections should be realized.

Professor Guo criticized the Chinese authorities’ declaration that Chinese people are not well educated enough to have a democratic system.

“They treat Chinese people as idiots,” said Guo with indignation. “Actually as long as Chinese people are allowed to make their own choice, they will certainly choose the best. It is common sense to choose the people who will do good to us. How much education does it take to see this?”

Guo Quan pointed out that what the communist regime says is different from what it does. “How can this regime ‘serve the people’ when it is already so corrupt? In any other country, people would not tolerate such a corrupt party to rule the country.”

Guo Quan attributes all of China’s problems to the country’s political structure. He added that at present, the few “bigwigs” who hold over 90 percent of the total wealth in China are sacrificing people’s health and the nation’s future, to maintain their luxurious lifestyle.

Guo Quan urged Chinese people stand up for themselves. “Let’s all voice our wills. Let’s find ways to allow more people to speak out!”

“Each voice serves as a vote,” remarked the professor, encouraging people to “go out to the street”. “By going out to the street,” he said, “I’m not only talking about holding demonstrations and giving speeches in the street or other public places. I’m also talking about using public media and Internet to speak out your true will. The more people speak out, the better the effect.”

Guo believes that, as a butterfly’s wings may cause a tornado, a few small voices will bring about great changes.

Guo Quan also commented on the notorious persecution of Falun Gong. As a former judge, Guo pointed out that “the whole process of suppressing Falun Gong goes against the law.” He said it is completely against the existing laws that Falun Gong practitioners are completely denied their rights to defend themselves in public.

Guo Quan expressed his admiration for Falun Gong practitioners’ anti-persecution efforts and truth-clarification over the past eight years. As a Christian, Guo said that if one has faith in God, one’s belief will give one a strong will. Guo added, “I treat those who have righteous beliefs as my brothers and sisters, including Falun Gong practitioners.”

As for the possible solutions in which China can move toward democracy, Guo Quan thinks that Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s “Three Principles of the People” and “Three Lines of the Governments” is a road which can effectively promote social development in China for its future. The democratic system of Taiwan which shares the same root, the same culture and the same race, is therefore the only road to progress in the human rights cause in China. The disintegration of the former Soviet Union has lessons for China as well.

Guo Quan, born in 1968, is a member of China Democratic League. He was a cadre in state-owned enterprises, a secretary of the Committee of Nanjing Municipal Economic Reform and a legal staff member. After finishing his post-doctoral program in 2001, he joined the faculty there, where he is an associate professor of Literature in Nanjing University. He successively held the posts of postgraduate class teacher in the School of Humanities, director of the adult education office, assistant dean and managing editor on an academic journal produced by the College of Letters in Nanjing Normal University. He is also an adjunct researcher of the Center of Nanjing Massacre Studies.

original report from the Epochtimes

Related:
China Enters “Era of Open Letters”

Posted in China, Guo Quan, intellectual, Jiangsu, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, Social, Speech, World | 4 Comments »

China Enters “Era of Open Letters”

Posted by Author on November 26, 2007


Epoch Times Staff, Nov 19, 2007-

Mr. Wang Zhaojun, a successful businessman and provincial level official from Anhui province, wrote an open letter to the Chinese government advocating political reform. Two more open letters followed within one month. The most recent letter states, “the disintegration of the former Soviet Union is the road of social development, this experience can be useful to China.”

Return the People’s Right to Vote

The third letter was published by Mr. Guo Quan, a member of the China DemocraticGuo Quan League— a political party in China.

Thirtynine-year-old Guo is an associate professor at Nanjing Normal University. In his open letter he promotes a two-party political system, stating that it does not just belong to western countries. A two-party political system could maximize the out-party’s supervision ability while minimizing social instability.

(photo: Guo Quan)
Guo said, “Only when people truly hold the ballot in their hands, can the party in power be a true public servant.”

One-Party Dictatorship Means No Social Harmony

Guo also said in his open letter that in a dictatorship, no other groups have the power to compete with the ruling party. People are forbidden to form political parties or independent media and thus have no way to defend their interests. Guo stated, “The social harmony claimed by such politics, is desperate and meaningless.”

Guo also wrote in the letter that he has studied Chinese political system for many years. He said, “Whenever I review the history of victims under such a political system (those victims ranging from everyday people to the president of the nation) I ask myself, if our country is called The People’s Republic of China, as a republic, what is its core? Should it be democracy and rule of law? But what is truly void in the political system of this People’s Republic of China is precisely democracy and rule of law.”

Guo urged Beijing to return the power to the people. “Chinese leaders should be elected by Chinese people, not from a weapon or minority party.”

Guo also said that many people in Chinese society know of the disintegration of the former Soviet Union. This collapse, in his view, is one step forward in the history of mankind—a step of mankind moving to democracy. Guo urges to make “China a constitutional country with law, justice, and power of the people as soon as possible.”

The “Era of the Open Letter”

Political commentator Liang Jing believes that Chinese people are tired of the regime, the scholars and elite group are fed up with the official communication channels, and China has entered “an era of the open letter.” Many Chinese scholars are using many different opportunities to speak up.

Original report from the epochtimes

Related:
China Adviser Drops Bombshell In call for Reforms

Posted in China, Guo Quan, Human Rights, intellectual, Jiangsu, Nanjing, News, People, Politics, SE China, Social, Speech, World | 2 Comments »

Airports closed, thousands stranded by China fog

Posted by Author on December 27, 2006


Reuters, Dec. 26, 2006-

BEIJING, Dec 26 (Reuters) – Thousands of passengers across eastern, northern and central China have been stranded after heavy fog closed airports and hundreds of flights were cancelled, state media said on Tuesday.

Highways were also closed and in some cities, such as Lanzhou in the northwest, authorities issued pollution alerts and warned people not to go outside as smog had worsened the situation, Xinhua said.

“In some provinces, people are advised to wear masks as the heavy smog contains pollutants like carbon monoxide,” Xinhua said.

Airports in Nanjing, Hangzhou and Hefei in China’s east and Jinan in the north either closed completely or cancelled most flights, it said, stranding around 20,000 people.

“No flights have taken off since this morning,” an official at Nanjing airport said by telephone, adding he not know when the situation would return to normal.

The fog is expected to dissipate as freezing air from Siberia moves across China, Xinhua said, though temperatures would fall by up to 10 degrees Celcius (50 degrees Fahrenheit)

Two people died in road accidents caused by the poor weather, the official Xinhua news agency said.

original report here

Posted in air, Anhui, Central China, China, East China, Environment, Gansu, Hangzhou, Health, Hefei, Lanzhou, Life, Nanjing, News, North China, People, pollution, Social, travel, Zhejiang | Comments Off on Airports closed, thousands stranded by China fog

17 communist union branches now set up in Wal-Mart China

Posted by Author on September 3, 2006


China Labour Bulletin, 15 August 2006–

Since July 29, the All-China Federation of Trade Unions(ACFTU, state controlled)’s drive to set up union branches in Wal-Mart stores in China has snowballed rapidly, with a total of 17 union branches now having been formed in Wal-Mart stores in cities around the country. They include three unions in Fuzhou and one in Quanzhou, Fujian Province; one in Nanjing and another in Shanghai; three in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province; two in Shenyang and three in Dalian, Liaoning Province; and others in Jinan and Qingdao, Shandong Province, and in Nanchang, Jiangxi Province.

Wal-Mart first entered China’s domestic market in 1996 and currently employs around 32,000 workers in some 60 retail stores nationwide. Since 2003, the company has been under sustained pressure from the ACFTU to permit the formation of union branches in its China stores. In November 2004, the company caved in and publicly stated: “Should associates [i.e. employees] request formation of a union, Wal-Mart China would respect their wishes and honour its obligation under China’s Trade Union Law.” For the next year and a half, however, the ACFTU tried in vain to persuade Wal-Mart to cooperate in the actual establishment of union branches in its China stores.

That all changed after Hu Jintao, China’s president and Communist Party leader, directly intervened in March of this year. A lengthy article published on August 15 in the Beijing daily newspaper Xin Jing Bao (New Capital News) explains why the current spate of Wal-Mart union branches in China has emerged so suddenly and unexpectedly:

“According to the ACFTU’s records, On March 14 this year CPC Central Committee General Secretary Hu Jintao issued instructions on a report titled A Situation Analysis on the Factors of Instability in Foreign-invested Enterprises in China’s Coastal Area, and Some Proposed Countermeasures. Hu Jintao ordered: “Do a better job of building Party organizations and trade unions in foreign-invested enterprises.” This created a new and opportune moment for union building in foreign enterprises. On March 16 the ACFTU instructed its staff to study Hu Jintao’s comments, and it set the target of unionizing 60 percent or more of the country’s foreign-invested enterprises by the end of 2006, and 80 percent or more by the end of 2007.”

ACFTU Fulfils its Quota – Wal-Mart Accepts Fait Accompli

On Saturday, July 29, 25 Wal-Mart workers in the city of Quanzhou, Fujian Province, formed a seven-member trade union committee, thus breaking the long-standing absence of unions in Wal-Mart’s China stores. On August 4, 42 more workers at a Wal-Mart store in Shenzhen formed a union. The retail giant saw its third union in China set-up the following day in its Xinjiekou store in Nanjing, where 31 employees elected a local university graduate to head their trade union committee. Several hours later, another union was formed by 12 workers at a second Wal-Mart store in Shenzhen; and then on August 8, 27 employees of yet another store in Shenzhen voted to form the company’s fifth union branch.

All the union branches are relatively small, with around 25 to 35 members each. But what mainly distinguishes them, according to official Chinese reports, is that they were all set up “on the initiative of the workers themselves”, and in accordance with provisions of the PRC Trade Union Law of 2002 mandating the formation of unions in enterprises employing more than 25 workers. Regulations enacted by the Guangdong government in 2004 lowered the union-building threshold still further, in that province, to as few as 10 workers in a single enterprise.

For the first couple of weeks, Wal-Mart representatives remained uncharacteristically silent about the sudden unionization drive within the company’s China stores. On August 9, however, the official Xinhua News Agency quoted the vice president of Wal-Mart China, Li Chengjie, as saying it wanted to cooperate with the ACFTU “in a more effective and harmonious way.” The same day, the ACFTU warned Wal-Mart not to retaliate against workers who form unions. The group, “led by the Communist Party of China and backed by the government, will take measures to protect these workers,” Xinhua reported, paraphrasing Guo Wencai, director of the ACFTU’s department of grassroots organizing. Wal-Mart then asked for direct negotiations with the ACFTU and requested that “no media” be allowed to attend such meetings. The 12 most recent Wal-Mart union branches have all been formed over the past week, and it now seems clear that the ACFTU’s goal is to unionize all 60 Wal-Mart stores around the country. (to be cont’d…)

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