Status of Chinese People

About China and Chinese people's living condition

  • China Organ Harvesting Report, in 19 languages

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  • Books to Read

    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
  • Did you know

    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 ‘disaster’ Category

Plague came from China: scientists

Posted by Author on November 1, 2010


AFP, Nov. 1, 2010 –

PARIS — The first outbreak of plague occurred in China more than 2,600 years ago before reaching Europe via Central Asia’s “Silk Road” trade route, according to a study of the disease’s DNA signature.

The findings flesh out long-held suspicions about the Chinese origins of the plague, which killed an estimated third of Europe’s population in the Middle Ages. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, disaster, Health, News, Plague | Comments Off on Plague came from China: scientists

Deaths in Guangdong Dam Collapse much higher than offcial number

Posted by Author on September 24, 2010


Radio Free Asia, Sep. 24, 2010 –

HONG KONG—Residents near a waste management dam in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong said several dozen households were swamped when the dam collapsed during a typhoon earlier this week, with more deaths than officials would admit to.

“This is really bad,” said a resident of the area near the Yinyan Tin Mine in Guangdong’s Xinyi city. “The houses have totally collapsed. Between one and two hundred people may have died.”

Official media reports said five people died in the collapse of the dam, which was operated by the Hong Kong-listed Zijin Mining Group, in the wake of torrential rain and mud and rock slides caused by typhoon Fanapi last week.

A further six people were listed as missing and seven were injured, reports said.

But local people said the number of casualties was likely much higher. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in China, disaster, Flood, Guangdong, Incident, News, SE China, World | Comments Off on Deaths in Guangdong Dam Collapse much higher than offcial number

Over 2,000 Dead Or Missing In Giant Northwest China Landslide

Posted by Author on August 8, 2010


“Then on Sunday a huge landslide in Northern China wiped out a village. Over 2,000 villagers are missing and 127 confirmed dead, according to China Daily.” –from businessinsider.com

images come from a CCTV video-- Zhouqu, Gansu Province, China

images come from a CCTV video-- Zhouqu, Gansu Province, China

Posted in China, disaster, Flood, Gansu, News, NW China, Photo, Social, World | Comments Off on Over 2,000 Dead Or Missing In Giant Northwest China Landslide

Greenpeace Says China Oil Spill 60 times larger than Officially Reported, after a 10-day on-site investigation

Posted by Author on July 30, 2010


VOA News, 30 July 2010 –

The environmental group Greenpeace says it believes an oil spill in northeastern China was up to 60 times larger than has been reported.

Richard Steiner, a marine conservation expert from the University of Alaska, announced the conclusion Friday after a 10-day on-site investigation.

Steiner estimates the July 16 explosion at an oil terminal in Dalian released 60,000 to 90,000 tons of crude oil into the South China Sea, making it larger than the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska.  Official estimates have said only 1,500 tons of crude were spilled.

The explosion ruptured two pipelines and ignited a fire that raged for 15 hours. Greenpeace said Chinese workers told the group they deliberately released additional oil into the sea to contain the fire and reduce the risk that a nearby tank of dimethylbenzene would explode.

Steiner said at a Beijing news conference that the explosion and fire completely destroyed one oil tank with a capacity of 90,000 tons. He said Greenpeace was told that the tank had been filled shortly before the blast.

He said a spill of that size would rank among the 30 largest ever recorded.

The oil spill expert, engaged as a consultant by Greenpeace, said Chinese crews have already recovered more than 1,500 tons of oil – the amount officially said to have been spilled.

Reuters news agency contacted PetroChina on Friday but said officials of the company, which operates the oil storage facilities at Dalian, could not confirm or deny the Greenpeace findings.

VOA News

Posted in China, Dalian, disaster, Environment, Liaoning, NE China, News, pollution, River, World | 2 Comments »

Northeast China town: Flooding traps 30,000, washed 1,000 barrels of explosive chemicals into a river

Posted by Author on July 28, 2010


BBC News, July 28, 2010 –

Flooding in northeastern China has stranded 30,000 people in one town and washed 1,000 barrels of explosive chemicals into a river, reports say.

In Kouqian town in Jilin province, residents were trapped when a reservoir and two rivers overflowed following torrential rain.

In Jilin city itself, containers of explosive fluid from a chemical plant were washed into the Songhua river.

China is facing its worst flooding in more than a decade.

Weeks of heavy rain have swollen rivers and caused damage, landslides and bridge collapses across a swathe of the country.

According to state media, 928 people have died because of the seasonal bad weather and another 477 are missing.

More than 200 rescue workers have been sent to Kouqian, where tens of thousands of residents are reportedly trapped after the Xingshan reservoir and the Wende and Songhua rivers burst their banks.

Chinese media reports said houses and buildings were under water, and 80 people were trapped in a train station surrounded by water.

In Jilin city, emergency teams were trying to recover barrels of explosive chemicals washed into the river.

Environmental officials were said to be monitoring the water quality in the river.

Further to the south, in Wuhan city in Hubei province, workers were sandbagging river banks ahead of possible flooding where the Yangtze and Han rivers converge…….(More details from BBC News)

Posted in China, disaster, Environment, Flood, Jilin, Life, NE China, News, pollution, River, World | Comments Off on Northeast China town: Flooding traps 30,000, washed 1,000 barrels of explosive chemicals into a river

BP oil spill: failed safety device on Deepwater Horizon rig was modified in China

Posted by Author on July 18, 2010


Tim Webb, The Observer, Sunday 18 July 2010 –

BP ordered the owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig, whose explosion led to the worst environmental disaster in US history, to overhaul a crucial piece of the rig’s safety equipment in China, the Observer has learnt. The blow-out preventer – the last line of defence against an out-of-control well – subsequently failed to activate and is at the centre of investigations into what caused the disaster.

Experts say that the practice of having such engineering work carried out in China, rather than the US, saves money and is common in the industry.

This weekend BP remained cautiously optimistic that the cap placed on top of the Gulf of Mexico well on Thursday night would continue to hold back the torrent of oil. It is the first time the flow has been stopped since the accident happened almost three months ago. But BP said that the pressure readings from the Macondo well were not as high as it had hoped, which could indicate that it has ruptured and that oil could be leaking out somewhere else.

There is no evidence that the significant modifications to the blowout preventer (BOP), which were carried out in China in 2005, caused the equipment to fail. But industry lawyers said BP could be made liable for any mistakes that a Chinese subcontractor made carrying out the work. It would be almost impossible to secure damages in China, where international law is barely recognised.

It is understood that lawyers for Cameron International, the manufacturer of the BOP, will argue the device was so significantly modified in China that it no longer resembled the original component, and that Cameron should therefore not be held liable.

Transocean, the owner of the Deepwater Horizon, which bought the BOP from Cameron, has already told congressional hearings into the disaster that the modifications were carried out at BP’s request and “under its direction” as the lessee of the rig. BP and Cameron declined to comment this weekend…….(more details from The Guardian)

Posted in China, disaster, Environment, News, pollution, products, USA, World | Comments Off on BP oil spill: failed safety device on Deepwater Horizon rig was modified in China

900-year-old drains save China city from deadly floods

Posted by Author on July 16, 2010


By Malcolm Moore in Shanghai, The Telegraph, UK, July 14, 2010 –

Torrential rain and flash floods have caused £1.9 billion of damage in China. Nearly forty people were killed this week alone in a series of landslides.

But the 100,000 residents of the ancient city of Ganzhou, in Jiangxi province, are safe and dry, thanks to two drains built during the Song dynasty (960-1279), which proved far more effective than modern sewer systems at coping with the downpour.

Two long tunnels, built using bricks from the city walls, cross the city and channel floodwater into two ponds that function as reservoirs. The designer of the system, Liu Yi, named the drains “Fu” or Fortune, and “Shou” or Longevity.

“The ancient residents of Ganzhou were very advanced in hydro-technology,” said Wang Ronghong, head of the city’s project management and maintenance office.

“They built 12 water gates at the mouth of the drain, which help block rising water during the rainy season. When the river level is lower than the gate, the water from the drainage system flows out, but if the water outside the city rises, the gates snap shut to prevent any of it coming in,” he explained.

The drainage system also uses the natural camber of the city to quickly channel water outwards. The original Song Dynasty system used hundreds of ponds across the city as reservoirs.

However, most of these have now been filled in by keen property developers, leaving only the old town’s ponds intact. As a consequence, the ancient city is the only one of Ganzhou’s 18 districts not to suffer from flooding.

The Telegraph

Posted in China, disaster, Flood, history, Jiangxi, News, Social, South China, Technology | Comments Off on 900-year-old drains save China city from deadly floods

At least 230 people died in China’s torrential rains, major city threatened by surged river water

Posted by Author on June 26, 2010


AFP, June 25, 2010 –

BEIJING — Chinese rescue teams scrambled to shore up flood defences Friday as a swollen river threatened a major city, after heavy rains across the nation’s south and centre left more than 230 people dead.

Workers and soldiers were patching up dykes in Hunan province after water in the Xiang river, which passes through Changsha city, where over six million people live, surged to its highest level in a decade.

The surge rose 2.5 metres (over eight feet) above the river’s danger marks, the third highest reading since 1953 when records of water levels began, the civil affairs ministry said.

“Water levels on the lower reaches of the Xiang river are rising and will not go down, and will surpass flood warning levels again,” the flood headquarters of the ministry warned.

Television footage showed small towns and rural areas upriver from Changsha deluged with water as residents evacuated low lying areas and scrambled to higher ground carting food and other supplies.

Authorities ordered reservoirs in the upper reaches of the Xiang river to store up more water in an effort to reduce the surging flood crests, the ministry said.

Although heavy downpours were not expected around Changsha on Friday, more than 180 millimetres (over seven inches) of rain fell in parts of Hunan on Wednesday and Thursday, ensuring that rivers would remain swollen, it added.

Overall, downpours in south and central China were receding Friday, it said, but heavy rain continued to fall in parts of Jiangxi, Fujian, and Zhejiang provinces and the Guangxi region, where major flooding has already taken place.

At least 235 people have died and 109 were missing since torrential rains triggered flooding and landslides in south and central China from June 13 to June 24, the government said.

The torrential rains have caused 53 billion yuan (7.8 billion dollars) in economic losses, with over three million people forced to evacuate, it said…….(AFP)

Posted in China, disaster, Flood, Hunan, Life, News, Social, South China, World | Comments Off on At least 230 people died in China’s torrential rains, major city threatened by surged river water

Hydropower Plant May Have Triggered Deadly Landslide in Southwest China, says Expert

Posted by Author on June 20, 2010


NTD TV –

On Tuesday at around 1:30 in the morning, part of a mountain collapsed in Kangding County in China’s southwestern Sichuan province. It killed 23 workers at a hydroelectric project construction site.

State media Xinhua reports that recent heavy rains triggered the landslide. But local geological expert Fan Xiao believes there may be another cause.

[Fan Xiao, Sichuan Geological and Mineral Bureau]:
“It’s mainly because of large scale work in recent years to construct the hydroelectric plant. Along the Dadu River there are over 20 hydropower stations which are all undergoing large-scale work… this has damaged the stability of the mountainsides, leading to mudslides when it rains. And digging also damages the stability of the mountain body, so eventually this creates a large scale mountain collapse.”

The part of the mountain that collapsed on Tuesday reached nearly 1.5 million cubic feet. It crushed a shed where construction workers slept, and temporarily blocked the water flow at a tributary of the Dadu River.

Fan Xiao, who is the chief engineer of the Regional Geology Investigation Team of the Sichuan Geology and Mineral Bureau, says hydropower construction in the region also poses other risks.

[Fan Xiao, Sichuan Geological and Mineral Bureau]:
“Many hydropower plants along the Dadu River are very large in scale. They have very tall dams that store a large amount of water. Coincidentally, the river is along an earthquake belt, and chances of these dams triggering an earthquake are very high too.”

In recent years, the Chinese regime has undertaken numerous hydropower projects to supply growing demands for electricity.

After the 2008 Sichuan earthquake Fan, and other experts, urged the suspension of new hydropower plants and a reassessment of geological risks posed by large-scale dams in the area.

NTD TV

Posted in China, dam, disaster, Environment, News, People, Politics, Sichuan, Social, SW China, World | Comments Off on Hydropower Plant May Have Triggered Deadly Landslide in Southwest China, says Expert

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 Three Gorges Dam Causes Quakes, Landslides and Cracks

Posted by Author on May 31, 2010


Michael Sheridan and Richard Jones, The Times, May 30, 2010 –

The Three Gorges dam
was so vast and sweeping a vision that nothing could stand in its way. Not the old cities of the Yangtze valley, storehouses of human toil and treasure for more than a thousand years. Not the lush, low-lying farmlands, nor the villages, nor even the pagodas and temples that graced the riverbanks.

The cries of dissenting scientists and the lamentations of more than a million Chinese people forced to leave their ancestral lands counted for nothing.

When the waters rose to 570ft last year, drowning all these things, it marked a triumph for the engineers at the top of the Chinese Communist party.

But in the past six months a sinister trail of events has unfolded from the dam all the way up the 410-mile reservoir to the metropolis of Chongqing.

It began with strange, small-scale earthquakes recorded by official monitoring stations and reported by the Chinese media.

Mysterious cracks split roads and sundered schoolhouses and apartments in newly built towns and villages on the bluffs looking down on the river.

The local government now says that 300,000 people will have to move out in addition to the 1.4m evicted to make way for the dam.

More than 50,000 residents have already been relocated owing to seismic problems that were not foreseen when the dam was built, according to the state news agency, Xinhua.

As the boats sail by, landslides can be seen from the river — some small, some big — staining the waters of the Yangtze with minerals and sediment.

Big pleasure cruisers, tramp steamers and shoals of sampans plough through waters that switch from hue to hue as their chemical composition changes.

In Badong county, midway through the Three Gorges, celebrated in Chinese painting and poetry, the citizens are troubled by a sense of foreboding.

The local government hastily moved out of a prestigious new block after experts warned that it was unsafe.

But ordinary folk and even schoolchildren have been left to fend for themselves. More than 3,000 children attend school every day in a building dating back to 1943 that officials know to be at risk of collapse. Nothing has been done to move them, supposedly because of a lack of funds.

The playground is riddled with cracks. One ominous jagged line runs down the side of the classrooms.

“The government agrees that our whole school must move,” said a worried teacher, who asked not to be named, “but so far it’s just talk.”

In a telling example of China’s glaring class differences, a group of unemployed workers live in housing provided by the state that is visibly cracking at the seams.

“What kind of dogshit government moves itself out and moves us into somewhere like this?” one of them complained.

“My house is like a fishing pond whenever it rains,” said Grandma Wang, 72. “I don’t mind for myself because I am old, but I care for my granddaughter, who is 10 and has to live in here.”

Badong is one of many places where the land and the water have interacted in ways that only a few scientists predicted before the dam was built. Their objections were overruled by the party.

But last week even the state media acknowledged that the Three Gorges area faced a “grim” situation. Officials have counted 97 significant landslides this year alone. These are linked to the worrying increase in seismic activity. ….. (more details from The Times)

Posted in China, Chongqing, dam, disaster, Environment, Life, News, People, Politics, Sichuan, Social, SW China, Three Gorges, World | 1 Comment »

An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (3)

Posted by Author on May 30, 2010


Secret China Staff, May 26, 2010 –

<< previous

Looking for Food from a Heap of Rubble

In the afternoon, we dug out some food from a heap of rubble. Some people even robbed the supermarket and small merchants from the city. A friend of mine from Xining called and asked me about the earthquake. I told him that we had nothing to eat. However, food was a small matter. More serious, was the lack of drinking water. Everyone was very thirsty including the patients. Some people got polluted river water and boiled it for drinking after the water was somewhat settled. We drank very little and gave most of the water to the patients.

The media said that food was not a problem. And that was a lie. We did not see food or water. Some people were lucky enough to rob a truck but most of us had nothing. All we had was what we dug out from the rubble.

The presence of Special Police Forces

At night, there were many special police officers present to direct traffic. The traffic started to move at 12:00pm but the whole day was wasted due to the traffic jams. Because of that, no victims had been rescued.

My students were still under a building. And many people were under collapsed buildings. When I went to the intersection again, I saw some places that had military units and rescue teams, but very few people. The team that was on top of a building was asked to get off by police declaring that a high level official was coming. Soon the roads were cleared. An hour later, Premier Wen Jiabao came. At that point the rescue operation started to move slowly.

The Coming of Premier Wen Jiabao

On May 16, the third day after the earthquake, at 7:00am the special police force was there to watch the roads and make sure no more traffic jams developed. But where were they yesterday when the traffic jam blocked the roads for an entire day? They only showed up because the the premier had arrived.

My students have been buried for two days. But we are too weak to help and so are many of their parents.

I won’t show the pictures and the video. I don’t want to lose my job. Who knows, they may even put me in jail. My family needs me now more than ever. (End)

Secretchina.com

Related:
An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (1)
An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (2)

Posted in China, disaster, earthquake, Life, News, NW China, People, Politics, Qinghai, Social, World | Comments Off on An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (3)

An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (2)

Posted by Author on May 30, 2010


Secret China Staff, May 26, 2010 –

<< previous

Rescue Team Put on a Show

At 2:00am I rode my motorcycle back to town. In the city I saw the rescue team still working to save people, but I was angry at the fact that only a few people were working, while a lot of rescue team members spent their time chatting and laughing. The locals were telling me, “They were on the building since noon hour. And now it is night and nothing has changed.” They are not saving people but doing a show of saving people.

In addition, many statements made were false. One reporter was telling a lie right in front of us: She said that now it is 2:00am and the rescue team is still working on saving people. Another reporter from a different TV station said that now it is 3am and the rescue team is still working tirelessly to save people. That is a big fat lie! The so-called rescue team, a total less than 10 people, has been on top of a building since lunch hour and has not moved a single stone. The victims under the building were calling for help when suddenly a fire started from inside the building and then was followed by silence. The rescue team did not even try to extinguish the fire!

They were here talking about saving people and did not go anywhere else. My students were all under the collapsed building, but they did not go there. However they said that they went. Honestly, we did not have any rescue team at all.

Plenty of Food and Water for the Rescue Teams but not for the Victims

On May 15, the rescue team did not save any victims. I saw them standing on the same building. At other places, only the locals were saving their relatives or friends. When I rode my motorcycle around the city to look for food, water, tents and quilts, I asked many police for these items. But the police officers all said they had nothing to give away. By then, it was almost noon and the roads were filled with vehicles from adjacent counties. The cars and trucks were loaded with food, tents etc,. Unfortunately, they were all for private usage.

The rescue team stationed above the race track had plenty of food and water. The people from the expedition team, or other rescue teams from certain units, also stayed at the stadium and had plenty food and water. Many families here did not have a tent to sleep in. After I came back from scouting, I found many families were putting up tents. I asked them where they got their tents. They said that they robbed others. By then the street was blocked with vehicles and all the goods on the pickups and trucks were being taken.

Later on, I rode the motorcycle around, but I did not see any more trucks with goods because of the traffic jam. Nothing was moving.(to be cont’d)

Secretchina.com

Related:
An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (1)

Posted in China, disaster, earthquake, Life, News, NW China, People, Politics, Qinghai, Social, World | Comments Off on An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (2)

An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (1)

Posted by Author on May 27, 2010


Secret China Staff, May 26, 2010 –

I am a school teacher and came to Xining, the capital of Qinhai Province, yesterday. I have witnessed the earthquake in Yushu.

At 5 am of May 14, while I was asleep, my bed started to shake, and then it shook so heavily that it almost threw me to the floor. I was startled. What was going on? Could this be an earthquake? I waited for a while and it became quiet. It was still dark out and no human voices or dogs barking could be heard. I fell asleep again because I was so tired. In my heart, I knew something was not right. I got up, put on my clothes and had a few puffs of my cigarette. Suddenly I was thrown onto the floor by the earthquake. I jumped up to open the door but could not. I rushed to the window, broke the window pane with a hammer and jumped into the yard. I could not see anything because of the thick dust.

Earthquake in Yushu—not like the reporting on TV

I am giving my first hand account of what happened during the earthquake. First of all, I want to clarify that the earthquake was not like what was reported on TV: It is not true that very few people died; it is not true that they were working hard to dig out the victims; it is not true that people had plenty of food and water; it is not true that they worked till midnight to save the victims. They are telling lies and the rescue operation only started slowly after Premier Wen Jiabao went there.

Many people were buried when the earthquake hit Yushu. Unlike the reporting on TV, only 1/3 of houses collapsed instead of 85%. But all the mud houses collapsed. What appeared on TV were houses in the center of the city.

At least 3,000 people died, that was what I saw. Many families were buried entirely and no one paid any attention to those people and no one recorded that either. I had witnessed at least 3,000 victims. Not everything in the report was true; some were made up stories.

No Food, No Water, No Help

When the earthquake hit, the three story dorm totally collapsed and all the students were buried. We started to dig them out but could not move the concrete rubble. We found the rescue team but they did not come until afternoon. When they did arrive, they only came with one forklift truck and did nothing. After sundown, not a single person was rescued.

Our neighboring families were buried, but we did not have time to help them. For two days, we were hurrying to dig out our own relatives, with hand shovels and wooden poles. On TV, they said that more than 6,000 people were saved. But the rescue team dug out very few people, mostly we dug out our relatives.

We put the victims on the horse race track. Because we used up all the medical supplies from school, we put the victims together. Some of them, we put on the trucks and covered them with quilts. At night, we found some wood pieces from the collapsed houses and burned them to keep warm. (to be cont’d)

Secretchina.com

Posted in China, disaster, earthquake, Life, News, People, Politics, Social, World | Comments Off on An Chinese school teacher’s account of Yushu Earthquake (1)

Shocking Documentary (must watch): Buried– Earth Quake, From 1976 Tangshan to 2008 Sichuan Wenchuan in China (video)

Posted by Author on May 16, 2010


Buried, a Documentary (With English and Chinese caption) produced by Wang Libo, won the prize in Chinese Documentary Exchange Week in 2009.

Director’s Statement: The 1976 Tangshan Earthquake left a lot of open questions. Before the earthquake, seismological personnel in Tangshan and quake experts in Beijing had already warned of an imminent quake. But in the end, more than 240,000 people had to pay with their lives, causing a shocking tragedy of massive proportions. Why did this happen? In the 2008 Wenchuan Earthquake about 100,000 people were killed. Faced with terrible quakes, the human race repeats tragedy time and time again. It is terrible that people can only offer money and bland tears after the disaster – when better preparation could have saved lives. A nation has to courageously face its own weakness to remain hopeful.

The film has been cut into 11 videos and posted on Youtube which you can find from following link:

http://www.youtube.com/user/syd1039#p/u/12/ssnaL35-CL0

Video 1: (With English and Chinese caption)

All 11 pieces of the video can be found from:

http://www.youtube.com/user/syd1039#p/u/12/ssnaL35-CL0

Posted in China, Commentary, disaster, earthquake, history, News, People, Politics, Science, Social, TV / film, Video, World | 4 Comments »

Death Toll Rises As Rainstorms Devastate Southern China (photo)

Posted by Author on May 10, 2010


By Shanshan Wu, Epoch Times Staff –

On May 7, Guangdong experienced heavy rains that submerged thousands of cars under water. (The Epoch Times Archive)

Since May 5, heavy rainstorms have been causing destruction and mudslides in the provinces of southern China, including Sichuan, Hunan, Jiangxi, and Guangdong. As of this report, 86 people are dead or missing. The rainstorms have affected millions of people, displacing about 250,000, and damaging nearly 10,000 houses.

The “most powerful rainstorm in Guangdong history” began on the night of May 6, and 16 people there have died with 4 still missing. After a mere few hours of heavy rain in Guangdong, over 30 parking garages are flooded and thousands of cars lie beneath the water level. A worker at a property company in Longkou District in the city of Guangzhou told the Information Times, “Last night (May 6) we had to stuff the entrances of the underground parking garage with sandbags, but the rain came so hard. It was just like a waterfall.”…… (more details from The Epochtimes)

Posted in China, disaster, Flood, Life, News, South China, World | Comments Off on Death Toll Rises As Rainstorms Devastate Southern China (photo)

Hand, foot and mouth disease spreads early in China, killing 260 children so far this year

Posted by Author on May 7, 2010


Canadian Press, May. 7, 2010 –

BEIJING, China — Hand, foot and mouth disease, a virus that usually peaks during the hot months, has already killed 260 children in China this year and sickened hundreds of thousands more, the government said Friday.

Every spring and summer China sees deadly outbreaks of the disease, which typically infects infants and children, particularly in rural areas where hygiene is poor. Most cases are mild, with children recovering quickly after suffering little more than a fever and rash.

But the disease has struck earlier than normal this year, and by May 4 the number of deaths reported were 143 per cent higher than the same period last year, said Xiao Donglou, the Health Ministry’s deputy director of disease control and prevention, according to the Beijing News. An official with the ministry’s press section confirmed the accuracy of the figures reported.

Hand, foot and mouth disease is characterized by fever, mouth sores and a rash with blisters. It is spread by direct contact with nose and throat discharges, saliva, fluid from blisters, or the stool of infected people. It is unrelated to the foot and mouth disease that affects livestock.

Nearly 430,000 children have been sickened by the disease so far this year while severe cases have jumped by two-thirds to 5,454, the report cited Xiao as saying. Last year, there were 353 deaths from the disease, according to Health Ministry figures……. (Canidian Press)

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One baby with syphilis born every hour in China: study

Posted by Author on May 6, 2010


AFP, May 6, 2010-

HONG KONG
— One child was born with syphilis every hour in China in 2008, researchers said Thursday, as new money from the country’s growing economy fuels the world’s fastest-growing epidemic of the disease.

Syphilis was almost wiped out in China 50 years ago, but it is now the most commonly reported sexually transmitted disease in Shanghai, according to an article in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM).

Female sex workers and homosexual men are driving the infection rate, the researchers said, and there is evidence that social pressures are discouraging people from seeking treatment at official clinics.

“After China’s economy became increasingly market-based in the 1980s, the growing numbers of Chinese businessmen with money and young women without money translated into expanded demand and supply for the country’s commercial sex industry,” the article said.

Syphilis is a bacterial infection which can easily be tackled with antibiotics if diagnosed early, but if left untreated can lead to paralysis, blindness and death.

No other country has seen such a rapid rise in syphilis cases since the discovery of penicillin, the researchers said.

Social stigma discourages the groups worst affected by the Chinese epidemic — prostitutes and gay and bisexual men — from seeking proper care, the article said.

In China, at least a third of men who have sex with other men are also married and the transmission of syphilis to their wives and children is an important issue, the article said…….(AFP)

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Official Earthquake Death Toll Underreported

Posted by Author on April 25, 2010


By April 22, the official earthquake death toll in northwest China’s remote Yushu, in Qinghai Province, is listed as only 2,187, but local people claim that number is dramatically underreported.

Qinghai Jiegu Temple abbot Angwen Danbarenqing told The Epoch Times that most of his monks were spared from the disaster, and they devoted themselves to rescue work almost immediately after the quake.

“By the third day, the dead were collected for cremation together. More than 2,300 bodies were burned, and more corpses will arrive here soon. I have looked around in different places and think the death toll will reach 8,000 to 9,000,” he said.

However, a Qinghai Yushu Relief Headquarters report lists the death toll at 2,187 with 80 missing and 12,135 injured, including 1,434 severely injured. This report was issued at 5 p.m. on April 22.

Besides Tibetan victims, many migrant workers from the Han and Hui races were killed in the quake. A local rescuer said that the local regime did not count them among the death toll because these people normally live in poor conditions.

Another local rescuer named Zeng said that many migrant workers from neighboring Sichuan Province also died, and their bodies have been transported to their homes.

“The situation is so bad,” Zeng said. “We don’t understand why the media have not come here to report. Many people have no food and no place to stay, particularly the Tibetans. I saw many monks carrying out rescue work by digging in the snow.”

According to rescuers, no official earthquake relief teams appeared in many of the severely affected counties, although Beijing’s media repeatedly announced that rescue materials were continually shipped to the disaster regions.

Moreover, official rescue efforts were only organized in town centers where government facilities, schools, and shop buildings are located. The countryside has been left to fend for itself for several days. Abbot Angwen Danbarenqing added, “We have a lot of people here who were severely affected by the quake. There is a shortage of supplies to help them.”

According to official data, the population of Yushu is 100,000, including 40,000 in Jiegu County and 60,000 in surrounding rural areas. (The Epochtimes)

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Photos by Google Earth: Pre- and post-quake in qinghai, China

Posted by Author on April 19, 2010


Google Blog

Pre and post-earthquake images of Qinghai, China

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Shocking Photos: Fish Left in the Cracked Dry Mud During the Drought in China

Posted by Author on April 18, 2010


The drought in south China’s Yunnan Province has lasted for more than 4 months. According to the weather forecast, there will not be any measurable rain in the coming days.

Following photos show a shocking sight at the Degehaizi Reservoir in Damogu Town of Luliang County, Yunnan Province, south China– fishes stuck in the dried land, with their mouths open wide, dead in their struggling position.

The Degehaizi Reservoir in Damogu Town of Luliang County, once with a capacity of 1.6 million cubic meters of water, is now arid dry. The palm-wide cracks were a stunning sight. Some of the cracks are as much as half a meter deep. Fish can be found stuck in the dried land, with their mouths open wide, dead in their struggling position.

Arid dry Degehaizi Reservoir in Yunnan Province, palm-wide cracks, with mouth-open fish stuck in.

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After Quake, Ethnic Tibetans Distrust China Government’s Help

Posted by Author on April 17, 2010


By ANDREW JACOBS, New York Times, April 17, 2010-

JIEGU, China — The Buddhist monks stood atop the jagged remains of a vocational school, struggling to move concrete slabs with pickax shovels and bare hands. Suddenly a cry went out: An arm, clearly lifeless, was poking through the debris.

But before the monks could finish their task, a group of Chinese soldiers who had been relaxing on the school grounds sprang to action. They put on their army caps, waved the monks away, and with a video camera for their unit rolling, quickly extricated the body of a young girl.

The monks stifled their rage and stood below, mumbling a Tibetan prayer for the dead.

“You won’t see the cameras while we are working,” said one of the monks, Ga Tsai, who with 200 others, had driven from their lamasery in Sichuan Province as soon as they heard about the quake.

“We want to save lives. They see this tragedy as an opportunity to make propaganda.”

Since a deadly earthquake nearly flattened this predominantly Tibetan city early Wednesday, killing at least 1,400 people, China’s leadership has treated the quake as a dual emergency — a humanitarian crisis almost three miles above sea level in remote Qinghai Province, and a fresh test of the Communist Party’s ability to keep a lid on dissent among restive Tibetans. …… (new York Times)

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Western China Quakes Kill at Least 300 in Qinghai Province

Posted by Author on April 14, 2010


A magnitude 7.1 temblor struck shortly before 8 a.m. in a remote, mountainous area near the border between China’s Qinghai province and the Tibet Autonomous Region, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

The U.S. Geological Survey said it recorded a 6.9 magnitude quake in southern Qinghai followed by two other temblors in the region.

In Yushu prefecture, an area predominantly inhabited by ethnic Tibetans, witnesses said that many houses had collapsed, according to state media. The prefecture has a population of about 252,000 people, about 97% of whom are Tibetan.

A prefecture official quoted by Xinhua said that in the town of Jiegu near the quake’s epicenter, more than 85% of houses had been knocked down by the quake. Rescuers were digging through the ruble by hand to try to find survivors, Xinhua said.

“Many are buried in the collapsed houses, and there are still lots of others who are injured and being treated at local hospitals,” the local official, Zhuohuaxia told Xinhua. He said local authorities needed excavating equipment and medical supplies.

Guo Yang, a resident of Jiegu interviewed by phone, said: “It is the most devastating thing I’ve ever seen.” Mr. Guo said nearly all the homes in the town had collapsed. “We are busy with rescuing people who are trapped,” he said.

Hundreds of People’s Armed Police were on the scene searching collapsed buildings and thousands more rescuers had been dispatched to the area, state media said.

Earthquakes are a frequent occurrence on the Tibetan plateau, but there are usually few casualties because the area is so sparsely populated. A massive earthquake in May 2008 in Sichuan, in southwestern China, however, left nearly 90,000 people dead or missing. (The Wall Street Journal)

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