Skip to content

Mandatory Collection of Male DNA Data in China

Many local governments in China are planning or have started collecting citizen DNA data. Following Xinjiang, Ningbo in Zhejiang province, and Anqing in Anhui province, the police in Guilin city of Guangxi province recently issued a notice to local residents that they would collect male DNA samples. In the week of September 20, a police branch in Guilin issued a “Notice on Collecting DNA Information from Male Family Blood Samples” to the residents. The purpose was “to complete the basic information task of public security, comprehensively improve the control and management of the population, and improve the capability to serve the people.” Between September 20 and December 31, the local police will visit the residential areas and collect blood samples from male residents. At least one male in every household has to have his blood sample collected.

The police already started collecting human biological data, such as DNA and iris data, from residents in Xinjiang as early as 2017. The media reported that, in a village in Jiangxi Province, police officers also visited door to door to collect male blood samples from every family, one from adults and one from children. The villagers are required to fill out the “DNA Database Personnel Information Form.”

The Chinese police have reportedly stored about 100 million DNA samples from the population and the figure keeps growing. Petitioners, people who seek justice and want to travel to Beijing to have their issues addressed, will be forced to undergo blood tests once they are taken to the police station. When this happened in the past, they only found out later that the police were extracting DNA data from their blood. Arrested dissidents or activists in recent years have also experienced forced blood tests. However, the Chinese government has never explicitly announced the actual purpose of establishing a DNA database in a compulsory or semi-mandatory manner.

Source: Radio Free Asia, September 26, 2019