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Mainland Chinese Media on Protest in Tibet

According to the  Hong Kong-based Apple Daily, as of March 15, the second day of reported protests in  Tibet, Mainland Chinese news media outlets were mostly silent about it. The official Xinhua news agency only reported on the protests on its English site.  At one point, Xinhua reported shooting by local police on its English site, but soon took the notice down.

Chinese Central Television (CCTV) aired some video footage about Tibet on its evening news on March 15, which only contained scenes of a group of young people burning stores or attacking civilians. It did not mention an earlier peaceful demonstration or the arrest of protesters by the local police. CCTV’s evening news called the protest “a riot that was carefully organized by Dalai Lama with the intention of damaging social stability.”

In the afternoon of March 15, major mainland Chinese websites and newspapers started to carry an article by Xinhua titled “Q&A issued by officials of the Tibet Autonomous Region about a small group of people creating social disorder” but the web link for posting comments was disabled.

Source: Boxun, March 16, 2008

Tibetan Organizations: Beijing May Have Staged Street Riots

According to the website Tibetan Pages, overseas Tibetan organizations warned the international community not to be taken in by March 14 street violence staged by Beijing, citing the lesson they learned from the 1989 Lhasa protest when “Communists sent 300 state agents into Lhasa disguised as residents and monks to cooperate with the plain clothed police from the public security bureau” by burning and ransacking stores. The website was created at the request of the Dalai Lama.

Those who participated in last week’s violence have until midnight March 17 to surrender, said a joint notice issued by the Chinese-controlled Tibetan government police and judicial authorities. The notice was issued a day after the city erupted in riots against China’s control of the Himalayan region, with crowds setting fire to businesses and vehicles.

Source: Tibetan Pages, March 16, 2008
China Tibet Information Center, March 15, 2008

Violations of State’s Planned Parenthood Policy

According to the Gansu Provincial Population and Family Planning Work Conference 2007, 2,718 Party members who are government officials have more children than allowed under the Planned Parenthood policy. 2,191 of them have been reprimanded by the Party or received administrative disciplinary actions. In 2008, those who violate Planned Parenthood policy cannot be promoted or nominated as Party delegates and National Congress members. In 1979 The Chinese government introduced the one-child policy to curb population growth.

Source: Xinhua, March 13, 2008

Veteran Chinese Journalist Calls for Direct Elections and Freedom of Assembly

Radio Free Asia reports that Chinese veteran journalist, writer, and scholar Lin Changzhou published an open letter to top Chinese leaders through Radio Free Asia during the “Two Conferences (National People’s Congress and Political Consultative Conferences),” calling for direct elections and freedom of assembly, as well as pursuing a renaissance of national fundamental values. The 41-year-old Lin was the former deputy editor of the newspaper BEIJING DAILY MESSENGER.

Source: Radio Free Asia, March 10, 2008

Olympics: Beijing Arrests Falun Gong Practitioners Ahead of Games

On March 5, 2008, Falun Gong’s official website Minghui published a list of over 50 Falun Gong practitioners in Beijing who were arrested since December 2007. According to the report, the police began monitoring and following them as early as August 2007 in an attempt to limit efforts to expose the persecution of Falun Gong in the run-up to the Olympics.

Source: Minghui, March 5, 2008

Foreign Journalist Detained. China’s Pledge For Free Reporting Questioned.

In the afternoon of February 27, Mark Maginier, the Beijing bureau chief with the Los Angeles Times, and his translator were taken away by the personnel from the public security bureau. At the time, Mark was speaking with the petitioners living in the Shou Bao village of Da Xing district of Beijing, a newly established petitioners’ village. Mark told Radio Free Asia that he was taken away for over an hour and was questioned who he was speaking with and what kind of report he will write about.

Mark’s arrest raised concerns over Beijing’s promise. On December 1, 2006, China promised that the foreign reporters, whether assigned permanently or visiting for the Olympics, will be allowed to travel most of the country freely and report without interference by local police or propaganda officials from Jan. 1, 2007, until Oct. 17, 2008.

Source: Radio Free Asia, February 27, 2008