Hong Kong Bookseller Gui Minhai Sentenced to 10 Years

Swedish citizen Gui Minhai is one of the five booksellers and publishers associated with Hong Kong’s Mighty Current Media and Causeway Bay bookstore who were detained from abroad in 2015 to reappear in custody in China. The episode heightened concerns about Beijing’s willingness to target foreign nationals and conduct cross-border detentions to dissuade criticism. Gui’s location was unknown until he appeared on CCTV in January 2016 making a forced confession. The other four detained publishers have since been released and returned to Hong Kong, with one relocating to Taiwan. Gui was...

Spare me recognition for work injury, martyrdom, or any other merits
I didn’t come to Wuhan to admire the cherry blossoms
...I just want to return home safe when the epidemic ends
Even if all that remains are my bones

- Wuhan nurse and poet Wei Shuiyin

CDT Highlights

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Translation: Poems From a Wuhan Nurse

The following poetry collection was written by “Wei Shuiyin” (弱水吟, given name Long Qiaoling 龙巧玲), who has been serving as a nurse in one of the dozen makeshift fangcang hospitals set up in Wuhan to combat the COVID-19 coronavirus epidemic. Long is a usually based at Shandan County People’s Hospital in Gansu Province; since the outbreak of the coronavirus, she has been fighting on the frontline of prevention and control along with her colleagues. When she received news that Wuhan was in urgent need of medical workers, she volunteered to go to Wuhan with a medical team. The...

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Hong Kong Bookseller Gui Minhai Sentenced to 10 Years

Swedish citizen Gui Minhai is one of the five booksellers and publishers associated with Hong Kong’s Mighty Current Media and Causeway Bay bookstore who were detained from abroad in 2015 to reappear in custody in China. The episode heightened concerns about Beijing’s willingness to target foreign nationals and conduct cross-border detentions to dissuade criticism. Gui’s location was unknown until he appeared on CCTV in January 2016 making a forced confession. The other four detained publishers have since been released and returned to Hong Kong, with one relocating to Taiwan. Gui was...

Translation: Poems From a Wuhan Nurse

The following poetry collection was written by “Wei Shuiyin” (弱水吟, given name Long Qiaoling 龙巧玲), who has been serving as a nurse in one of the dozen makeshift fangcang hospitals set up in Wuhan to combat the COVID-19 coronavirus epidemic. Long is a usually based at Shandan County People’s Hospital in Gansu Province; since the outbreak of the coronavirus, she has been fighting on the frontline of prevention and control along with her colleagues. When she received news that Wuhan was in urgent need of medical workers, she volunteered to go to Wuhan with a medical team. The...

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Activist Huang Xueqin Released From Detention

Journalist and activist Sophia Huang Xueqin was released on Saturday, three months after her detention by Guangzhou police. She was transferred to the notorious “residential surveillance” system in November, and appeared to be facing as much as five years in prison for “picking quarrels and provoking trouble.” CDT last month translated one of Huang’s last posts before her detention, a reflection on sustainable activism inspired by Yale historian Timothy Snyder’s book “On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century.” From South China Morning Post’s Laurie Chen,...

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Q&A: Leta Hong Fincher on China’s Resilient Feminists

A former journalist, Leta Hong Fincher was the first American to receive a PhD in Sociology from Tsinghua University in Beijing. Her research there led to her first book, “Leftover Women: The Resurgence of Gender Inequality in China,” which examined rising gender inequalities in China today through the lens of economics, marriage, and the real estate market. Her widely acclaimed second book, “Betraying Big Brother: The Feminist Awakening in China,” examines the rise of a new feminist movement in China and profiles several of the key participants, including the...

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Activist Xu Zhiyong Detained After 50 Days in Hiding

Activist and lawyer Xu Zhiyong has been detained, almost two months after he went missing following a police round-up of several activists on December 26. For the past 50 days, Xu has been in hiding, though he has continued publishing his writing on his blog, including a February 4 letter criticizing Xi Jinping for his handling of the coronavirus outbreak. Emily Feng reports for NPR: Friends of Xu Zhiyong confirmed to NPR that Xu was arrested at around 6 p.m. local time on Feb. 15 in the Panyu district of Guangzhou, a major metropolis in the south of China. Xu had managed to evade...

China Announces New Changes on “Original Sin” of Residency Controls

Bloomberg’s Sharon Chen and Dandan Li provide an overview of recent changes to China’s hukou residency permit system, which for decades has tightly controlled citizens’ rights to settle and receive public services away from their registered home areas. President Xi Jinping has made overhauling the hukou a key policy goal and even argued for abolishing it altogether in his doctoral thesis almost two decades ago. A policy statement issued on Dec. 25 by the State Council, China’s cabinet, included a pledge to eliminate the registration system in cities with fewer than 3...

Politics

Latest

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Human Rights

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Netizens Demand Free Speech After Death of Disciplined Wuhan Doctor

Dr. Li Wenliang was one of eight initially unnamed “rumormongers” whose punishments for “spreading illegal and false information” about the coronavirus outbreak were used by Wuhan authorities and state media as warnings to the public. The revelation last week that all eight were frontline health workers in Wuhan trying to warn others about the disease added fuel to public anger about the official response to the crisis. When Li later became infected by the virus, authorities ordered coverage of the news offline. While in the hospital, Li accepted interviews with...

Society

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CDT Censorship Digest, January 2020: Wuhan Coronavirus Outbreak

In January 2020, CDT Chinese editors posted their first monthly summary of censorship, launching the CDT Censorship Digest series. The series will collect and quote from news and online speech that was censored by Chinese authorities during the previous month, as well as efforts to preserve and strengthen freedom of speech in Chinese society. When relevant to CDT English readers, we will translate the Chinese series in part or in full. Unless otherwise noted [in ellipses], all links in this translation are to Chinese sources.  CDT Chinese | Chinese Censorship Digest, January 2020:...

China & the World

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Minitrue: Delete Article on Economic Impact of WHO Declaring Coronavirus an “Emergency”

The following censorship instructions, issued to the media by government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online. The name of the issuing body has been omitted to protect the source. All websites delete the Sanlian Life Week article “How will China’s Economy be Impacted if the WHO Gets Involved With the Coronavirus Epidemic?” Do not continue republishing commentary. (January 29, 2020) [Chinese] The article, published by state-owned weekly news magazine Sanlian Life Week (三联生活周刊), which has been translated in full by CDT, examined the potential economic impact that...

Law

Latest

Activist Xu Zhiyong Detained After 50 Days in Hiding

Activist and lawyer Xu Zhiyong has been detained, almost two months after he went missing following a police round-up of several activists on December 26. For the past 50 days, Xu has been in hiding, though he has continued publishing his writing on his blog, including a February 4 letter criticizing Xi Jinping for his handling of the coronavirus outbreak. Emily Feng reports for NPR: Friends of Xu Zhiyong confirmed to NPR that Xu was arrested at around 6 p.m. local time on Feb. 15 in the Panyu district of Guangzhou, a major metropolis in the south of China. Xu had managed to evade...

Information Revolution

Latest

Translation: “Wuhan Police Said Don’t Post, I Laughed With Tears in My Eyes”

The practice of containing information not approved by the government has long been commonplace in China, and has steadily intensified both in traditional media and online under the leadership of Xi Jinping. Amid a global focus on China’s reaction to the novel coronavirus that originated in Wuhan and has so far infected (by the official count, which some have questioned) 28,000 people and killed 563 in China, commentators have blamed China’s rigid autocracy as a cause of the outbreak and its quick spread. Many have pointed directly to the systemic use of censorship as a major...

Culture & the Arts

Latest

Netizen Voices: “Cultural Fusion Should be Based on Mutual Consent”

Amid an ongoing crackdown on Uyghur culture in Xinjiang that has been called an effort to “re-engineer” the Uyghur identity and as a form of “cultural genocide,” state-run new media outlet The Paper (澎湃) this week tweeted a video report titled “Notes From Aiding the Border: Where is Green Tea Produced? Xinjiang Children Had no Answer.” The video showed how teachers from the Shanghai Hanweiyang Traditional Culture Promotion Center were teaching “traditional Chinese culture” to primary school students in Bachu County, Kashgar, Xinjiang: A #Shanghai teacher brings...

The Great Divide

Latest

China Announces New Changes on “Original Sin” of Residency Controls

Bloomberg’s Sharon Chen and Dandan Li provide an overview of recent changes to China’s hukou residency permit system, which for decades has tightly controlled citizens’ rights to settle and receive public services away from their registered home areas. President Xi Jinping has made overhauling the hukou a key policy goal and even argued for abolishing it altogether in his doctoral thesis almost two decades ago. A policy statement issued on Dec. 25 by the State Council, China’s cabinet, included a pledge to eliminate the registration system in cities with fewer than 3...

Sci-Tech

Latest

Moves to Restrict Huawei Supplies Continue, Despite Trump Shift

Reuters’ Karen Freifeld and Mike Stone report on continued efforts to restrict the supply of American components to Huawei, despite a series of tweets last week in which President Donald Trump spoke dismissively about the national security implications of such sales. The comments were the latest twist in a long-running U.S. campaign against Huawei. An interagency meeting was held on Thursday to discuss national security and China export issues, including proposals to restrict sales of chips to Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker, and a plan to block the sale of jet...

Environment

Latest

The Costs of the Belt and Road Initiative

Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative, a trillion dollar-plus global trade and development program that was unveiled in 2013 and enshrined into the Party constitution in 2017, has attracted both international excitement and concern. While Beijing touts the plan as a “win-win” for global trade and cooperative economic growth that will usher in a new era of globalization, the massively ambitious initiative has also raised a host of concerns over its aim to expand Beijing’s global military and political influence, country-specific security issues, and looming debt traps that could arise from...

Hong Kong

Latest

Activist Huang Xueqin Released From Detention

Journalist and activist Sophia Huang Xueqin was released on Saturday, three months after her detention by Guangzhou police. She was transferred to the notorious “residential surveillance” system in November, and appeared to be facing as much as five years in prison for “picking quarrels and provoking trouble.” CDT last month translated one of Huang’s last posts before her detention, a reflection on sustainable activism inspired by Yale historian Timothy Snyder’s book “On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century.” From South China Morning Post’s Laurie Chen,...

Taiwan

Latest

Tsai Ing-wen Reelected in Taiwan in Historic Victory

Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen was decisively reelected on Saturday in an election that had become a referendum on democratic freedoms and Taiwanese autonomy. Winning 57 percent of the vote against Kuomintang challenger Han Kuo-yu, Tsai, of the Democratic Progressive Party, had seen her popularity surge in recent months as voters contended with a coordinated disinformation and propaganda campaign from Beijing and concerns over encroaching Chinese government control in Hong Kong. Thank you, Taiwan. pic.twitter.com/SZVSOtJtT4 — 蔡英文 Tsai Ing-wen (@iingwen) January 11, 2020 At The...

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