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...

I don’t want Taiwan to become the next Hong Kong...We have to use our votes to guarantee the democracy and freedom of our home.”

- Chen Yi-wen, a 28-year-old waitress in Taipei

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Netizens Call Out Propaganda on U.S.-Iran Tensions

With U.S.-Iran tensions high following the Trump administration’s January 3 assassination of Iranian Major General Qassim Suleimani, and retaliatory Iranian missile strikes against U.S. military bases in Iraq on January 7, some domestic Chinese online news media faced criticism for spreading misleading rumors about the situation. A January 7 article published on Sohu News (and since deleted), with the byline “FeixiangMeishiJie” (飞翔美食街, literally “Soaring Over Gourmet Street”) suggested that war may be imminent. CDT has translated the relevant paragraphs from the...

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HRW Report: China an Increasing “Global Threat to Human Rights”

Human Rights Watch has released their 30th annual “World Report” review of human rights by country. In the introduction to this year’s report, HRW Executive Director Kenneth Roth wrote on the global threat to human rights that China’s government poses, warning that if left unchallenged, “Beijing’s actions portend a dystopian future in which no one is beyond the reach of Chinese censors, and an international human rights system so weakened that it no longer serves as a check on government repression.” (HRW examined China’s efforts toward that end in a...

Netizens Call Out Propaganda on U.S.-Iran Tensions

With U.S.-Iran tensions high following the Trump administration’s January 3 assassination of Iranian Major General Qassim Suleimani, and retaliatory Iranian missile strikes against U.S. military bases in Iraq on January 7, some domestic Chinese online news media faced criticism for spreading misleading rumors about the situation. A January 7 article published on Sohu News (and since deleted), with the byline “FeixiangMeishiJie” (飞翔美食街, literally “Soaring Over Gourmet Street”) suggested that war may be imminent. CDT has translated the relevant paragraphs from the...

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...

Human Rights Watch Director Barred from Hong Kong, as Protesters Celebrate Taiwan Election

Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, was barred entry to Hong Kong, where he planned to hold a press conference to release the organization’s annual report. Officials offered no reason for the move. I flew to Hong Kong to release @HRW’s new World Report. This year it describes how the Chinese government is undermining the international human rights system. But the authorities just blocked my entrance to Hong Kong, illustrating the worsening problem. https://t.co/GRUaGh8QUb pic.twitter.com/iTHVEXdbwO— Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth) January 12, 2020 Despite my probing,...

Sino-U.S. Tech Rivalry Continues Despite Trade Deal

U.S. measures against China’s burgeoning tech sector are set to continue despite an anticipated truce in the two countries’ ongoing trade war, The Wall Street Journal’s Bob Davis and Katy Stech Ferek reported on Tuesday. [Updated at 12:54:05 PM PST on Jan 15, 2020: Some details of the agreement have now been announced.] Should all the efforts bear fruit, nearly any technology exports to Huawei in particular, and China in general, would require export licenses. While Commerce could grant such licenses, U.S. companies fear their Chinese customers would turn to other...

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...

China’s Birthrate Hits Record Low, Sharpening Economic Concerns

In 2015, the Chinese government reformed its infamous “one-child policy” to allow two births for most couples, hoping that it would address a looming demographic crisis by boosting the nation’s birthrate. However, a major birth boom did not follow, due in part to many of China’s educated urban elite considering the rising costs of living an obstacle to raising a second child. In 2018, the omission of all references to “family planning” in the draft civil code hinted that birth restrictions may be dropped entirely. According to official statistics published...

China’s Birthrate Hits Record Low, Sharpening Economic Concerns

In 2015, the Chinese government reformed its infamous “one-child policy” to allow two births for most couples, hoping that it would address a looming demographic crisis by boosting the nation’s birthrate. However, a major birth boom did not follow, due in part to many of China’s educated urban elite considering the rising costs of living an obstacle to raising a second child. In 2018, the omission of all references to “family planning” in the draft civil code hinted that birth restrictions may be dropped entirely. According to official statistics published...

Sino-U.S. Tech Rivalry Continues Despite Trade Deal

U.S. measures against China’s burgeoning tech sector are set to continue despite an anticipated truce in the two countries’ ongoing trade war, The Wall Street Journal’s Bob Davis and Katy Stech Ferek reported on Tuesday. [Updated at 12:54:05 PM PST on Jan 15, 2020: Some details of the agreement have now been announced.] Should all the efforts bear fruit, nearly any technology exports to Huawei in particular, and China in general, would require export licenses. While Commerce could grant such licenses, U.S. companies fear their Chinese customers would turn to other...

U.S. Commission Calls Xinjiang Detentions “Crime Against Humanity”

In their annual report assessing human rights conditions in China in 2019, the Congressional-Executive Commission on China called the detention of Uyghurs in Xinjiang a “crime against humanity,” while also presenting findings and recommendations on a host of other human rights issues including freedom of expression, workers’ rights, women’s rights, the ongoing protest movement in Hong Kong, civil society, Tibet, and more. From their Executive Summary: During its 2019 reporting year, the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (Commission) found that the human...

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

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...

Human Rights

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Pastor Wang Yi Sentenced to Nine Years in Prison for Subversion

Pastor Wang Yi, the founder of the underground Early Rain Covenant Church and staunch critic of Xi Jinping’s heavy-handed policies, has been sentenced to nine years in prison for “subversion of state power” and illegal business operations. Wang was one of over 100 members of the Early Rain Covenant detained in Chengdu last December as part of a crackdown on unregistered churches, mosques, and temples–itself part of a broader campaign to “Sinicize” religion in China. Wang’s wife, Jiang Rong, was also detained in the roundup on suspicion of “inciting...

Society

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Beijing’s Aggression, Influence, and Disinformation Target Taiwan Election

Taiwan’s population is preparing to vote in national presidential and legislative elections on Saturday. At The New York Times, Steven Lee Myers and Chris Horton report on how Chinese aggression has significantly bolstered the chances of incumbent President Tsai Ing-wen by turning the election into a public referendum on democracy and Taiwanese self-governance. One year ago, President Tsai’s popularity had fallen drastically, clearly represented in her Democratic Progressive Party’s losses in local elections and her subsequent resignation as party leader. Since then, her...

China & the World

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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...

Law

Latest

U.S. Commission Calls Xinjiang Detentions “Crime Against Humanity”

In their annual report assessing human rights conditions in China in 2019, the Congressional-Executive Commission on China called the detention of Uyghurs in Xinjiang a “crime against humanity,” while also presenting findings and recommendations on a host of other human rights issues including freedom of expression, workers’ rights, women’s rights, the ongoing protest movement in Hong Kong, civil society, Tibet, and more. From their Executive Summary: During its 2019 reporting year, the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (Commission) found that the human...

Information Revolution

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TikTok CEO to Visit Washington Amid Privacy Lawsuits, Censorship Fears

Short video platform TikTok’s enormous popularity among young Westerners, together with its ownership by Beijing-based AI entertainment firm Bytedance, has brought steadily mounting scrutiny in recent months. Critics suggest that the parent company’s susceptibility to Chinese government pressure could bleed over to TikTok, with censorship flowing outward and sensitive user data flowing back. With U.S. legislators circling and a national security review on the way, the company has been stepping up its lobbying and PR efforts in response. The Washington Post’s Tony Romm and...

Culture & the Arts

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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

Sino-U.S. Tech Rivalry Continues Despite Trade Deal

U.S. measures against China’s burgeoning tech sector are set to continue despite an anticipated truce in the two countries’ ongoing trade war, The Wall Street Journal’s Bob Davis and Katy Stech Ferek reported on Tuesday. [Updated at 12:54:05 PM PST on Jan 15, 2020: Some details of the agreement have now been announced.] Should all the efforts bear fruit, nearly any technology exports to Huawei in particular, and China in general, would require export licenses. While Commerce could grant such licenses, U.S. companies fear their Chinese customers would turn to other...

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

Human Rights Watch Director Barred from Hong Kong, as Protesters Celebrate Taiwan Election

Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, was barred entry to Hong Kong, where he planned to hold a press conference to release the organization’s annual report. Officials offered no reason for the move. I flew to Hong Kong to release @HRW’s new World Report. This year it describes how the Chinese government is undermining the international human rights system. But the authorities just blocked my entrance to Hong Kong, illustrating the worsening problem. https://t.co/GRUaGh8QUb pic.twitter.com/iTHVEXdbwO— Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth) January 12, 2020 Despite my probing,...

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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