The Lifan Landslide

Roland Soong of ESWN translates an article on the Oriental Outlook‘s . Sun is known for reporting that man-made factors were ignored in the original assessment of the Lifan landslide disaster in .

Q: How was your attention drawn to the incident?
A: I read the report about this incident and my first reaction was to wonder whether there was a cover-up. At the Lifan post bar on the Internet, people claimed that the number of deaths was being covered up. My friends in Shanxi also said that. So I traveled to Lifan to investigate. My colleague Wang Xiao worked with me from Beijing.

Q: Can you tell us what sort of difficulties and obstacles you encountered during your investigation?
A: The local government had set up some stern measures. If they should find out that I am a reporter, I would be ‘invited’ to leave Lifan.
I got off several hundred meters before the inspection station for vehicles, and I entered Lifan on foot. After I got in, I lived on work grounds. During the entire process, I was undercover. On the road to the scene of the incident, there were three roadblocks to check people. I had to take detours and walk around the roadblocks in order to reach the scene.

October 10, 2008 6:01 PM
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