The Xinjiang government has passed a new regulation banning online discussion of separatism there. There has been no Internet access in Urumqi and other parts of Xinjiang since the riots on July 5. From AFP:
The bill passed by Xinjiang’s standing committee bans people in the region from using the Internet in any way that undermines national unity, incites ethnic separatism or harms social stability, the China News Service reported.
The bill requires Xinjiang’s Internet service providers and network operators to set up monitoring systems — or strengthen existing ones — and report anyone who breaks the law, the report said.
The bill did not specify what punishment offenders would face, but its apparent aim is to allow authorities to arrest individuals behind e-mails, web postings and sharing of media within the region that they deem to be a threat.
“The introduction of the ‘Information Promotion Bill’ is timely and necessary,” the report quoted the bill as saying. “It ensures Internet criminals can be quickly and effectively controlled in the future.”
See also a China Daily report.