Xi Jinping "knows that reforms must be made to keep the party in power,” says Maya Wang, a researcher with Human Rights Watch in China. “But he does not want them to be diverted, or seen as the result of the demands of civil society."Beijing, China - August 11, 2014 - Chinese censorship knows no limits. On Wednesday, July 8, the Press Authority of the Communist Party announced that President Xi Jinping has adopted new regulations banning reporters, already forbidden from discussing "sensitive" subjects, from disclosing "state secrets, commercial secrets and non-official information" and are "banned from writing articles expressing criticism, unless they have been approved by the work unit concerned."
This new blow to civil liberties in mainland China is the result of the
attempted intimidation by the Party against Apple Daily, one of the
major newspapers in Hong Kong. Beijing has not appreciated the support
given by the newspaper to Occupy Central, the pro-democracy movement
born in 2011, which has demanded an election by universal suffrage of
the chief executive of the administrative region of Hong Kong in 2017.
The new regulations do not apply, however, to the former British colony,
where the freedom of opinion, the press and publication are protected
by Article 27 of the Basic Law and Article 16 of the Declaration of
human rights in Hong Kong.
The intense increase in the Chinese government repression of
communication and freedom of expression for the past several months has
inspired bloggers, journalists, lawyers and activists in China to
exercise caution and discretion. According to Joseph Cheng, an expert on
Chinese politics at the City University of Hong Kong, "the dispute and
the development of civil society are in general no longer tolerated."
The latest example of repression was the arrest in July in mainland
China of seven militants accused of "causing agitation" by organizing a
ceremony for the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen crackdown. Joseph
Cheng believes that these government measures have been effective. The
psychological impact on people is felt in the forced silence of the
Chinese media and social networks.
The ruling Communist Party has always exercised strict control over
Chinese society. But observers have reported a new crackdown under Xi
Jinping, at the head of the party since 2012 and the state since the
beginning of 2013, which has strengthened central government while
announcing an agenda of ambitious economic reforms.
Chinese Government Tightens Noose of Censorship on CSO
Beijing, Beijing, China