The HRIC Daily Brief is a daily selection of news stories and commentary related to human rights in China, drawn from Chinese- and English-language news and online media sources that we monitor daily. In addition to headlines and source links, HRIC also provides English translation of Chinese headlines.

Monday, January 31, 2005

January 29-31, 2005

Top news of the day

June 4th – prisoners – Zhao Ziyuan (趙紫陽)
Former June 4th student leader Ma Shaofang (馬少方) missing on his way to Beijing
进京悼念赵紫阳 前天安门学生领袖马少方失踪
Radio Free Asia, January 30, 2005
Former June 4th student leader Ma Shaofang (馬少方) reported missing on his way to pay respect to Zhao in Beijing. A human right group alleged that Ma, alongside at least 4 other dissidents, has been arrested by the authority.

Public health – HIV aids / Government – governance and accountability
Pair punished over HIV spread
SCMP, January 29, 2005
Two former public health officials in Inner Mongolia are convicted of dereliction of duty which led to 11 people got infected with aids. This is the first time government officials held responsible for aids spread.

Bilaterals - US/China

Chinese, US ministries hold 1st special policy dialogue in Beijing
Xinhua News Agency, 31 January 2005
The first special policy dialogue between the Chinese Ministry of Defense and its US counterpart began here Monday, reflecting warming ties between the two major military powers.

Grassroots NGOs on children issues on the rise
我国民间救助困境儿童的力量日益壮大, January 30, 2005
Government statistics show that there are over a hundred grassroots NGOs in China working on children welfares and other child-abuse and poverty issues.

Reporting corruption cases online accelerates due to lucrative cash rewards
北京反贪网上举报升温 对举报者奖十万不封顶, January 30, 2005
Since the Beijing procuratorate bureau encourages public to report corruption cases online last year, the bureau received a total of 89 reports in 2004. Public’s ardent responses are in part due to a lucrative cash reward of 100,000 yuan.

Death penalty
In possible nod to Europe, China says it may narrow use of death penalty
AFP via, January 28, 2005
To address European concerns over death penalty incidence in China, China considers narrowing down the types of crimes for which the death penalty can be applied to make way for EU’s favorable decision on lifting the arms embargo.

Detention – Yang Tianshui (楊天水)
Voice of America via, January 29, 2005
Dissident freelance writer Yang Tianshui (楊天水) reveals that he has been closely watched by the authority while the police is “framing up” the charge of “inciting subversion of state power” against him.

S.Korea, Japan, China write history book
China National News, 30th January, 2005
Scholars, teachers and historians in China, Japan and South Korea have announced they will publish a jointly-written textbook in May.

Food security
New criteria set for food safety, January 29, 2005
China is set to work on a series of technical standards to minimize pesticide residues and other hazards in food and fabrics to address public concerns on food safety in the country.

Gender – abuse / population– one-child policy
In China, help for girls
International Herald Tribune, January 31, 2005
The high incidence of “missing girls” in China is clear evidence to the adverse consequence of China’s ill one-child policy.

June 4th – prisoners – Zhao Ziyuang (趙紫陽)
Zhao's treatment exposes dilemma for leadership
SCMP, January 31, 2005

We had little say over funeral, relatives claim
SCMP, January 31, 2005

Beijing criticized for banning Chinese media coverage on Zhao funeral
Voice of America, January 31, 2005

Party picks No 4 man to attend Zhao's funeral
SCMP, January 29, 2005

Conference to study the life of Zhao Ziyang held in New York
Voice of America, January 30, 2005

Purported interview reveals Zhao Ziyuan’s hope to see China fighting its ways towards democracy
赵紫阳生前谈话盼中国走渐进式民主, January 29, 2005

Remains of Comrade Zhao Ziyang cremated in Beijing, January 29, 2005

Zhao remembered, but cautiously
The Christian Science Monitor, January 31, 2005
In Beijing Saturday, mourners braved police presence to pay respects at purged premier's funeral.

Labor - migrants
China amending construction law in bid to help migrant workers get backpay
China National News, January 31, 2005
China is amending its construction law in its first major concrete step to ensure that millions of migrant workers get the salaries they are owed.

Hu presides over massive reshuffle to cement power
SCMP, January 31, 2005
The Hu government experienced one of the largest reshuffles of local and central government officials in recent years in order to cement his power and loyalty base under Hu’s leadership.

Public health
Eight die in outbreak of meningitis
SCMP, January 31, 2005
The spread of meningitis through at least 11 cities in eastern Anhui and Jiangsu provinces has led to 8 died and 7 hospitalized.

Public health – HIV aids
Who saves the hearts of aids orphans?
People’s Daily, January 31, 2005
Social stigmas would further isolate poor aids orphans from the society and create social problems. An all-round assistance program is needed to alleviate their plight.

Rural issues – rural development
China issues policies to further support agriculture sector
People’s Daily, January 31, 2005
The CPC Central Committee and the State Council announced a set of policies to strengthen and improve agricultural development and work in rural areas.

Dalai Lama's Office Says China Pressed Nepal To Close Them Down
Radio Free Asia, January 28, 2005
The head of Dalai Lama’s office and Tibetan Refuge Welfare Office said that China exerted great pressure onto Nepal in closing down their operation and activities in the country.