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, March 14, 2005

March 12-14, 2005

Top news of the day

Parliamentary sitting a magnet for nation's poor petitioning for justice
SCMP, March 12, 2005
Thousands people flocked to Beijing to address their grievances and hoping to get an answers from the officials.

Bilaterals - US/China
White House Unhappy With New Chinese Law
Associated Press, March 14, 2005
The Bush administration said Monday that China's threat to use force to stop any Taiwanese move toward independence is an "unfortunate" development that could increase tensions in the region.

US 'deeply troubled' by China forcibly returning North Korean refugees
Agence France Presse, 11 March 2005

Death Penalty
Chinese Premier says China not to abolish death penalty
People’s Daily Online, March 14 2005

Premier: China Won't Abolish Death Penalty
Associated Press, 14 March 2005
China has no plans to abolish its death penalty but is carrying out reforms to ensure that it is used prudently, Premier Wen Jiabao said Monday.

CPPCC adviser urges reform of student financial aid scheme
China Youth Daily, March 14 2005

First Human Rights Course Debuts in China's University
Xinhua News Agency March 12, 2005
Family planning policy, death penalty, freedom of speech were all fiercely debated at a human rights course that began Wednesday in South China's Guangzhou University.

Human rights – freedom of speech
Dissidents urges “release political dissidents as the first step to build a harmonious society” in open letter
李国涛等:释放异议人士,实现社会和谐──致中国两会公开信, March 14, 2005

Human rights – education
First human right course debuts in China's university
People’s Daily, March 12, 2005

Human rights / UN
China: Human Rights Concerns for the 61st Session of the U.N. Commission
Human Rights Watch, March 10, 2005

Human rights – bilateral ties
Human rights off China agenda
The Australian, March 14, 2005,5

June 4th - arms embargo
EU firm on ending China arms embargo-commissioner
Reuters News, 12 March 2005
The European Union is determined to lift its 15-year ban on arms sales to China and does not expect any retaliation from Washington when it does so, a top official said on Saturday.

Labour- industrial accident
Six workers trap in mining accident in Hunan
湖南宁乡县一煤矿发生突泥事故6人被困, March 14 2005

Work Safety Watchdog to Be Given More Power
China Daily March 14, 2005
The State Council has decided to grant more power to the State Administration of Work Safety so that it can conduct inspections and supervise more effectively, especially in coal mines where at least 6,000 were killed last year, Huang Yi, spokesman for the administration, said.

Guizhou Targets Mine Safety
Xinhua News Agency March 13, 2005
The families of dead miners face a hefty burden in dealing with colliery owners, a high-ranking official in charge of coal mine production in the southwestern Guizhou Province said in an exclusive Xinhua interview.

Blood and coal: the human cost of cheap Chinese goods
The Guardian, March 14, 2005,7369,1437055,00.html

Legal reform / RTL
New law on “rectifying illegal activities” to replace re-education through labour system
违法行为矫治法列入今年立法计划 取代劳教制度
East, March 14, 2005

Media - censorship
Financial Times, 14 March 2005
Coinciding with the NPC has been another performance, this time staged by the BBC, whose compe`res, reporters and producers, seemingly also in their thousands, have been visiting as part of the broadcaster's China Week.

In China, Two Books but One Party
Officials Ban Party Veteran's Work, Endorse Biography by U.S. Businessman
Washington Post, Saturday, March 12, 2005

Petitions and protests
China detains high-profile petitioners during parliament session
Agence France Presse, 13 March 2005

Population control main task, says Wen
SCMP, March 14, 2005

Public Health-HIV Aids
China launches human trials of AIDS vaccine, March 13 2005
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Public health - other
School Children Reel from Lack of Sleep
China Daily March 12, 2005
The survey, conducted among 5,846 students in 10 major cities, including Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing in the past two years, showed that 10.4 per cent of those under 12 years old slept less than eight hours a day.

500,000 to be moved off "Beijing rim"
China Daily, March 12, 2005

Rural issues - poverty
China rejects complaints on currency; says poor will get priority in economic reforms
Associated Press Newswires, 14 March 2005

State secrets / detention
Chinese dissenters face jail for 'state secrets' violations Vague, catchall term is used to punish activists
Baltimore Sun via China Digital News, March 13, 2005

Conciliatory Dalai Lama expounds on winds of change
SCMP, March 14, 2005

Hong Kong – Basic Law
Democrats vow to fight Basic Law 'U-turn'
SCMP, March 12, 2005

China Enacts Law to Stop Taiwan Secession
AP via, M arch 14, 2005

Chen calls for 1m marchers
SCMP, March 12, 2005

Top Legislature Adopts Anti-Secession Law
Xinhua News Agency March 14, 2005

Tibetan Panchen Lama lashes out at military spending in rare comments
Agence France Presse, 14 March 2005
The teenage boy picked by Beijing to become the second-highest spiritual figure in Tibet has lashed out at countries spending vast sums of money on weapons in rare comments published Monday.

China rules out terrorism in Muslim region blasts.
Reuters News, 13 March 2005
China has ruled out terrorism as a cause of two explosions in the Muslim-majority northwestern region of Xinjiang and the top government official there said on Sunday ethnic tension had eased.