A 16 year old boy identified officially only by the surname Yang was arrested on Sept. 17 in Gansu Province, a rural province in northern China roughly 850 miles west of Beijing, under a new law aimed at preventing online rumor spreading. Yang, who was released seven days later, had been charged with inciting public unrest and spreading inaccurate information after he made posts on Weibo calling for protests concerning a suspicious death. The basis for Yang’s arrest was a statement released by the China’s Supreme People’s Court and Supreme People’s Protectorate on Sept. 9 that spreading rumors and inciting unrest could be punishable with jail time in serious cases. Officials at the public security department of the province where Yang was arrested said that he was released because he was an adolescent and had expressed regret for his actions. (BBC, Sept. 20; Global Times, Sept. 24; China Daily, Sept. 25; NPR, Sept. 26)
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SR: The Week’s China Reads
Every week, China Program’s Senior Advisor Dr. Robert A. Kapp compiles a reading list and provides commentary, for you to better understand China.
Robert A. Kapp is senior advisor to the China Program at the Carter Center. He has been principal of Robert A. Kapp and Associates, a business consulting firm, since 2004. From 1994 through 2004 he served as President of the United States-China Business Council…