China’s Yangtze River, biggest freshwater lakes Poyang and Dongting at risk as fishing, sand mining bans flouted: report

However, according to the report from the centre’s inspection groups, rules against low dykes in Poyang Lake were not enforced, “fishing bans in key waters and aquatic life protection are not fully implemented, and the problem of agricultural pollution is prominent”. Low dykes built to retain water had affected water quality in the lake and … Read more

‘Emotional power’: China’s Covid wounds reopened in tense, divisive ‘An Unfinished Film’

Much of the film focuses on the mobile phone screen of a film crew member character. On the phone, the audience sees actual news reports and short videos that were posted during the Covid-19 pandemic in China between 2020 and 2022 – most of which were later removed by censors. Nationalist online commenters have argued … Read more

Divided legislature and mainland Chinese forces ruin honeymoon for Taiwan’s William Lai

It was all part of a concerted effort by the main opposition Kuomintang (KMT) and the smaller Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) – which together form the legislative majority – to increase scrutiny of government agencies and officials. Since losing its legislative majority earlier this year, the independence-leaning DPP has faced successive setbacks in the advance … Read more

China’s local governments shut down social media accounts as budgets shrink

Dozens of cities in the provinces of Guangdong, Sichuan, Yunnan, Hunan, Shaanxi, Shandong and Jiangsu, as well as Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, have announced plans so far this year to cut back on government department websites, social media accounts and smartphone applications, research by the Post shows. One of the latest to do so was … Read more

China jails former Three Gorges chief Cao Guangjing for life for taking bribes

A former senior official in central China was sentenced on Friday to life in prison for taking over 216 million yuan (US$29.8 million) in bribes and helping others to profit from insider trading. The Xuzhou Intermediate People’s Court in the eastern province of Jiangsu handed down the sentence to Cao Guangjing, 60, former deputy governor … Read more

Xi Jinping meeting underlines China’s economic growth priority, with message ‘clearer than ever’, analysts say

Other observers also compared this week’s meeting to Xi’s previous interactions with entrepreneurs, as well as the changing economic environment. “There seems to be a pattern that at each key juncture of economic development and reforms, Xi will meet business leaders,” said a Beijing-based observer who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the … Read more

Jimmy Lai lawyer, fugitives target Hong Kong trade offices in talks with US lawmakers

Sponsored by Republican congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey, the bill was approved by the House Foreign Affairs Committee in November, and a Senate version of the bill passed that chamber’s foreign relations committee less than four months earlier. Neither has been put to a full chamber vote. Citing the bill’s unanimous passage in the … Read more

Mainland China to be tested by Taiwan under William Lai, with global view of cross-strait policies on the line: analysts

Hours earlier, Beijing announced the launch of a two-day military exercise around Taiwan as practice run for a blockade, after accusing Lai at length of sending “dangerous signals” on the island’s independence in his inaugural address. Lei, who worked with then fellow lawmaker Lai from 2005 to 2008 – when his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) … Read more

AI-enabled ‘covert’ detention monitoring cameras, drone disrupters headline China police gear fair

In China, a detainee can be held in disciplinary detention without access to a lawyer for up to six months. Under the country’s supervision law, such detentions could apply to anyone employed in the state sector or on a public payroll, including officials, scholars, teachers, and the parties suspected of offering bribes. A company at … Read more

Mainland Chinese forces start ‘blockade’ drills around Taiwan 3 days after Lai speech

Song Zhongping, a mainland military commentator and former PLA instructor, said the PLA is using the drills to practice a “ blockade” of Taiwan. “It is a warning to Lai,” Song said. “It is not the first time the PLA did so, but this time is is more severe,” he said. The PLA said the … Read more