CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 22 September 2018

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Bloggers disappear ahead of Tiananamen anniversary

HONG KONG (UCAN): In the run-up to the 29th anniversary of the Tiannamen Square Massacre on June 4, several Chinese bloggers went missing, or were compelled to take a government arranged holiday.
 
According to a June 4 press release from Reporters Without Borders, Chinese authorities arranged for certain bloggers to take vacations under police escort before this year’s anniversary.
 
The organisation reported that Hu Jia, who was awarded its Press Freedom Prize in 2007 and the Sakharov Prize in 2008, was told he would be “under soft detention” in Hebei province from June 1 to 5.
 
Meanwhile, He Depu, a political commentator, was informed that he should take a trip to an unknown destination on June 3.
 
Cha Jianguo, who wrote for the Chinese arm of PEN International, a writers’ association, was reportedly placed under house arrest on May 28 after turning down a vacation offer.
 
Such disappearances occur each year in the prior to the anniversary of the Tiananmen tragedy, which is heavily censored on mainland China.
 
Cedric Alviani, head of the East Asia desk of Reporters Without Borders, called for an end to such abuses and to preventing foreign journalists from contacting bloggers as sources for stories on Tiananmen anniversaries.

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