China shuts Maoist website amid political scandal

A+
A
A-

BEIJING—Chinese authorities ordered a leading pro-Maoist website shut down for one month starting Friday because of critical essays posted on it, the site’s founder said, amid the country’s worst high-level political crisis in years.

The move comes after the firing of a once high-flying official who promoted Mao Zedong-era songs and stories.

Han Deqiang, founder of the leftist website Utopia, said police ordered that it be shut down because of content that criticized the Communist Party, its leaders and an upcoming party congress.

“I expected this to happen. If they want to shut us down, it is their right. We exercise our right to express ourselves, they exercise their right,” Han said in a telephone interview.

Han is a vocal supporter of recently ousted Chongqing city Communist Party chief Bo Xilai, who strongly pushed a “Red Culture” campaign. The removal of Bo, considered a contender for a top job only months ago, was widely seen as a sign of divisive infighting.

The shutdown of the site appears to be part of wider censorship aimed at stifling discussion of Bo’s downfall, the highest-level political sacking in years.

Bo’s dismissal is yet to be fully explained and came after a top aide fled temporarily to a US consulate, apparently to seek asylum and in violation of party rules. It also came as the senior leadership is gearing up for a handover of power to a younger generation of leaders in the fall, always a period of intense political bargaining.

Websites such as Utopia oppose privatization of the economy and other Western-style reforms, and have sometimes been critical of China’s current leadership.

They also promote the achievements of Mao, who led a bloody two-decade-long revolution that ended with the establishment of Communist China in 1949 and held power until his death in 1976. His policies plunged the nation into years of famine and led to the deaths of tens of millions.

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • http://civilservice.boxpinoy.com/civilserviceexam.php Rorschach

    Fanatics.

  • kapitanvic1

    CHINA’S GENIE IS OUT OF THE BOTTLE FOR TOO LONG, IT CANNOT BE PUT BACK IN. THEY ALREADY HAVE TASTED FREEDOM.

  • to0

    Those who are anti-Americans should better think twice. You are in for a surprise if you think China is a benevolent State. Just open up the website of “Free Tibet”, the Eastern Mongolia blog, and the Xinjiang Province, and you will see how the Han Chinese suppress the natives of these countries. The tendency is to flood those countries with millions of Han Chinese making the local population becoming the minority. In addition, they are marginalized in their own country just like what Lucio Tan is doing to its PAL employees who have been in that company years before Lucio took over. BEWARE of the Chinese double talk.

  • i_am_filipino

    China stolen one of the latest american super invisible jet fighter diagram. Communism means, SHUT YOUR MOUTH OR WE WILL CONQUER YOUR COUNTRY

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94

editors' picks

advertisement

popular

advertisement

videos