News / Asia

    China Holds Writer's Siblings, Demands Retraction of Column

    FILE - A billboard shows Chinese President Xi Jinping. Zhang said police were demanding that he cease his political writing and give up his column.
    FILE - A billboard shows Chinese President Xi Jinping. Zhang said police were demanding that he cease his political writing and give up his column.
    Associated Press

    A Chinese dissident writer said Monday that police in his hometown are holding three of his siblings in retaliation for an article he wrote condemning the detention of a fellow writer suspected of involvement in the posting of an anonymous letter online calling for the Chinese president's resignation.

    Zhang Ping, better known by his penname Chang Ping, said by phone from his home in Germany that his two younger brothers and a younger sister were detained after they returned to the southwestern town of Duofu to celebrate their father's birthday.

    Zhang said police were demanding that he cease his political writing and give up his column on the website of German international broadcaster Deutsche Welle. He said police also told family members that they want him to remove his article about the writer from social media sites where he posted it.

    Asked by phone about Zhang's siblings, Duofu police said they are holding several people on suspicion of an arson attack committed during a homecoming visit but refused to give details. Zhang said he understood police were using the arson claim as a pretext to hold his brothers and sister.

    Zhang had criticized the 10-day detention of writer Jia Jia over suspicions that he was linked to the posting of a letter that criticized President Xi Jinping's rule and called for him to step down. It briefly appeared on the government-controlled news site Watching.cn in early March.

    Jia declined to discuss his detention or accept media interviews.

    The president of Watching.cn, Li Wanhui, two top editors and two site technicians have also dropped from view for days and are believed to be under investigation. Nine other technicians working for a technology company that provides support to the site also are reported missing.

    Similar to Zhang, another prominent overseas Chinese activist, Wen Yunchao, also has said that authorities in his southern Chinese home county of Jiexi have been holding his elderly parents and a younger brother since Tuesday in an apparent attempt to pressure him into admitting involvement in posting the letter. Wen has denied any ties to the letter.

    The human rights group Amnesty International has urged Chinese authorities not to harass dissents' family members, saying such actions undercut China's claim to respect the rule of law.

    You May Like

    Multimedia Obama Calls on Americans to Help the Families of Its War Dead

    In last Memorial Day of his presidency, Obama lays wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery

    The Strife of the Party: Will Trump Permanently Alter Republicans?

    While billionaire mogul's no-holds-barred style, high-energy delivery are what rocketed him to nomination, they also have created rift between party elites and his supporters

    China's Education Reforms Spark Protest

    Beijing is putting a quota system in place to increase the number of students from poor regions attending universities

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora