From Press Gazette
Chinaâ€™s alleged disregard for press freedom has been condemned by an Amnesty International reported released ahead of next yearâ€™s Olympic Games.
The report says the Chinese government makes continued use of detention without trial and house arrests and is engaged in an ongoing crackdown on journalists.
“This report is a disturbing reminder of how far China still has to go to make good its promise to improve human rights in the run-up to the Olympicsâ€, said John Watson, Amnesty Internationalâ€™s Programme Director in Scotland. â€œWeâ€™re urging the Chinese government to ensure that Beijing ’08 will deliver a marvellous Olympic Games but also deliver genuine improvements in human rights for China.â€
Amnesty has made Shi Tao, a Chinese journalist and poet, the focus of its campaigning at this yearâ€™s Edinburgh Festival. Shi Tao is serving a 10-year sentence with forced labour for sending an email in 2004 summarising a Chinese government communiquÃ© on how journalists should handle the 15th anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown.
Watson said: “What has happened to Shi Tao is a disgrace. We hope that people enjoying the Festival will see the relevance of this case and join our campaign. Standing up for human rights can be as easy as sending a text message.”
Last year, China is known to have executed over 1,000 people – more than all other countries in the world combined – though the authorities refuse to publish official execution statistics. According to Amnesty, the Chinese secretly execute the equivalent of 22 people every day.