Saturday, April 22, 2006
Last month I posted links to the Chinese texts of the annual work reports of the Supreme People's Court and the Supreme People's Procuracy. Here they are in English:
Friday, April 21, 2006
The latest issue of the Newsletter of the Legal Advisory Service [to China] of the German Development Cooperation (GTZ) can be downloaded here: Download newsletter_12006en.pdf. Don't forget that GTZ is always looking for interns; details in the newsletter and here.
Thursday, April 20, 2006
The British Transplantation Society has issued a statement accusing Chinese authorities of harvesting the organs of thousands of executed prisoners every year to sell for transplants. A related BBC News report states:
The British Transplantation Society says an accumulating weight of evidence suggests the organs of thousands of executed prisoners in China are being removed for transplants without consent.
Professor Stephen Wigmore, who chairs the society's ethics committee, told the BBC that the speed of matching donors and patients, sometimes as little as a week, implied prisoners were being selected before execution.
The first comprehensive report on this issue of which I am aware is Human Rights Watch, China: Organ Procurement and Judicial Execution in China (August 1994). The research behind this report is extremely thorough and it is still worth reading.
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
With reference to my previous post, a reader has kindly pointed out that Yahoo's general counsel, Michael Callahan, categorically denied in his testimony before Congress in February that the information on Shi Tao was supplied by Yahoo (HK), and stated that it was instead supplied by "Yahoo! China" (it is not clear exactly which Yahoo-associated Chinese entity he is referring to):
Let me take this opportunity to correct inaccurate reports that Yahoo! Hong Kong gave information to the Chinese government. This is absolutely untrue. Yahoo! Hong Kong was not involved in any disclosure of information about Mr. Shi to the Chinese government. In this case, the Chinese government ordered Yahoo! China to provide user information, and Yahoo! China complied with Chinese law. To be clear - Yahoo! China and Yahoo! Hong Kong have always operated independently of one another. There was not then, nor is there today, any exchange of user information between Yahoo! Hong Kong and Yahoo! China.
The source of these inaccurate reports is the text of the court judgment itself. This raises even more intriguing questions: if Mr. Callahan's testimony is accurate, it would seem to follow that the evidence cited in the court judgment is not, and that the court is either dissembling or using forged evidence. Curiouser and curiouser.
As most readers will know, Yahoo has been under severe criticism for its role in the prosecution of Shi Tao, a dissident journalist (discussed first here and then here). Now Reporters Without Borders (RWB) has accused Yahoo of helping police identify Jiang Lijun (姜立军). According to RWB's press release,
Jiang Lijun, 40, was sentenced to four years in prison for “subversion” on 18 November 2003, accused of seeking to use “violent means” to impose democracy. Police believed him to be the leader of a small group of cyberdissidents, which included the young Internet-user Liu Di.
The press release states that "[a]ccording to the verdict, Yahoo! Holdings (Hong Kong) confirmed that the email account ZYMZd2002 had been used jointly by Jiang Lijun and another pro-democracy activist, Li Yibing."
As in the Shi Tao case, the information was apparently provided by a Hong Kong company subject to Hong Kong law, not a mainland PRC company subject to mainland PRC law (for an analysis of which PRC laws apply in Hong Kong, click here). This raises interesting issues, not the least of which is one raised earlier in a letter to Jerry Yang from the Hong Kong Foreign Correspondents' Club: whether Kong Kong privacy laws were violated. (I do not know enough to hazard an opinion - comments on this issue welcome.)
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
On April 21 in Washington, DC, the Export Controls and Embargoes Committee and China Law Committee of the ABA are jointly presenting a session entitled "China Export Controls and Regulations, and One Chinese Company’s Regulatory Response." The speakers will be Mr. Li Genxin (Secretary-General, China Arms Control and Disarmament Association), Mr. He Xiadong (Vice President, China North Industries Group), Mr. Cui Zheng (Director-General, Export Control and ICP Office), and Ms. Xia Ying (Deputy Director-General, Legal Affairs, Export Controls). Full details here: Download ChineseExportControls.pdf.
Sunday, April 16, 2006
The latest E-Bulletin of the China Labour Bulletin (No. 31, 2006-04-13), discussing the work of prominent lawyer Gao Zhisheng in defending workers' rights, is available here. The lead essay draws attention among other things to the apparently increasing collaboration between government and criminal forces in suppressing and intimidating opposition.
Peking University's Law School has just started an English-language LL.M. program in Chinese law. Applications for the 2006-07 academic year are due on May 29th. For more information, click here.
To the best of my knowledge, this is the second English-language LL.M. in Chinese law offered directly by a Chinese law school. The first is at Tsinghua University's Faculty of Law; for more information, click here.