Wednesday, March 26, 2008
There is now a petition circulating in China addressed to Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao asking that the government withdraw the ban. Here's an English translation; here's the Chinese original. Interestingly, some of the language tracks that of the report in the Procuratorial Daily that I translated here a few days ago.
Here's a video of Time reporters Simon Elegant and Austin Ramzy trying to visit Hu Jia's wife Zeng Jingyan at her apartment at the ironically named Bobo Freedom City apartment complex. Zeng is under what amounts to house arrest, although as far as I know no legal justification has been offered. Here's a video shot by Hu Jia earlier of their life under house arrest. And here's the story of an attempt to bring milk powder to Zeng Jinyan and her baby. Fascinating stuff.
Last month I posted about the WTO's interim ruling; the final ruling has now been issued (but won't be public until July). Those who have access to the BNA's WTO Reporter can see a full report here. Here are the first few paragraphs, the quoting of which will not, I hope, exceed the bounds of fair use:
A World Trade Organization dispute panel has issued a final ruling upholding complaints filed by the United States, the European Union and Canada against China's discriminatory tariff treatment of imported automobile parts.
The final ruling circulated to the four parties March 20 maintains the findings in the panel's interim report issued Feb. 13, according to officials familiar with the ruling (30 WTO, 02/14/08).
The panel rejected China's arguments in defense of regulations that the United States, the EU, and Canada said resulted in illegal duties being imposed on imported auto parts.
Officials said China contested only one part of the panel's findings during the review of the interim report, namely that Beijing's decision to subject imports of completely knocked-down (CKD) and semi knocked-down (SKD) auto kits to the same 25 percent tariff as complete motor vehicles violated China's WTO accession commitments. The panel rejected China's claims in the final ruling, the officials said.
The final ruling is due to be issued to all WTO members and made public sometime in July.
Monday, March 24, 2008
Here's a remarkable article about one CPPCC's delegate's call for the State Council to enact regulations on physical fitness (全民健身条例). Despite going on at length about the urgent need for such regulations, the article manages to avoid entirely telling us exactly (or even inexactly) why they are needed. It seems that every sphere of human activity in principle has to have a governing statute.
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Here's a cool Chinese-language blog of which I recently became aware: the "Re-Education Through Labor" (劳动教养) blog. It's blocked from China (this really shouldn't be a problem for most people any more, given proxy servers, virtual private networks, etc.), but has an RSS feed that works without any need for fancy software if you can just get to the site once to sign up for it.
HT: Otto Malmgren.