Xi Jinping’s Village

Xi Jinping’s Village, by Dan Hitchens.

Twenty-nine years have passed since the Tiananmen Square massacre. But in China you can still be arrested, even jailed, for publicly commemorating it, according to Amnesty’s annual report. The police may also pay a visit if you are a human rights lawyer, a workers’ rights advocate, or a critic of government policy. Human Rights Watch says that activists are tortured, held incommunicado, and forced into confessions that are then broadcast on state TV and social media. Churches are vandalized by state authorities, religious leaders arrested.

All this is getting worse, not better, under Xi’s increasingly centralized rule. The forthcoming “social credit” scheme will rank citizens according to the minute details of their daily lives, and could prevent them finding loans or jobs. …

The government claims to have ended its organ harvesting practices, in which political prisoners were strapped to tables and cut open, but academics point to a lack of transparency. Indeed, the scale of torture, execution, detention without trial, oppression of workers, and forced abortion is a mystery—and it is even less likely to be known now that China is bringing foreign NGOs under closer surveillance.

hat-tip Stephen Neil