Jan 04, 2013 06:59 PM

In Friday's Papers: Officials' Replacement of Editorial Prompts Heated Discussion, Japan's Extradition Request for Suspected Arsonist Denied


Officials' Replacement of Editorial Prompts Heated Discussion

The replacement of Southern Weekly's New Year's editorial by Guangdong propaganda officials has caused an uproar. The weekly newspaper's "New Year Greeting," an annual tradition at the reform-minded publication, was removed by provincial propaganda officials without the knowledge of editors. Journalists at the paper said they were outraged that officials ordered changes to the first edition of the new year without the consent of the page editor, who had already signed off and left work. Net users took to their blogs and Weibo accounts to discuss the censorship and point out factual errors in the new piece, believed to have been written by provincial propaganda chief Tuo Zhen. Accordingly, Net censors began to delete posts that showed sympathy for the newspaper. The original editorial called for proper implementation of the constitution, but this was changed to an editorial with the headline "We are closer than ever before to our dreams." Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Hua Chunying was asked about the episode on January 4 by a Japanese reporter. She said she was not familiar with the situation, but said there was no news censorship in the country. The government would protect press freedom according to the law, Hua said.

Original article on Global Times

Japan's Extradition Request for Suspected Arsonist Denied

A South Korean court has denied Japan's request to extradite a Chinese man accused of committing arson at Japan's Yasukuni Shrine and instead will send the man back to China. In November 2012, Liu Qiang completed a ten-month prison sentence in South Korea for throwing Molotov cocktails at the Japanese Embassy in Seoul in January 2012.  During the investigation into the embassy attack, Liu confessed to committing an arson attack in December 2011 on the Yasukuni Shrine for the Japanese war dead, which honors World War II Japanese war criminals among others killed in battle. Liu said that he attacked the embassy and shrine in protest against Japan's honoring of war criminals and treatment of "comfort women," who were forced into prostitution by Japanese soldiers. In May, the Japanese and Chinese governments asked that Liu be sent to them. Recent Sino-Japanese relations have been strained due to a dispute over the Diaoyu Islands. In late August, Chinese protesters attacked the Japanese ambassador's car.

Original article on Beijing News

Ministry Implements 'Yellow Light' Law

The recent implementation of a traffic law that punishes drivers for running yellow traffic lights has caused an online furor. The law, put into effect by the Ministry of Public Security's Traffic Management Bureau on January 1, requires drivers to come to a full stop at a yellow light. If they fail to do so, drivers will have six points deducted from their license. (Drivers who lose 12 points from their licenses in a year lose them.) People have taken to their Weibo accounts to complain that more accidents will be caused by people driving slower in anticipation of a green light turning yellow. The ministry says the law will help reduce the number of collisions and traffic jams.

Original article on Dongfang Daily

Zhejiang Businessman Loses Russian Timber Acquisition

A Zhejiang businessman has said he has asked the government of the coastal province to help him apply for international arbitration over Russia's seizure of his timber investment. Fu Jianzhong said he lost 250 million yuan after the Russian government seized and auctioned off the woodlands he had spent years working to acquire and develop. Russia seized the land in March 2007 after discovering that Fu's Zhejiang Xinzhou Group in Khabarovsk, in the east of Russia, was illegally cutting timber and employing people with fake visas. Russia also accused Fu's company of failing to pay taxes and started bankruptcy proceedings. Fu began working with the Russian government in 2003 to acquire 247,000 hectares of forest.

Original article on 21st Century Business Herald

People's Daily Publishes New Opinion Page

The People's Daily, the official newspaper of the Communist Party, has for the first time begun to publish a news commentary section in order to promote dialogue regarding party policies. The new section will discuss hot social topics and help promote reform of the country, the paper said.

Original article on

You've accessed an article available only to subscribers
Share this article
Open WeChat and scan the QR code