RFA in the News (November 2007)

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International Herald Tribune

The Associated Press, Friday, November 30, 2007

BEIJING: Civilian students at a Chinese military academy smashed windows and clashed with the authorities in protest over reports that their diplomas would not be recognized in the increasingly competitive job market, a radio station reported Friday. A duty officer at the People's Liberation Army Artillery Academy in the eastern city of Hefei said violent protests broke out Wednesday, but refused to give his name or say what sparked the unrest. He said calm had returned by Thursday afternoon and some students had returned to class Friday morning. He denied that any students had been injured, but would not say whether any had been detained or expelled. Radio Free Asia, a private broadcaster funded by the United States, said the campus disturbances were led by activists among self-funded students who are not military cadets and have not been accepted into formal degree-earning programs at the school.

The above story was also picked up by

The Chronicle of Higher Education on November 30, 2007 under the headline: Angry Students Riot in China


Associated Press, AP Financial Wire, AP Worldstream

November 30, 2007 under the headline:

Students riot at China military academy over claims degrees not to be recognized THE SAME STORY WAS headlined in a Time magazine blog http://time-blog.com/china_blog/2007/11/angry_students_on_campus.html

Time Magazine blog

Posted by Bill Powell | Comments (10) | Permalink | Trackbacks (0) | Email This

One of the more under-reported stories in China is the discontent that many students at second tier universities feel. Over the past couple of years, there have been several cases of unrest over issues that speak to the

economic insecurity that many of China’s young people feel—particularly if they don’t go to elite universities like Fudan or Tsinghua. Here’s the latest, from a military school in Anhui. The apparent issue here, as it’s been in a few other of these violent outbursts over the last couple of years, is whether the diploma the students receive from the school is legitimate—ie, will it be recognized as such by prospective employers (particularly government employers)-- or whether, as the RFA dispatch reprinted here in its entirety puts it, the diploma “is fake.”

HONG KONG—Thousands of military academy students in central China’s Anhui province are rioting after news spread that the government wouldn’t recognize diplomas awarded to the fee-paying students, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reports. “It was total chaos. Many people were beaten and were bleeding. The school buildings are a mess,” one student, surnamed Peng, told RFA’s Mandarin service.

Agence France-Presse

November 29, 2007

Tibetans riot after police detain monks: official media

BEIJING, Nov 29 2007

Nearly 200 people rioted outside a local government headquarters in Tibet, protesting over the police detention of two Buddhist monks accused of robbery, state media reported Thursday. The crowd of ethnic Tibetans, which included monks, gathered at the Paingar township government office in western Tibet on Tuesday last week, destroying some of the buildings there as well as nearby shops, Xinhua news agency said…According to Radio Free Asia's Web site, police fired warning shots after they arrived at the motorcycle shop and later detained two monks named Yeshi Thokme, 15, and Dhondup Dorjee, 16.

Taipei Times, Taiwan - Nov 29, 2007

Beijing lashes out at Dalai Lama over succession ideas

RELIGIOUS VIOLATION: China respects Tibetan Buddhism's religious and historic conventions, a spokesman said, but it cannot accept changes

The Chinese Foreign Ministry condemned the Dalai Lama yesterday for suggesting that his successor as Tibet's spiritual leader might be chosen by referendum, saying that this would "violate religious rituals." The Dalai Lama has been considering options for choosing his successor, saying that senior lamas could follow Vatican practice and elect one of their number to succeed him, or that Tibetans might want to do away with the institution altogether. He has also mooted a referendum. …According to Radio Free Asia's Web site, police fired warning shots after they arrived at the motorcycle shop and later detained two monks named Yeshi Thokme, 15, and Dhondup Dorjee, 16. Another monk, Tsering Gyaltsen, 14, was left behind after being beaten by police for wearing a photograph of the Dalai Lama around his neck.

The Economist Intelligence Unit

November 27, 2007 Tuesday

China politics: Dalai Lama controversy COUNTRY BRIEFING

China's controversial handling of Tibet and the part the issue plays in China's international relations was highlighted in mid-October, when the US president, George W Bush, chose to receive the Dalai Lama, the exiled spiritual leader of the Tibetan Buddhists and a campaigner for genuine autonomy for Tibet. The meeting took place in the White House, the US president's official residence, before a ceremony in which Congress (the US legislature) awarded the Dalai Lama the Congressional Gold Medal on October 17th….It was reported by Radio Free Asia in October that the Chinese Communist Party had even ordered a crackdown in September on its own members in Tibet to purge its ranks of subversive elements.

Supplied by BBC Worldwide Monitoring November 27, 2007 Tuesday

Women activists protest in Burma despite tight security

Text of report in English by Thailand-based Burmese publication Irrawaddy Web site on 26 November [Report by Saw Yan Naing from "Latest news" section: "Women Activists Stage Demonstration in Rangoon"] A group of more than 25 women activist paraded through downtown Rangoon on Sunday in the first public display of opposition to the military regime since the September crackdown…Radio Free Asia quoted one demonstrator saying: "We are not afraid of arrest. We are ready to sacrifice our lives for the people and our country."

Korea Times

November 19, 2007 Monday

Moscow Denies North Korean's Asylum Request

The Russian government has refused to grant asylum status to a North Korean defector, according to a report Monday. The defector had been taken into custody in Russia for purposes of being sent back to North Korea and had then escaped in order to seek asylum. Radio Free

Asia (RFA), quoting a U.N. refugees agency, reported that North Korean Jong Kum-chul, after being denied asylum, is now seeking a third country to go to including South Korea.

Yonhap (South Korea) November 18, 2007 Sunday

Three N. Korean refugees in prison in Thailand: report

SEOUL Nov. 17: Three North Korean refugees were confirmed to have been imprisoned in Thailand while en route to South Korea after defecting from their communist homeland, a U.S. radio station reported Saturday. The three North Koreans - a man in his early 30s identified only by his surname Kim, and two other males in their 20s - are serving 18-month terms at a prison in the northeastern Thai city of Nong Khai, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported. The report said the North Koreans were arrested in September 2006 while crossing into Thailand from Laos.

The Associated Press

November 11, 2007

China sentences 5 ethnic Muslims to death in Xinjiang region

BEIJING: China has sentenced to death five ethnic Muslims from the country's restive far western region who were accused of separatist activities, state media reported Sunday. Xinhua News Agency said of the five men who were sentenced to death, two had their sentences suspended for two years. That means the death sentence will be commuted to life in jail if the prisoner shows good behavior and remorse for two years…China has cracked down hard on anyone it feels is challenging its authority in Xinjiang. In February, U.S. broadcaster Radio Free Asia reported that China had executed another Muslim, Ismail Semed, in the region on charges of trying to split the country.

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