Reporting in Xinjiang


Telecommunications service has been disrupted following the riots in Urumqi, Xinjiang Autonomous Region, including both phone and Internet service.

As a result, the websites of local newspapers such as the Xinjiang Daily (新疆日报), Xinjiang Metropolis Daily (新疆都市报), Xinjiang Legal Daily (新疆法制报), and the Morning Post (新疆都市消费晨报) are all unreachable from Beijing, as are news portals iYaxin (亚心网) and Tianshan (新疆新闻总汇).

The papers are apparently still publishing, despite being inaccessible to much of the country. In its three-page spread on the riots, The Beijing News reprinted an article from the Morning Post alongside a selection of Xinhua wire reports and CCTV stills (CCTV's website hosts is own feature on the incident).

The Morning Post article is mostly devoted to making the case that overseas organizations took advantage of anger over the Shaoguan, Guangdong riots on June 26 to incite violence in Urumqi. State media had previously blamed the Shaoguan riots on a rumor spread by a former toy factory worker who said that Uighur men had raped two women working in the factory, but according to an account released by police this week, a woman had been sexually assaulted after mistakenly entering the dormitory of Uighur workers, leading to violence and the death of two Uighur workers. (Xinhua has much the same story.)

More news on the riots

· Peter Ford writes in the Christian Science Monitor about the problems he had reaching people in the region, and his difficulties in getting them to talk about the riots once he had them on the line.

· The New Dominion is publishing frequent updates with the Chinese and international latest news reports, including several photo sets.

· The Economist reports from Urumqi:

The south-eastern part of the city appeared to suffer most violence on Sunday: police were out in force on Monday; broken shop windows dotted the area, along with fire-damaged buildings and scores of burnt and overturned cars. The scorched shells of eleven new cars sat on the lot in front of the Xinjiang Tongtong Geely Automobile dealership.

· The AP has reported that protests may have spread to Kashgar.

· At China Elections and Governance, Evelyn Chan discusses the riots in terms of "horizontal violence."

· Shanghaiist runs down some of the theories as to the cause of the riots, from a peaceful protest to a conspiracy engineered to topple the government.

· Josie Liu at China in Transition describes how BBS users are digging up old threads on Xinjiang and updating them with new information on recent events. Because the headlines concern outdated, non-sensitive information, the discussions avoid the censor's eye.

· Melissa K. Chan of Al Jazeera English is updating her Twitter account from the ground in Urumqi.

· The New York Times examines how Chinese authorities are managing information about the situation in Xinjiang.

Arriving reporters were escorted by bus to the hotel downtown, where the media room offered photographers compact discs filled with pictures, videos and television “screen grabs” taken by state news organizations. Reporters were advised to attend a news conference Tuesday morning for an update.

Such services lift a page from the tactics that Western organizations, from the White House to major business groups, employ to get their message to traveling journalists. But at least some of the similarities end there: in Urumqi, journalists were told that they could not conduct interviews on their own, away from government minders. Other details beyond approved news reports were scant.

There are currently 1 Comments for Reporting in Xinjiang.

Comments on Reporting in Xinjiang

Looks like all those Xinjiang newspaper sites are unreachable from New York(!) too...

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