. China News .

Bo trial may not win over China public: analysts
by Staff Writers
Jinan, China (AFP) Aug 26, 2013

Chinese boy, 6, has eyes gouged out in gruesome attack
Beijing (AFP) Aug 27, 2013 - A six-year-old boy in China had his eyes gouged out, blinding him for life, reports said Tuesday, in a gruesome attack that may have been carried out by a ruthless organ trafficker.

Family members found the boy covered in blood some three to four hours after he went missing while playing outside, according to a television report posted online.

The child's eyes were found nearby but the corneas were missing, reports said, implying that an organ trafficker was behind the harrowing attack.

Police offered a 100,000 yuan ($16,000) reward for information leading to the arrest of the sole suspect, who they said was a woman.

"He had blood all over his face. His eyelids were turned inside out. And inside, his eyeballs were not there," his father told Shanxi Television.

Its report showed the heavily-bandaged boy being taken from an operating theatre and placed in a hospital bed, writhing in agony as family members stood at his bedside weeping.

The boy was drugged and "lost consciousness" before the attacker removed his eyes, state broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) said on its account on Sina Weibo, China's version of Twitter.

Internet users were outraged by the attack on the boy -- who had a cleft palate -- in Fenxi, in the northern province of Shanxi on Monday.

"This is extraordinarily vicious," said one Sina Weibo user. "How and why could someone be so cruel?"

"A truly tragic boy," said another poster.

About 300,000 patients in China need transplants each year, but only about 10,000 people can get them due to a lack of donors, state media said.

Seven people were jailed last year when a teenager sold a kidney for an illicit transplant operation and used the proceeds to buy an iPhone and iPad.

Child organs are usually more expensive on the black market, an organ trafficker told Sina Internet news portal in 2010, as "most people think the younger the donor is, the better the quality of organs".

Chinese authorities tried to present Bo Xilai's corruption trial as an unprecedented open display of fairness, but with limits on publication and references to other leaders conspicuously absent, they may yet fail in the court of public opinion.

Bo, once head of the southwestern megacity of Chongqing and one of China's 25 most powerful politicians, had divided the Communist leadership with his flamboyant left-wing populism, and a sensational murder scandal was the catalyst for his downfall.

But the one-party state broke from its typically swift, simple and unpublicised trials -- where defendants routinely confess their guilt -- to let Bo mount a feisty defence and even directly question witnesses, who rarely appear in Chinese courts.

The court in the eastern city of Jinan even published regular but carefully managed transcripts from the five-day event on Sina Weibo, a Chinese equivalent of Twitter.

"The judicial decision that will take Bo out for probably a very long time has to have maximum legitimacy, so that it really washes off the party the taint of having had a top leader engaging brazenly in this kind of corruption and abuse," said Nicholas Bequelin, a senior Human Rights Watch researcher based in Hong Kong.

"Having a good trial like this, something that really looks like a real trial, will help confer legitimacy to the outcome and that's in the interest of the party."

The scandal over the killing of British businessman Neil Heywood emerged in the run-up to a 10-yearly handover of power within the ruling party, and the proceedings were a way of "closing a chapter on this very messy succession and power struggle", Bequelin added.

But the court's online updates were partial and publication delays lengthened as proceedings went on. Analysts said the entire trial risked looking like a cover for political infighting.

"Challenges to the leadership, challenges to the party line typically are handled in terms of corruption cases," said Joseph Cheng, a China politics expert at City University of Hong Kong.

"It reinforces a rather cynical impression on the part of the ordinary people: if officials are accused of corruption it means that they have gotten into political trouble."

The magnitude of corruption often associated with top officials such as Bo is much greater than the 27 million ($4.4 million) at issue in the trial.

Adding to the sense of political theatre, the issues most sensitive to the party -- such as large-scale graft or disputes among Bo's fellow leaders -- did not arise in court, according to the transcripts as published.

It was not known whether they were censored or if authorities negotiated with Bo beforehand not to mention them.

But the sole allusion to a senior leader, a vague reference that Bo in one instance acted on orders from above, disappeared from a section of the transcript that was deleted and reposted.

State media played down and even dismissed Bo's arguments, with the official news agency Xinhua mentioning his defence only in passing, and Chinese-language newspapers largely confining themselves to reprinting its reports.

"I think the central political and judicial authorities are keen to show a high degree of openness and transparency regarding the trial, while at the same time tightly controlling the message," said Nicholas Howson, an expert on Chinese law at the University of Michigan in the US.

The trial arrangements certainly gave Bo a platform of sorts, but Cheng said authorities may have calculated he would not secure too large a groundswell of support.

Since early in his career as mayor of the northeastern city of Dalian in the 1990s, Bo's suave style contrasted with Chinese politicians' typical guardedness in public.

He tapped into popular discontent with the downsides of China's rapid development such as a deepening rich-poor gap, championing a Maoist revivalist streak with activities such as mass singing of "red" songs.

In court he apparently lived up to his reputation as bold and charismatic -- dismissing his wife Gu Kailai who provided testimony as "insane", and the account of his righthand man and Chongqing police chief Wang Lijun as "full of lies and fraud".

By the end of the trial, the court's Weibo account had almost 600,000 followers. But the comments on it showed views were divided -- and illustrated the degree of control being imposed.

"I can only say this is a trial that has already had its result decided," said one comment soon after the hearings ended Monday. "No matter how hard Bo fights, the sentence is at least life in jail. This trial is just a procedure that has to be done."

But remarks posted under a transcript published Sunday -- since when authorities had had time to censor them -- overwhelmingly backed the process.

"The party centre showed their firm determination to resolutely punish corruption," read one. "I believe the court will hear this case in a fair and just way."


Related Links
China News from SinoDaily.com

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Get Our Free Newsletters
Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear


Defiant Bo denies bribery charge as China trial opens
Jinan, China (AFP) Aug 22, 2013
Ousted Chinese politician Bo Xilai lashed out at his long-awaited trial Thursday, contesting bribery charges arising from a lurid murder and corruption scandal that has shaken the country's communist leadership. Bo, who was tipped for top office ahead of a once-in-a-decade leadership transition last year, accused a key prosecution witness of "selling his soul", while describing purported tes ... read more

British home secretary introduces bill to fight 'modern slavery'

Nepal's smugglers cash in on India's love of gold

China's Li stresses ASEAN trade, downplays rows

Indigenous protesters rally against Sweden iron mining plans

Syngenta, Bayer challenge EU bee-saving pesticide ban

Part of the herd, dogs ease Namibia's cheetah-farmer conflicts

Cattle in Burundi -- from poetry to milk yields

Crop pests moving polewards through global warming

Defence chiefs meet over DR Congo conflict

Kenyan soldiers kill al-Shabaab guerillas

Kenya looks east, signs $5-bn China deals

South Sudan arrests general for rights violations

Chinese auto market to double by 2019: study

US auto sales accelerate to best pace since 2007

Top French court overrules Mercedes sales ban

Beijing addresses vehicle emissions

Troubled US nuclear plant to shut down over costs

Japan should stop 'confusing messages' on Fukushima: IAEA

Japan unveils ice wall plan for Fukushima water leaks

Sun, sand, surf and radiation in shadow of Fukushima

US leaker stayed at Russia's Hong Kong consulate: report

US tech sector feels pain from PRISM

Facebook: more than 25,000 government data requests

Courion to help cybersecurity non-profit project

Japan could be 'main player' in Asia conflict: minister

Walker's World: China's worried elites

Japan irritated by comments from UN's Ban

Outside View: No easy fixes for NATO

No evidence of residential property value impacts near US wind turbines

French court rejects planned wind farm near Mont Saint Michel

China to Remain Wind Power Market Leader in 2020

Localized wind power blowing more near homes, farms and factories

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement