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Currently, the Laogai Research Foundation estimates that there are approximately 1,045 laogai facilities in China, containing an estimated 6.8 million detainees, although the actual number of detainees is uncertain.
Originally posted by Maxmars
It's a problem that leads to increasingly difficult misrepresentations in both current events and future history - that will rely upon the content under the paradigm that 'it must be so if it was reported in the news.'
Interesting question to the posters on this thread: would you rather you got goods from a country that didn't execute people but where the workers toiled in the worst sweatshops imaginable, or from a country where the workers were fairly treated but a draconian government executed people for crimes that might be punished with imprisonment in your own?
Amnesty International estimated that at least 1,770 people were executed in China during the year, although the true figures were believed to be much higher. A Chinese legal expert was quoted as stating the figure for executions is approximately 8,000 based on information from local officials and judges, but official national statistics on the application of the death penalty remained classified as a state secret.
China's government has admitted that an illegal traffic in human organs for transplant actually exists, but blamed it on the work of rogue surgeons. For this reason, it has called on the members of the profession to adhere to a "code of conduct". Addressing a conference of surgeons in Guangzhou yesterday, Deputy Health Minister Huang Jiefu acknowledged that most organs harvested come from executed prisoners. He insisted that informed consent must inform organ harvesting, that donation be voluntary and done with the consent of donors or their families.
that China is demonised for doing things that other countries do as a matter of routine. I'm not saying that these things are good, but that China's being singled out where other countries (including the US) are similarly culpable.
June 3 - The Assault Begins
As word spreads that ... thousands of troops are approaching from all four corners of the city, Beijingers flood the streets to block them, as they had done two weeks earlier. People set up barricades at every major interstion. At about 10:30 p.m., near the Muxidi apartment buildings -- home to high-level Party officials and their families -- the citizens become aggressive as the army tries to break through their barricades. They yell at the soldiers and some throw rocks; someone sets a bus on fire. The soldiers start firing on the unarmed civilians with AK-47s loaded with battlefield ammunition.
The wounded are taken to nearby hospitals on bicycles and pull-carts, but the hospital staff are unequipped to deal with the severe wounds. Muxidi sees the highest casualties of the night; an untold number of people are killed.
June 4 - The Massacre Continues
Later that morning, some people -- believed to be the parents of the student protestors -- try to re-enter Tiananmen Square via Chang'an Boulevard. The soldiers order them to leave, and when they don't, open fire, taking down dozens of people at a time. According to eyewitness accounts, the citizens seem not to believe the army is firing on them with real ammunition.
"[A]fter a little while, like 40 minutes, people would gather up their nerve again and would crawl back to the corner and start screaming at the soldiers, and then the commander would eventually give another signal … and they'd shoot more in the backs," remembers journalist Jan Wong, who watched it all from her hotel room above the boulevard. "And this went on more than half a dozen times in the day." When rescue workers try to approach the street to remove the wounded, they, too, are shot.
No one knows for certain how many people died over the two days. The Chinese Red Cross initially reported 2,600, then quickly retracted that figure under intense pressure from the government. The official Chinese government figure is 241 dead, including soldiers, and 7,000 wounded.
Source : PBS