Afrique Ameriques Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
 
China 9 February 2006

Another cyberdissident imprisoned because of data provided by Yahoo

Reporters Without Borders called on Yahoo! to supply a list of all cyberdissidents it has provided data on, beginning with 81 people in China whose release the worldwide press freedom organization is currently campaigning for.

It said it had discovered that Yahoo! customer and cyberdissident Li Zhi had been given his eight-year prison sentence in December 2003 based on electronic records provided by Yahoo. “How many more cases are we going to find?” it asked.

“We were sure the case of Shi Tao, who was jailed for 10 years last April on the basis of Yahoo-supplied data, was not the only one. Now we know Yahoo works regularly and efficiently with the Chinese police.

“The firm says it simply responds to requests from the authorities for data without ever knowing what it will be used for. But this argument no longer holds water. Yahoo certainly knew it was helping to arrest political dissidents and journalists, not just ordinary criminals. The company must answer for what it is doing at the US congressional hearing set for February 15.”

The foreign-based news website Boxun.com posted on February 5 the plea of cyberdissident Li’s lawyer, Zhang Sizhi, at an appeal court hearing in February 2004. Zhang said his client, who used the e-mail address libertywg@yahoo.com.cn and user-name lizhi34100, had been sentenced on the basis of data handed over by Yahoo! Hong Kong in a report dated August 1, 2003.

Li, a 35-year-old ex-civil servant from Dazhou (South-West), had been sentenced on December 10, 2003 to eight years in prison for “inciting subversion.” He had been arrested the previous August after he criticized in online discussion groups and articles the corruption of local officials.

Local sources said Yahoo! Hong Kong’s cooperation with the police was also mentioned in the court’s verdict on Li.

The US house of Representatives Committee on International Relations will hold a hearing on February 15 about the ethical responsibilities of Internet firms. Yahoo! has been invited to attend.

49 cyberdissidents and 32 journalists are in prison in China for posting on the Internet articles and criticism of the authorities.

For the Shi Tao case


Create your blog with Reporters without borders: www.rsfblog.org




In this country
3 June - China
“Tank Man” photo displayed outside Chinese embassy in Paris on eve of Tiananmen Square massacre
2 June - China
All references to Tiananmen Square massacre closely censored for 20 years
12 May - China
Foreign reporters prevented from working in Sichuan a year after earthquake
24 April - China
Concern that detained Tibetan magazine editor is being tortured
25 March - China
Government blocks access to YouTube

in the annual report
China - Annual report 2008
China - Annual report 2007
China - Annual report 2006

reports
4 May 2009 - Nepal
Mission report : A call to end violence and impunity
2 April 2009 - Pakistan
Fact-finding visit by Reporters Without Borders to Swat “valley of fear”
16 March 2009 - Afghanistan
Report of fact-finding mission : Press freedom in free-fall in run-up to presidential election
archives

Asia archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives

Asia press releases
3 June - North Korea
Pyongyang judges asked to be lenient with two American journalists
3 June - Afghanistan
US forces arrest a journalist in Khost
2 June - China
Blocking of Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Blogger deprives Chinese of Web 2.0
2 June - Sri Lanka
Press freedom activist badly beaten in Colombo, hospitalised
29 May - Sri Lanka
Journalists trying to cover fate of Tamils are threatened, obstructed