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China 5 January 2004

Internet repression: Reporters Without Borders’ plea falls on deaf ears

Reporters Without Borders wrote at the beginning of December appealing to 14 companies in the Internet sector to put pressure on the Chinese government to lift censorship of the Internet and to release jailed cyberdissidents.

To date, not one of the chief executive officers of the companies contacted have deigned to reply. The international press freedom organisation therefore calls on the media to challenge the CEOs listed below to explain their failure to respond

Reporters Without Borders chose 14 European, North American, Japanese and South Korean firms with business links to China in the Internet sector. Some of them even directly involved with Chinese government repression, by selling them surveillance equipment. Others simply closed their eyes to what was going on because of their business interests. All of them should feel responsible, it said, for the plight of China’s embattled Internet-users.

The organisation also publishes a monthly Internet Repression report that lists violations of freedom of expression on the Net in China.

List of CEOs contacted:

-  John Chambers, Cisco
-  Steven A. Ballmer, Microsoft (copy to William H. Gates, founder)
-  Craig R. Barrett, Intel
-  Charles Dehelly, Thomson
-  Frank A. Dunn, Nortel
-  Carleton S. Fiorina, Hewlett-Packard
-  Guerrino De Luca, Logitech (copy to Daniel Borel, founder)
-  Lawrence J.Ellison, Oracle
-  Hajime Sasaki, NEC (board chairman)
-  Kun-Hee Lee, Samsung
-  Scott G. McNelly, Sun Microsystems
-  Samuel J. Palmisano, IBM
-  Terry Semel, Yahoo ! (copy to Jerry Yang, founder)
-  Serge Tchuruk, Alcatel

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

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

Asia archives
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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