Hong Kong protests: Armed mob storms Yuen Long station
A mob attacks travellers at a Hong Kong train station, injuring 36, after another weekend of protests.

Source: BBC News - China | 21 Jul 2019 | 6:17 pm

Underground research
The world’s deepest underground laboratory in southwest China’s Sichuan Province started construction on a major new physical research project on Saturday, according to the laboratory.The project is among the most important of China’s scientific and technological infrastructure push during the 13th Five-Year Plan period from 2016 to 2020, which aims to focus on cutting-edge research in particle physics and other fields. The 2,400-meter-deep laboratory, which was put into use in 2010, is the deepest underground laboratory in the world.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

International students
A total of 63,000 international students were funded by Chinese government scholarships in 2018, accounting for 12.8 percent of the total foreign students in China, the Ministry of Education said on Saturday. According to the ministry, 70 percent of the funded students were pursuing master or doctoral degrees. China has signed official education exchange agreements with more than 180 countries and territories.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

The young flying high
China’s outbound tourism market during the summer vacation saw more tourists born after 2000, an new report said. The number of post-2000s tourists traveling abroad soared 346 percent year on year, according to the report by Chinese online travel platform Fliggy and Alipay. The post-1990s and post-1980s generations still account for the major share.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

Demand for imported goods is still strong
Chinese merchandise firms plan to scale up their imports as Chinese consumers’ demand for such products remains robust, an industrial survey showed.About 9.7 percent of the 945 retail and wholesale enterprise respondents said they would increase consumer product imports in the next year, 2.5 percentage points higher than those planning to decrease their imports, according to a survey by the Ministry of Commerce.Among the 1,059 surveyed consumers, 24.1 percent planned more purchases of imported products, with strong demand for food, maternal and infant products, cosmetics, watches and glasses, jewelry and passenger vehicles.Nearly 80 percent of consumer respondents had purchased imported consumer products at least once, which accounted for over 10 percent of the same-category purchases of 41.7 percent of the consumers.Brand is the top consideration when merchandise firms import consumer products, while safety also matters in food and maternal and infant products, and design in apparel and jewelry, the survey showed.The survey is part of the ministry’s efforts to help organize the second China International Import Expo in Shanghai in November.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

It is not always fun and games
The National Health Commission has released an expert report on gaming disorder prevention and treatment after the World Health Organization listed it as a new disease in late May.The average prevalence rate, or the proportion of people found to have a gaming disorder, remains at about 5 percent of the total population, according to the consensus, warning that men and the underage are more susceptible to the disorder.In line with the WHO definition, the consensus defined the gaming disorder as the uncontrollable and persistent playing of video and computer games to the extent that it takes precedence over other interests and daily activities, and continues and escalates despite dire consequences.Video game addiction impairs people’s physical and psychological health and social functioning.The medical condition is associated with inadequate social support or interpersonal communication, poor relationships with teachers and peers, inappropriate parenting, and absence of guardians, the consensus said.Stressing prevention as the key, the experts called for concerted efforts of family, schools and society in caring for the youth and raising public awareness.They also urged medical practitioners to stay prudent in diagnosis and treatment.China is home to the world’s largest Internet population totaling 829 million and the market scale of online games hit 248 billion yuan (US$36 billion) in 2018.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

Tiangong-2 returns to Earth in flaming glory
After orbiting the Earth 16,209 times, it burned itself into ashes, flaming out in a dazzling display as its last gift to humanity.China’s space lab Tiangong-2 reentered the Earth’s atmosphere under control on Friday night, with a small amount of its debris falling into the predetermined safe sea area in the South Pacific, the China Manned Space Agency said.Tiangong-2’s controlled reentry into the atmosphere marks the successful completion of all the tasks in the space lab phase in China’s manned space program, said Zhou Jianping, chief designer of the program.“It’s hard to say goodbye to Tiangong-2 but considering reliability and safety-related factors, we have to drive it out of orbit,” said Zhu Zongpeng, chief designer of Tiangong-2 from the China Academy of Space Technology.“To let Tiangong-2 ‘retire’ by choice is to ensure the absolute safety of its departure,” Zhu said.“As the first to enter Tiangong-2, I’m happy that the space lab has successfully completed its tasks, though I’m also missing it since it was our home in space,” said astronaut Jing Haipeng, who spent his 50th birthday on Tiangong-2 on October 24, 2016.“My memory of the 30 days on Tiangong-2 with Chen Dong is still fresh. We conducted many scientific experiments such as raising silkworms and growing plants in space,” Jing said.“China is stepping up efforts to prepare for the construction of the space station. We are confident that a space station belonging to the Chinese people is coming soon,” he added.“The 30 days on Tiangong-2 were the happiest and most unforgettable experience in my life, and the most precious and valuable time to cherish,” said astronaut Chen Dong.“Tiangong-2 was the place to realize my space dream,” said Chen, adding that “China’s space station, a more powerful, advanced and comfortable home for astronauts, is awaiting us.”The space lab is the prelude to the construction of China’s space station, aiming to test the key technologies needed for the permanent space station, Zhou said.Tiangong-2, an improved version of Tiangong-1, is considered China’s first space lab. Launched on September 15, 2016, the space lab has worked in orbit over 1,000 days, much longer than its two-year designed lifespan.Comprising an experiment module and a resource module, the space lab has a total length of 10.4 meters, a maximum diameter of 3.35 meters and a takeoff weight of 8.6 tons.After its solar panels are unfolded, its wingspan was 18.4 meters.Key breakthroughsTiangong-2 docked with both the Shenzhou-11 manned spaceship and Tianzhou-1 cargo spacecraft.China made breakthroughs in a series of key technologies through the Tiangong-2 mission, such as medium-term space residence of astronauts and in-orbit propellant refueling, accumulating important experience for building and operating China’s future space station.More than 60 space science experiments and technological tests have been carried out on the space lab.For instance, the first-ever cold atom clock working in space was tested on Tiangong-2.The clock was so accurate that it would only lose one second every 30 million years.A device named POLAR installed atop Tiangong-2, which was jointly developed by Chinese and European scientists, has detected 55 gamma-ray bursts, the strongest explosions in the universe.China also tested a microsatellite, which was launched from Tiangong-2 and took high-resolution pictures of the connected space lab and Shenzhou-11.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

Violence in Hong Kong condemned
THE government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region condemns violent acts at the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR yesterday, a spokesperson of the HKSAR government said. Some protesters marched to the Liaison Office yesterday after a public procession finished at around 4:30pm, and “maliciously” surrounded and tried to storm the office, some even smeared the Chinese national emblem. The spokesperson said the HKSAR government will strictly deal with it and investigate in accordance with the law, adding the act was a “public defiance of China’s national sovereignty.” “This has posed threats to HKSAR’s public security and ‘one country, two systems’ policy and the Hong Kong society shall not accept it,” the spokesperson said. More than 300,000 Hong Kong residents braved rains for rallies on Saturday afternoon to voice their strong opposition to violence. They also called for maintaining rule of law and safeguarding peace and stability in Hong Kong.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

White paper on Xinjiang traces the history of the autonomous region
XINJIANG has long been an inseparable part of Chinese territory and has never been “East Turkistan,” according to a white paper issued by the State Council Information Office yesterday. Xinjiang was formally included in Chinese territory in the Han Dynasty, according to the white paper titled “Historical Matters Concerning Xinjiang.” From the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220) to the middle and late Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), the vast areas both north and south of the Tianshan Mountains in Xinjiang were called the Western Regions. Later dynasties in the Central Plains kept closer or looser contact with the Western Regions, and the central authorities exercised tighter or slacker administration over Xinjiang, it said. “But all of these dynasties regarded the Western Regions as part of Chinese territory and exercised the right of jurisdiction over Xinjiang,” it said. China is a unified multi-ethnic country, and the various ethnic groups in Xinjiang have long been part of the Chinese nation. Throughout its long history, Xinjiang’s development has been closely related to that of China. The Turks were nomads who originated in the Altai Mountains in the middle of the 6th century. In the late 8th century, the nomadic Turks dissolved as their last khanate collapsed, according to the white paper. “They mixed with local tribes during their migration to Central and West Asia, but these newly formed peoples were fundamentally different from the ancient Turks. Ever since then, Turks have disappeared from China’s northern regions,” the white paper said. From the 18th century to the first half of the 19th century, as the West made a distinction between the various Turkic languages (branches of the Altaic languages), some foreign scholars and writers coined the term “Turkistan” to refer to the region south of the Tianshan Mountains and north of Afghanistan, which roughly covered the area from southern Xinjiang to Central Asia. They called the two areas on either side of the Pamirs “West Turkistan” and “East Turkistan,” it said. At the turn of the 20th century, as “Pan-Turkism” and “Pan-Islamism” made inroads into Xinjiang, separatists in and outside China politicized the geographical concept and manipulated its meaning, inciting all ethnic groups speaking Turkic languages and believing in Islam to join in creating the theocratic state of “East Turkistan,” it added. A political tool In more recent times, hostile forces in and outside China have tried to split China and break it apart by distorting history and facts. “The advocacy of this so-called state has become a political tool and program for separatists and anti-China forces attempting to split China,” the white paper said. The Uygur ethnic group came into being through a long process of migration and integration, the white paper said, adding that it is part of the Chinese nation. In Xinjiang, different cultures and religions coexist, and ethnic cultures have been fostered and developed in the embrace of the Chinese civilization. Islam is neither an indigenous nor the sole belief system of the Uygur people. It has taken root in the Chinese culture and developed soundly in China, the document said. Xinjiang has multiple religions, including Islam, Buddhism, Taoism, Protestantism, Catholicism, and the Eastern Orthodox Church. It has 24,800 venues for religious activities, including mosques, churches, Buddhist and Taoist temples, with 29,300 religious staff, according to the white paper. “Xinjiang always upholds equality for all religions, showing neither favoritism towards nor discrimination against any religion and allowing no religion to be superior to any other religion,” said the white paper. Believers and non-believers enjoy equal rights and obligations, and all law violators, whatever their social background, ethnicity, and religious belief, will be punished in accordance with the law.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

Religious bodies slam US for criticism
CHINESE religious circles have expressed deep indignation and strongly condemned the defamation of China’s freedom of religious belief by some people and entities in the United States, who fabricated reports and held a conference on “promoting religious freedom.” Leaders of several national religious organizations called a meeting in Beijing on Friday to condemn the United States on making an issue of religion to attack China and express their solemn position. Noting that Chinese Christians have benefited from China’s policy of freedom of religious belief, a leader of the China Christian Council said the United States’ accusation against China — in disregard of facts and under the pretext of “religious freedom” — was inconceivable and outrageous. The United States has politicized religion and used religion as a pretext to attack the Communist Party of China and the Chinese government, which is a shameful act of blasphemy, the Christian leader said. A leader of the Islamic Association of China said the Chinese Islamic community is angered by what the United States has done. He said the acts exposed the United States’ double standards as the United States itself is facing a rise in racism. A leader of the Buddhist Association of China said over the past four decades the CPC and the Chinese government have made tremendous efforts in ensuring the freedom of religious belief and no one is in a better position than the more than 200 million religious believers in China to comment on that. The United States invited people engaging in anti-China activities to the conference on so-called promoting religious freedom, which exposed the ugliness of their political deals under the pretext of religion, the leader said. “Every religious believer in China is opposed to that.” Religious figures attending Friday’s meeting said they all agreed that only Chinese religious believers shall have the final say on whether China has the freedom of religious belief. They also urged relevant parties in the United States to stop their despicable farce to leave religion in peace.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 21 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

Hong Kong protests: graffiti, tear gas and riot police
The BBC's Stephen McDonell is amid the pro-democracy protesters as tear gas is fired.

Source: BBC News - China | 21 Jul 2019 | 10:12 am

Pro-China Hong Kong protester calls BBC reporter 'fake news' during broadcast
BBC China correspondent Stephen McDonell was interrupted on air by pro-Beijing protesters in Hong Kong.

Source: BBC News - China | 20 Jul 2019 | 11:03 am

Hong Kong actor Simon Yam stabbed on stage in China
The 64-year-old was attacked while speaking at a promotional event in the city of Zhongshan.

Source: BBC News - China | 20 Jul 2019 | 2:56 am

Zhang Yingying: US man sentenced to life for Chinese student's murder
Brendt Christensen abducted Zhang Yingying on a university campus in 2017 and beat her to death.

Source: BBC News - China | 19 Jul 2019 | 6:30 am

Luxury goods join Hong Kong retail slump as protests bite
Retailers and hotels are among the firms seeing business hit by ongoing protests in Hong Kong.

Source: BBC News - China | 18 Jul 2019 | 10:27 pm

Firefighters to the rescue as river waters swell amid rains
Firefighters across the country had rescued 14,165 people and evacuated 44,630 people stranded in floods by 3pm on Wednesday, the Ministry of Emergency Management said yesterday.The country has dispatched a total of 28,190 firefighters and 5,822 units of firefighting trucks and boats in 2,725 rescue missions for disasters, including floods, landslides and typhoons, it added.To better cope with potential disasters, the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters and the ministry launched joint drills to examine rescue teams’ capability on emergency response and cross-region rescues.More than 7,000 firefighters, 670 boats and over 200,000 pieces of equipment have been spot-checked to ensure safety.Yesterday, the National Meteorological Center continued to issue a blue alert for typhoon Danas in China’s southeast.Meanwhile, water levels in many rivers in east and west China have been rising amid continuous downpours.In southwest Sichuan Province, heavy rainfall in the north since Tuesday has caused flash floods and geological disasters in a variety of localities.The water in the local Qujiang River, a tributary of the major Jialing River, has been rising, causing flooding in many townships. Some buildings have been inundated.In east Anhui Province, water in the Yangtze, China’s longest river, has been rising, with water exceeding warning levels at several hydrological stations.China has seen a record number of rivers being flooded since this year’s high-water season began, according to the Ministry of Water Resources.Hundreds of rivers across the country have reported water exceeding alarm levels, over 80 percent more than the average annual number of such rivers registered since 1998 when severe floods hit China. The water level of Poyang Lake, China’s largest freshwater lake, in east Jiangxi Province, continues to rise, having recently exceeded the warning level, local authorities said yesterday.At 8am yesterday, water at the Xingzi hydrological station at the lake recorded 20.65 meters, measuring 1.65 meters above the warning level.At the same time, the Hukou hydrological station saw the water level reach 20.44 meters which is 0.94 meters above the warning level, according to the provincial water resources department.As of Tuesday, 1,298km-long levees along Poyang Lake and the Yangtze River saw the water exceed warning levels. Jiangxi has deployed more than 39,000 personnel to patrol along the dykes and arranged 190 sets of mechanical equipment for fighting floods.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 12:05 pm

Google's Project Dragonfly 'terminated' in China
The firm's plan to launch a censored search engine in China had faced much criticism.

Source: BBC News - China | 17 Jul 2019 | 6:49 am

Trump: Google should be probed over China treason claim
President Trump tweets he will look into allegations made by the tech billionaire Peter Thiel.

Source: BBC News - China | 16 Jul 2019 | 8:48 am

China's economy grows at slowest pace since 1990s
China's economy has been slowing despite Beijing's efforts to boost spending and cut taxes.

Source: BBC News - China | 15 Jul 2019 | 6:59 am

Mulan: Disney aims to win over China with second take on the legend
No singing and no dragons, but Disney's new take on the legend makes a play for Chinese audiences.

Source: BBC News - China | 10 Jul 2019 | 7:36 pm