authorities have shut down an online discussion forum that
reported on anti-corruption protests in a village in the
country's south as well as a Web site serving ethnic Mongolians,
overseas monitors said Tuesday.
China routinely shuts down or blocks Web sites that operate
outside of government control, but the issue has received
heightened international attention in recent weeks with the
publication of new rules aimed at stifling online dissent.
Radio Free Asia, a U.S.-based broadcaster, said an online forum
that covered protests in the village of Taishi has been closed.
It said the site had been popular among academics, journalists
and rights activists.
Residents of Taishi, which is near the manufacturing hub of
Guangzhou, had demanded that their village chief be removed from
office and investigated for allegations of embezzlement and
Several villagers were reportedly injured in a clash with police
last month when they tried to prevent police from seizing
accounting ledgers that they said contained evidence of
local authorities have refused to comment.
The Taishi protest came amid a series of increasingly bold
actions by villagers around China to bring attention to
grievances ranging from pollution to corruption and illegal land
Meanwhile, the Paris-based group Reporters Without Borders said
China had shut down an online forum for ethnic Mongolian
students, called www.ehoron.com, for allegedly hosting
separatist content. Attempts Tuesday to view the page called up
a message that said: "You are not authorized to view this page."
The press group said Beijing's controls on ethnic minorities
were more restrictive than for the rest of China's population.
It said the government also temporarily closed the Web site of a
law firm in China's Inner Mongolia region, called
www.monhgal.com. That site could be accessed Tuesday.
China last month issued new rules banning Internet news services
from inciting illegal assemblies, marches and demonstrations as
well as prohibiting activities on behalf of unauthorized civil