Thursday, April 07, 2016

China steps up Panama Papers censorship after leaders' relatives named

Tom Phillips in Beijing, The Guardian
Last modified on Thursday 7 April 2016

Chinese censors have stepped up their censorship of websites, ordering all content related to the Panama Papers to be scrubbed as new revelations emerged of how relatives of some of the country’s top leaders had used secretive offshore companies to store their wealth.

Documents from the leaked Mossack Fonseca database showed the relations of three of the seven members of the Communist party’s elite ruling council, the politburo standing committee, had companies that were clients of the offshore law firm. They included relatives of Chinese president Xi Jinping.

A Communist party censorship directive instructed news organisations to purge all reports, blogs, bulletin boards and comments relating to this week’s highly sensitive revelations.

“Please self-inspect and delete all content related to the ‘Panama Papers’ leak,” the order said according to China Digital Times, a website run by the University of California, Berkeley.

BBC and CNN broadcasts about the revelations have been blocked all week in mainland China.

(More here.)

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