BY RICHARD FINNEY
Expectations that China might be more tolerant of political dissent under the country’s new president, Xi Jinping, are fading as the ruling Chinese Communist Party cracks down on grassroots anti-corruption efforts and strengthens controls on online discussion, a democracy and human rights advocacy group said on Thursday.
In its “Freedom in the World” report for 2014, U.S.-based Freedom House listed China as among the world’s worst-rated countries for political rights and civil liberties, with combined scores of 6.5 close to the bottom of the rights group’s ranking scale of 1-7 and unchanged from last year’s.
"There was no change in China’s score this year. It remained a 7 on political rights and a 6 on civil liberties, and overall it’s really one of the poorest performers in Asia and still holds more than half of the people in the world who are rated Not Free in 'Freedom in the World,'" Sarah Cook, Asia research analyst for Freedom House, told RFA.
BY NICK CLARK, THE INDEPENDENT
Chimerica, dubbed a “dazzling thriller,” started at the Almeida Theatre before transferring to the West End. It was developed over six years by Headlong.
It follows the fictional Joe, a young American photojournalist, after he snaps the iconic image in Tiananmen Square in 1989.
More than two decades on and living in New York, he spots a cryptic message in a Beijing newspaper and sets off to track the unknown hero down.
The Independent praised the play’s “sheer theatrical boldness” and hailed Kirkwood’s “remarkably ambitious, three-hour exploration of the fast-changing and complex relationship between the United States and China”.