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China blocks Reuters' Chinese website - report

China has blocked Reuters' Chinese-language website, Internet freedom monitors said on Friday. The Wall Street Journal's Chinese site was also blocked. Their English-language sites remained accessible.

The blocks appear to be connected to reports of links between JP Morgan Chase and former Prime Minister Wen Jiabao’s daughter Wen Ruchun, who operates as a consultant under the name of Lily Chang, according to several media organisations.

The blocks were revealed by Great Fire, a website that monitors Internet blocking by what is known as the Great Firewall of China.

The press freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders said it “firmly condemns China’s censorship of the Chinese sites of Reuters and the Wall Street Journal. This latest blocking of foreign media websites is indicative of an almost Pavlovian reflex on the part of the government, which does not hesitate to flout freedom of information whenever an embarrassing news item is posted online.

“The authorities have every interest in ending website blocking as it is counter-productive and contrary to China’s constitution principles.”

The Reporters Without Borders statement was reported by the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

The New York Times broke the story about the former premier’s daughter on Thursday. Reuters picked it up and it then spread online.

Last week, a veteran reporter for Reuters was denied a journalist visa for China. ■

Reporters Without Borders