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Writer and blogger Yang detained in China

Chinese-Australian writer Yang Hengjun has been detained by Chinese authorities, reports SBS News.

A critic of the Chinese government and an advocate for democracy, Yang previously worked in the Chinese Foreign Affairs Department in Beijing before becoming an Australian citizen. He has written a series of spy novels including Fatal Weakness, Fatal Weapon and Fatal Assassination, which are self-published on his Chinese- and English-language blog. During his PhD in China Studies at the University of Technology Sydney, Yang started the blog as an experiment, as part of his dissertation titled ‘The Internet and China’s Future’.

He had been living in the US with his wife and her child, before flying from New York to Guangzhou on 18 January, despite warnings from friends that it was too dangerous for him to travel to China. ‘On 23 January the Chinese authorities informed the Australian Embassy in Beijing that they have detained Yang,’ said the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in a statement.

In March 2011 Yang was feared missing, with the Australian reporting that he had disappeared from Guangzhou airport and suggesting he may have been detained as a result of government crackdown. He later contacted his family in Australia to say his disappearance was a ‘misunderstanding’ and that he had been sick.


Category: Local news