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Rebel China village holds new elections under a cloud

Rain-drenched voters in a Chinese village which rebelled against Communist officials and held landmark democratic elections returned to the polls Monday in a ballot clouded by signs authorities are reasserting their power. Wukan, in south China's Guangdong province, grabbed headlines worldwide in 2011 when locals staged huge protests and drove out Communist Party officials they accused of illegal land grabs and the death of a detained local villager.

Rebel China village holds new elections under a cloud

Rain-drenched voters in a Chinese village which rebelled against Communist officials and held landmark democratic elections returned to the polls Monday in a ballot clouded by signs authorities are reasserting their power. Wukan, in south China's Guangdong province, grabbed headlines worldwide in 2011 when locals staged huge protests and drove out Communist Party officials they accused of illegal land grabs and the death of a detained local villager.

China rebel village votes, but hopes fade for fair poll

By Maxim Duncan WUKAN, China (Reuters) - Villagers in southern Guangdong who launched an open revolt against local authorities in 2011 held an election on Monday amid intensifying pressure against protest leaders, who have either been detained or sought asylum abroad. The government pressure is casting doubt on China's ability to establish grassroots democracy and underscores the limits of China's village elections, over which local governments often assert control.

Rebel China village set for new elections

A Chinese village which held landmark democratic elections after it rebelled against Communist Party officials heads to the polls again on Monday, shadowed by fears that local authorities are reasserting their grip on power. The village of Wukan, in south China's Guangdong province, grabbed headlines worldwide in 2011 when locals staged huge protests and drove out Communist Party officials they accused of illegal land grabs. Protest leaders were swept to power in landmark elections months later.

Taiwan President Ma blinks, agrees to protesters' demands

Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou agreed Saturday to two of the demands made by opponents of a controversial China trade deal, one day before a mass rally called by the protesters. Twelve days after protesters shut down the legislative branch and stormed the government headquarters, Ma agreed to the demands of demonstrators, numbering around 200 and made up mostly of university students, that the agreement on trade in services signed in June last year be reviewed and voted on clause-by-clause.

Taiwan President Ma blinks, agrees to protesters' demands

Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou agreed Saturday to two of the demands made by opponents of a controversial China trade deal, one day before a mass rally called by the protesters. Twelve days after protesters shut down the legislative branch and stormed the government headquarters, Ma agreed to the demands of demonstrators, numbering around 200 and made up mostly of university students, that the agreement on trade in services signed in June last year be reviewed and voted on clause-by-clause.

China's Xi talks culture in France but business prevails

After a day devoted to multi-billion-dollar business deals, Chinese leader Xi Jinping trained his sights on culture and history Thursday on the last day of his lavish visit to France. Yet business was still the talk of the day at an economic forum on the margins of the three-day state visit, as French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici called for more Chinese investment in France in a bid to boost jobs and growth.

Taiwan protesters vow mass rally in 'war' against China pact

Taiwanese protestors opposed to a contentious trade pact with China on Thursday vowed to escalate their "war" with the government, calling for a huge weekend rally to increase pressure on President Ma Ying-jeou. The student-led demonstrators who have occupied parliament for more than a week urged people to take to the streets of Taipei on Sunday after failing to reach an agreement with Ma's Kuomintang government. "Ma is not sincere, on the one hand he is willing to talk but the Kuomintang will not back down (on the trade pact).

China earthquake activist freed after five years

A Chinese activist who investigated whether shoddy construction caused the deaths of thousands of children when their schools collapsed in a 2008 earthquake was released Thursday after finishing a five-year jail term, his lawyer said. Writer and campaigner Tan Zuoren was heading home to Chengdu, the capital of the southwestern province of Sichuan, his lawyer Pu Zhiqiang told AFP by phone. "He was released today. Now he's on the way home," Pu said.

China earthquake activist freed after five years

A Chinese activist who investigated whether shoddy construction caused the deaths of thousands of children when their schools collapsed in a 2008 earthquake was released Thursday after finishing a five-year jail term, his lawyer said. Writer and campaigner Tan Zuoren was on his way home to Chengdu, the capital of the southwestern province of Sichuan, his lawyer Pu Zhiqiang told AFP by phone. "He was released today. Now he's on the way home," Pu said.
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