JUNE 30, 2005
Posted: July 28, 2005

Li Jianping, freelancer

The Committee to Protect Journalists condemned the imprisonment of Internet journalist Li Jianping on suspicion of defamation.

Authorities detained Li on May 27 in Zibo, a city in northeastern China’s Shandong Province, and formally arrested him for defamation on June 30, according to ChinaEForum, a U.S.-based dissident news forum. Charges had not been filed.

Local police had summoned the journalist to the police station days before detaining him, Li’s wife told the editors of ChinaEForum. She also said that government-employed Internet-control personnel had searched his computer.

Li, 39, wrote frequently for overseas news Web sites banned in China, such as Boxun News, Epoch Times, China Democracy and ChinaEWeekly. Some of his articles directly criticized Chinese Communist Party leadership, including former and current Chinese presidents Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao. Just days before his detention, Li wrote a strongly critical analysis of Hu Jintao’s policy toward Taiwan, posted on ChinaEWeekly on May 17. It was unclear which of his articles led to his detention.