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Taboo Topic Uncensored After Bo Xilai's Purge

When the Chinese Communist Party ousted disgraced official Bo Xilai last week, it made a series of accusations against him, from massive corruption to sexual indiscretions. 2012-10-01 01:32 PM EST Last Updated: 2012-10-12 03:50 PM EST
Disgraced politician Bo Xilai and his former police chief Wang Lijun have both been internationally accused of harvesting organs from living political prisoners, in particular jailed adherents of the Falun Gong spiritual practice. Up until now, Chinese censors have made the topic a taboo, and netizens have had little chance to find out about it, let alone discuss it. 


That seems to be changing now. Shortly after Bo Xilai was purged from the Communist Party last week, the term “live harvest”, or “Huo Zhai” in Chinese, became unblocked on Sina Weibo, China’s largest microblog service. The term is used to describe the crimes of forced organ harvesting, and now a search of “live harvest”, turns up more than 40,000 results.  


That’s not all. Back in March, after Wang Lijun fled to a US Consulate, rumors surfaced he had handed information regarding organ harvesting to US officials. Today, posts appeared in Sina Weibo listing the six pieces of evidence Wang allegedly handed over. These include evidence of forced organ harvesting and a plot between Bo and his political patron, Chinese security chief Zhou Yongkang, to overthrow incoming leader Xi Jinping. 


With the Chinese regime's rigorous internet control these kinds of reverse in censorship are not accidental. Analyst Hong Wei for US-based Sound of Hope Radio says it’s a hint of things to come.


[Hong Wei, China Analyst]:

“After Bo Xilai was sacked from Communist Party and his positions, these kinds of detailed leak of what Wang Lijun gave to the US consulate is a sign that Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao are determined to take down Bo’s faction. First, they want the public to know the severity of Bo’s crimes, and also deal a blow to those supporting Bo, to pave way for handing him a harsher sentence in the future.”


Netizens have expressed outraged over the exposure of forced organ harvesting. And as the 18th Party Congress approaches, the allegations could very well be the elephant in the room.


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