The media have published the horrendous stories of thousands of kidnapped children forced into slave labour in Shanxi China.
A Times report
"More than 1,000 children may have been kidnapped and sold into slave labour in a brutal human trafficking ring that has shocked and outraged China.
"The children, some as young as eight, worked in brick kilns for sixteen hours a day with meagre food rations. They were guarded by fierce dogs and thugs who beat their prisoners at will.
"Many were abducted right off the streets of cities in the region and sold to factories and mines for as little as 400 Yuan (£27). The unfolding scandal, involving negligent law enforcement and even collusion between government officials and slave masters, burst into the open this week.
"Children as young as eight have been among the workers forced to haul bricks for up to twenty hours a day without pay, living on little more than steamed bread and water and living in squalid conditions in huts that were locked at night and guarded by dogs and thugs. Many of those rescued showed gruesome injuries from burns and beatings.
"Since the scandal first broke last month, after a group of four hundred parents posted a letter on the internet pleading with the authorites to help and a television journalist began an investigative report, several hundred workers have been freed and dozens of children have been found".
The Times later also revealed, "However, there are fears that amid the initial blaze of publicity, some of the kiln owners have moved their workers to other locations to hide them from police raids."
"Last weekend, China’s censors issued an order to ease up on the bad news. Newspapers have been told to carry only state approved reports. They put a stop to the work of Henan television journalist Fu Zhenzhong who took up the cause of 400 families who posted an internet appeal and who them went undercover and secretly filmed Shanxi’s brick kilns and accompanied distraught parents seeking their missing sons."
The International Herald Tribune reported a similar story with front page pictures, it reports,
"Internet-fueled outrage over the scandal also bubbled anew with the appearance of photographs of Communist Party disciplinary officials in the region where the scandal erupted playing cards during work hours.
The photos, taken on Tuesday in Hongtong County, appeared to confirm impressions of corruption and indolence among local authorities, amid allegations that slave labour operations received official protection."
"Investigations have been spearheaded largely by parents searching the mountains of southern Shanxi for missing sons. One group claiming to represent 400 fathers circulated an open letter online saying 1,000 children were being held and accusing officials of ignoring or obstructing their searches."
"Wang Dongji, a Communist Party branch secretary at a village in Shanxi, was being investigated after his son was found to be an owner of a kiln were thirty two people were starved, beaten and forced to work fourteen hours or more a day."
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