Washington, D.C., March 7, 2007—The Voice of America’s (VOA) Mandarin Service obtained an exclusive interview with Yu Ling, wife of jailed Chinese dissident Wang Xianoning, as she arrived in Washington early this morning.
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Yu told VOA that she will sue Yahoo for damages and an apology because the company’s Hong Kong office provided information about her husband’s e-mail accounts to Chinese authorities. Her husband, Wang Xianoning, was arrested by Chinese police and sentenced in 2003 to ten years in prison for publishing what the Chinese government called “subversive” articles on the Internet.
“We in the United States feel strongly about allowing the free flow of ideas and discussion on the Internet and elsewhere,” said VOA Director Dan Austin. “Our interview with Mrs. Yu will be heard in China on our Mandarin Service as well as on our broadcasts worldwide.”
Human rights groups have, in recent years, accused Yahoo of providing Chinese authorities with information that has led to the imprisonment of several dissidents, and the Paris-based Reporters Without Borders says that Wang Xianoning is one of 50 individuals who have been imprisoned by China for their activities on the Internet.
Yahoo has responded by saying that it must obey Chinese laws to do business there and that their operations in China benefit millions of people who otherwise would have no Internet access.
VOA’s report in English of the interview is posted on the Internet at http://www.voanews.com/english/2007-03-07-voa43.cfm. For more information about VOA’s Chinese Branch go to www.voachinese.com.
The Voice of America, which first went on the air in 1942, is a multimedia international broadcasting service funded by the U.S. government through the Broadcasting Board of Governors. VOA broadcasts more than 1,000 hours of news, information, educational, and cultural programming every week to an estimated worldwide audience of more than 115 million people. Programs are produced in 45 languages.
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