AI reports that 2,4468 people were executed in China’s crackdown on crime. This was reported earlier in the NY Times, but has received surprisingly little attention. By labeling these people as “criminals” China seems to have avoided the kinds of attacks they receive when they jail “activists” … they even got admitted into the WTO.
“Serious human rights violations increased in 2001. Thousands of people remained arbitrarily detained or imprisoned across the country for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of expression, association or belief. Thousands of others were detained during the year. Some were held without charge or trial under a system of administrative detention; others were sentenced to prison terms after unfair trials under national security legislation. Torture and ill-treatment remained widespread and appeared to increase against certain groups. A”strike hard” campaign against crime led to a massive escalation in death sentences and executions. The limited and incomplete records available at the end of the year showed that at least 4,015 people were sentenced to death and 2,468 executed; the true figures were believed to be far higher. In the autonomous regions of Xinjiang and Tibet, freedom of speech and religion continued to be severely restricted. Repression of Muslim ethnic groups suspected of nationalist activities increased.”