Chinese sailors this week threw flowers into the sea to mark a key but little-known victory against then-Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) forces, who fled to Taiwan after losing the Chinese Civil War to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in 1949.
China’s military periodically likes to remind Taiwan it still considers the nation one of its strategic priorities, and in September last year held three days of live-fire drills in the Taiwan Strait.
After 1949, KMT forces retained control of several small island groups along the coast of eastern China, from where they launched guerrilla raids into China and harassed Chinese shipping.
While most were later abandoned as being too distant to protect from Taiwan, some were taken by force by China, including the Yijiangshan Islands (一江山戰役), which fell in 1955 in a crucial psychological defeat for the KMT.
In a statement late on Monday, the Chinese Ministry of Defense showed pictures of sailors throwing flowers into the sea near the islands and bowing their heads in memory on the deck of a warship, ahead of next week’s traditional tomb-sweeping holiday.
“The naval ship Dabieshan carried out a solemn ceremony to remember the martyrs who gloriously sacrificed themselves in the battle for the Yijiangshan Islands,” the ministry said.
Reporters Without Borders has accused the Algerian government of taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to “settle scores” with independent journalists, including those covering long-running anti-government protests. In a statement signed with Algerian non-governmental organizations, the watchdog on Thursday called for the immediate release of its correspondent, Khaled Drareni, who has been in pretrial detention since Sunday after being charged with inciting an unarmed gathering and endangering national unity. Drareni has been arrested several times for covering the “Hirak” anti-government protests held in the capital, Algiers, every Friday since February last year. Imprisoning people during a pandemic is “an act of physical endangerment,”
Vietnam has lodged an official protest with China following the sinking of a Vietnamese fishing boat that it said had been rammed by a Chinese maritime surveillance vessel near islands in the South China Sea. The Vietnamese fishing vessel, with eight fishermen onboard, was fishing near the Paracel Islands (Xisha Islands, 西沙群島) on Thursday when it was rammed and sunk by the Chinese vessel, the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement posted on a government Web site yesterday. All of the fishermen were picked up by the Chinese vessel alive and were transferred to two other Vietnamese fishing vessels
DIVIDED YOUTH: There is a belief that overseas students see themselves as superior, which is compounded by perceptions of their extreme wealth and multiple nationalities Chinese students flying home from overseas to escape the COVID-19 pandemic face a frosty reception from sections of the public who view them as wealthy, spoiled — and potentially contaminated. The number of officially reported cases in China has dwindled dramatically over the last month, but the country is now taking drastic steps to try and stem a second wave of infections brought in from abroad. With most international flights canceled and nearly all foreigners barred from entering the country, the vast majority of returnees are Chinese nationals, including many students. The situation has exposed animosities over class and privilege in Chinese society,
An Australian graduate student arrested for spying and expelled from North Korea last year said that he was threatened with a firing-squad execution and told not even US President Donald Trump could save his “sorry arse.” Among the crimes Alek Sigley was accused of committing was posting a picture of a toy tank on Instagram, which his interrogators told him was military espionage. Sigley, 30, was studying for a master’s degree in Korean literature at Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang when he went missing in June last year, sparking alarm. A fluent speaker of Korean, he had written articles for several publications