Erik's picture

A Modest Proposal

Last week, I read an article on a Slovak blogging website about involuntary organ donations in China. After reading it I have to conclude that what is going on in the world nowadays is worse even than the events of the WWII. Although, maybe we are just better informed...

The article outlines how they kill prisoners in order to use them as organ donors. It is not only those sentenced to the capital punishment or the victims of accidents. Often, people in labour camps disappear under mysterious circumstances.

A year ago, when I visited Oxford, I saw a Chinese exhibition about the Falun Gong. It is a movement associated with meditation and the philosophy of harmony and independence, and its growing popularity is a needle in the eye of the establishment. The members are being persecuted, tortured and executed, and their organs are offered for transplants. There was a painting of an organ harvesting ‘operation' (above)...pretty awful.

Foreign Students's picture

Foreign Fridays Fact: China

As part of Foreign Fridays, we explore a different country each week through its most unusual, amusing and odd facts. If you want your country to appear, then simply get in contact with us either in the comments below or through Facebook or Twitter.

This week it is the turn of China:

On the first day of Chinese New Year, many people, particularly
Buddhists, abstain from eating meat as they believe
that it will ensure they enjoy a long life.

We have reached the final New Year related Foreign Fridays Fact, in what has been a busy January, full of celebrations. And this week we have possibly the most famous of them all- Chinese New Year. 

In China the New Year's celebrations last for 15 days, with New Year's Day counting as day 1. During this time most people take time off work to be with family and friends, and many travel back to their home town or village. Trains, buses, roads, and planes all become packed out with people travelling across the country.

Foreign Students's picture

Giant Pandas Arrive at Edinburgh Zoo

Two giant pandas are to be the first to live in the UK for 17 years after they were flown over from China to Edinburgh Zoo on Sunday. Tian Tian, meaning ‘Sweetie', and Yang Guang, meaning ‘Sunshine', are said to be settling in well but are still a little jet lagged.

The pandas arrived as part of developing links between Scotland and China, and have been lent to the zoo from Bifengxia Panda Base. After a couple of weeks of settling in to their new home, they will go on show to the public from Friday 16th December and are expected to stay at the zoo for at least the next ten years.

Five Years Effort

The pandas have a brand new £250,000 enclosure and Edinburgh Zoo's director of business operations, Gary Wilson, revealed:

"They are getting on very well. We were really surprised how well they settled into their enclosure. They are obviously quite jet lagged. They are in a strange sequence of sleeping for two hours and eating for two hours, a bit like most humans when they fly half way around the world."

The pair were transported on a nine-hour flight during which they ate a mixture of bamboo, apples, mineral water and a special cake. As they arrived in Scotland it marked the culmination of five years of effort by the zoo and they were greeted by crowds of people all hoping for a glimpse.

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