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China to ban movies about 'evil cults'

2011-12-15 21:13

Beijing - China is seeking to ban movies which stir up social instability, glamourise terrorism or promote opposition to the law, according to proposed new rules unveiled on Thursday, as the government seeks further controls on threats to its control.

Films must also not promote drug taking, threaten religious harmony or propagate religious fanaticism, the government stated in the draft rules, posted on state websites and carried by the official Xinhua news agency.

The promotion of "evil cults" and superstition or the revelation of state secrets will be banned too.


The draft rules, which do not elaborate on definitions for what it to be proscribed, are being publicised to seek opinions from public before being put into effect. It was not stated when they would start to be enforced.

China's ruling Communist Party, which values stability above all else, brooks little dissent to its control, and has been tightening the clamps ahead of a tricky leadership transition which begins late next year.

While movies and television shows are already subject to wide ranging censorship in China, the restrictions are easy to skirt thanks to pervasive piracy both online and in the form of illicit DVDs widely and cheaply available on street corners.

Yet the government is also waging a campaign against vulgarity, pornography and "rumours" carried by massively popular Twitter-like microblogging sites such as Sina's Weibo.

Officials have voiced worries about the feverish growth of microblogs, which can be used to send information and comments unwelcome to the ruling Communist Party's censors.

Read more on:    china  |  movies  |  censorship
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