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China launches website for civilians to report leak of military information

The reporting website is in tune with the “clean cyberspace” objectives underlined at last month’s 19th Communist Party of China congress.

world Updated: Nov 23, 2017 08:02 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times, Beijing
China,Communist Party,People’s Liberation Army
The central military commission also wants citizens to look out for civilians who pose as military officers.(Reuters File)

China has launched a website where citizens can report any leaks of military information or news reports that “insult” the armed forces or target the Communist Party (CPC) leadership.

The central military commission, which commands and controls the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), announced the launch of the website over the weekend, urging citizens to provide information either anonymously or by using their real names.

“Illicit behaviour includes falsifying a military unit or membership, publishing information that is harmful or insulting to the military, attacking the CPC leadership over the PLA, and using online accounts without approval or revealing a soldier’s personal identity,” the PLA Daily reported.

The reporting website is in tune with the “clean cyberspace” objectives underlined at last month’s 19th CPC congress.

“The purpose of the new platform is also to convey the spirit of the 19th National Congress of the CPC, create a better network management system, and maintain a clean cyberspace that is relevant to the military,” the report said.

The new platform classified the tip-offs in separate categories — websites, new media, information that is harmful to the army, and irregular online behaviour of military members, the report said.

Citizens have been urged to focus on news reports that share “illicit” information.

“Military information is most often leaked through news reports on research and meetings because of improper screening,” Li Daguang, a professor at the PLA’s National Defence University, told the state media.

China has earlier arrested journalists for leaking “state secrets”.

The CMC also wants citizens to look out for civilians who pose as military officers.

“One Sina Weibo user named “junhuo hanmeimei” was investigated by authorities in December 2016, when she posted photos of herself in a military uniform, claiming that she was an officer,” reported 81.cn, another PLA website.

The reports didn’t mention whether those who report will be rewarded.

Earlier this year, the Beijing City National Security Bureau offered citizens to up to $73000 for spotting foreign spies in the capital.

First Published: Nov 22, 2017 20:09 IST