In late September 2010, Guangzhou’s Southern Metropolis Daily published a report on a Beijing security firm, Beijing Anyuanding Security Technology Services Company Limited, whose principal business is intercepting and holding rights petitioners in the capital on behalf of local governments — and operating so-called “black jails” completely above the law in which to hold these petitioners. The news quickly sparked anger across China, exposing the evils of the national policy of “stability preservation,” which has put local governments under immense pressure to control the flow of rights petitioners to Beijing to seek redress for wrongs against them. In this cartoon, posted by the Kunming-based studio Yuan Jiao Man’s Space (圆觉漫时空) to, the artist depicts conditions inside the “black jails” operated by the private Beijing Anyuanding Security Technology Services. Rights petitioners are tortured by grey-clad private security employees and forced to sign confessions. At bottom left is a stack of broken signs that say “Petition.”

David Bandurski

CMP Director

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