China Digest, August 17, 2012

PUBLISHED : Friday, 17 August, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 17 August, 2012, 4:17am


Delayed passengers rebel

A plane took off from Jiangbei International Airport on Tuesday without 117 passengers who were unhappy that the airline offered them only 100 yuan (HK$122) after the flight was delayed more than three hours, the
Chongqing Morning Post reports. The China Eastern Airlines flight was run by United Airlines, and only 24 people were on board when it took off for Beijing at 11.30pm instead of 7.55pm. The passengers complained that 100 yuan would not cover the taxi that they would have to take when they arrived in Beijing after subway and bus services had stopped. The passengers boarded another plane on Wednesday afternoon.

Mother tries to sell daughter

A 23-year-old woman was caught trying to sell her 10-month-old daughter on the street after a fight with her mother-in-law on Tuesday, reports. The woman was said to have frequently quarrelled with her mother-in-law because of financial problems, and police said the mum threatened to kill herself several days beforehand.


Drug-taker imagines rape

A young woman under the influence of methamphetamine, or Ice, hallucinated that she had been raped and called police in Fuzhou on Monday, reports. Police rushed to the scene, only to find seven young people passed out. Five tested positive for Ice and were detained.

Man kills brother in row

A 51-year-old man stabbed his 49-year-old brother to death in a drunken brawl on Tuesday in Huian county, Quanzhou , reports. Police said the brothers were drinking heavily when an argument began, and the younger man first hit his brother on the head with a glass bottle.


Seawater contaminates wells

Excessive consumption of underground water is resulting in more seawater seeping into the ground of coastal villages in Zhanjiang , and about 600 families are struggling to find alternative freshwater sources, the
Nanfang Daily reports. As the fresh water in wells is used up, the ground is absorbing seawater to fill the void. Residents have stepped up well-drilling, and some now need to be more than 100 metres deep, against just 10 metres in the past.

Boost in Guangzhou flights

China Southern Airlines in Guangzhou is planning to increase the number of flights and transfers to and from Australia, New Zealand and Europe over the next few years, in a bid to compete with Hong Kong and Singapore as a transit hub, reports. The airline signed agreements with five major Australian cities on Wednesday and plans to offer 110 weekly flights to the continent by 2015.


Brother beat sister, 14

A man was detained by police in Nanyang on Tuesday for beating his 14-year-old sister and forcing her to do manual labour, the
Nanyang Morning Post reports. Their parents live elsewhere and sent the girl to stay with her brother, but police said the brother treated her like an indentured servant. She has since been sent to a technical school.

Family agrees organ donation

Organ donations are rare in China, but the family of a 43-year-old man who died in a car crash in Luoyang last week hope their decision to donate his organs saves the lives of others, and prevents other families from suffering the heartbreak they now have to endure, the
Dahe Daily reports.


26 camels killed by trains

A total of 26 camels have been killed by trains this year in Alashan county, south of the Mongolian border, including eight in the past week, China National Radio reports. Many of the animals live in the area, and they often cross the tracks to find fresh grass, or they stand on the high tracks to better enjoy the cool breeze. The eight camels killed this week belonged to one farmer, who said three others were injured by trains. Locals have called for authorities to implement measures to keep camels off the tracks.

Flood-risk families to move

Nearly 1,000 people from 421 households have been told to permanently leave their homes situated in precarious locations along the Yellow River in the autonomous region because of the risk of collapse during the flood season, Xinhua reports.


Air quality stations set up

More than 60 air quality monitoring stations will be running by the end of the year, with the capital, Nanchang , taking the lead in releasing information about extremely fine pollutants known as PM2.5, reports.

Annual park passes issued

Travellers to and from Jiangxi are eligible to buy a year-long pass to all of the forest parks and nature reserves in the province, for just 160 yuan, the
Nanchang Evening News reports. The tickets, 100,000 of which were released on Wednesday, expire next August and holders may visit each location only once.


Urgent blood donor call

Shenyang is the latest city to issue an urgent call for blood donors, as supplies have fallen to dangerous levels during the hot summer, when people tend to donate less, the
Liaoshen Evening News reports. The daily donations have decreased to about 60 litres, while daily demand is twice that.

Teen robbery suspects held

Nine teenagers aged 13 to 16 were recently arrested in connection with more than 40 thefts and robberies, some of which involved victims being threatened with knives, reports. Two 13-year-old suspects were released, but the rest were detained. Children below the age of 16 are exempt from criminal prosecution.


Family hurt defending trees

Five members of a family, including a man aged 65, were attacked and badly injured while trying to stop a gang of 30 people from chopping down trees on the family's land, the
Qilu Evening News reports. The incident occurred on Saturday in Beiwang village, Taian . More than 300 trees were cut down, and the family suspected it was done under orders from a construction company because they had refused a development proposal on their land.

Jobless benefit rises

Provincial authorities are rolling out a plan to raise unemployment benefits in all cities, in an effort to improve the living standards for people who cannot find work, the
Qilu Evening News reports. The benefits have already risen in some cities, including Dongying , which saw a 21 per cent increase to 730 yuan a month, the highest so far in the province. Various adjustments will be made for different cities.


Book fair's first day boost

The ninth annual Shanghai Book Fair saw a strong opening on Wednesday, with both attendance and sales up 20 per cent over the first day of last year's event, the Sh.east day. com reports. Entry to the week-long fair, at the Shanghai Exhibition Centre, costs 10 yuan. The event features several popular authors and more than 150,000 books on display and for sale. More than 34,000 people turned out on the first day, and over 3 million yuan in sales were made.

Six arrested for fake wine

Shanghai police discovered more than 4,000 bottles of counterfeit wine during a recent bust of a gang that was producing and selling imitation Chateau Lafite, a famous French red wine that can sell for 6,000 to 7,000 yuan a bottle, reports. Six people were arrested in Fengxian and Minhang districts. Police said the gang had been selling the imitation bottles in provinces such as Jiangsu and Zhejiang since 2010.