World Bulletin / News Desk
China has issued new internet regulations increasing Communist party control over online news providers, the latest step in the country's push to tighten its policing of the web.
The ruling party oversees a vast apparatus designed to censor online content deemed politically sensitive, maintaining that such measures are necessary for the protection of national security.
Sites blocked due to their content or sensitivity, among them Facebook and Twitter, cannot be accessed in China without special software that allows users to bypass the strict controls.
New regulations released by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) Tuesday will increase party control over who can publish what online, taking effect June 1.
All websites, apps, forums, blogs, microblogs, social media accounts, instant messaging and live streaming platforms and other entities that select or edit news will need a license to post reports or commentary about the government, economy, military, foreign affairs, and social issues, the CAC said.
Such online news service providers must "correctly guide public opinion" and "serve the cause of socialism" while "safeguarding national and public interests", it said.
Business and editorial operations must be kept separate, and those who do not receive public funding will not be allowed to conduct original reporting, it added.
Staff at online outlets must undergo governmental training and assessment, and receive official accreditation, while top editors must be approved.
Additionally, no Chinese outlets may set up a joint venture with a foreign partner without undergoing a "security assessment" through the State Council Information Office.
Online news providers who fail to comply with the new regulations will have their licenses revoked and receive fines of up to 30,000 yuan ($4,352).
The new guidelines come after the passing of a controversial cybersecurity bill last November, which also tightened restrictions on online freedom of speech.
Paris-based monitoring group Reporters Without Borders last week ranked China as the fifth worst country in the world for press freedom, coming in 176th out of 180 countries, just one place ahead of war-torn Syria.
Ganira Pashayeva says western countries tolerate groups like PKK who have killed thousands in Turkey
Xi told some 2,300 delegates at the imposing Great Hall of the People that the party must "resolutely oppose" any actions that undermine its leadership as it steers a course through a high-stakes period in its development.
Suspect is widow of slain Filipino terrorist leader and former wife of Daesh-linked Singaporean
Military hunting for around 20 fighters holding hostages
A truck carrying police officers was targeted in Quetta, capital of southwestern Balochistan
Jeepney operators and drivers held nationwide strike Monday and Tuesday
New satellite imagery shows at least 288 Muslim villages partially or totally burned since Aug. 25, Human Rights Watch says
Dr. Mahmud Bin Ahmad, a former university professor, is believed to have channeled PHP30 million to fund Daesh assault
First presidential-level meeting on occupied Karabakh in over a year takes place in Geneva
30 militants, 5 troops killed in Maruf district of southern Kandahar province
The five-yearly congress, which opens Wednesday, will give Xi an opportunity to enhance his control over the world's second largest economy by stacking the halls of power with loyalists.
The incident happened near the Kharlachi checkpoint in Kurram district in the restive tribal belt bordering Afghanistan.
Voting began at 0200 GMT and will end at 1400 GMT. But after a tough campaign and with the electorate split, a second round of voting is a strong possibility, analysts say.
ARMM governor: Need continues to grow for more counterterrorism strategy
Pyongyang slams Australia for standing by the United States on Korean Peninsula tensions
The US navy said Friday that a US aircraft carrier will lead the drill in the coming week, a fresh show of force against North Korea as tensions soar over the hermit state's weapons programme.