By Will Henney February 21, 2022
Renowned Chinese novelist Geling Yan has been disappeared from the Chinese internet for calling President Xi Jinping a “human trafficker.”
Yan is one of the most accomplished writers in the Mandarin-speaking world. Several of her works have been adapted for film, including the 2017 movie “Youth,” adapted from her novel “You Touched Me.”
A video of a woman chained up by her spouse in the city of Xuzhou has been doing rounds on Chinese social media. The woman, who has eight children, was found in a hut in impoverished and freezing conditions. After denying the woman had been abducted, last week authorities arrested three people, including the husband.
According to The Times, an investigation found out that the woman had been trafficked and sold to the husband.
The video sparked outrage on social media. Commenting on the story during an interview with retired Chinese sociologist Zhou Xiaozheng, Yan said that, at the height of the country’s one-child policy, President Xi was responsible for human trafficking. Many baby girls were abandoned and the government put a high price on the adoption of Chinese babies by foreigners.
Zhou accused the government of facilitating human trafficking, citing high adoption fees as proof.
Yan concurred, saying: “Right, Xi Jinping is a human trafficker. Damn it.”
After the interview, Chinese censors appear to have scrubbed her off the Chinese internet. Her works are no longer available online, her name does not appear in searches on China’s largest social media site Weibo, and on Baidu, searches for her name produce results from before 2000, and articles by the state media.