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via Feminist Voices / Li Maizi

Anti-Trump feminists banned from social media in China

‘They want to take away our voice’

An online community of feminists has been blocked from Chinese social media this week after sharing a series of anti-Trump posts. 

The group, known as “Feminist Voice”, were given a 30-day ban from social networking site Sina Weibo on Monday. According to them, the block was an attempt to censor their criticism of Trump – and came six days after the group posted a Guardian article slamming the US president’s “aggressively misogynistic, homophobic, transphobic and racist policies”. The piece went on to urge readers to hold an “international strike” for women’s reproductive rights on March 8.

Weibo reportedly told the group that the block was down to shared content that “violated national laws and regulations”. 

“We are guessing that it’s because we sent out some tweets calling for a women’s strike action against Trump,” Feminist Voice editor Xiong King told Radio Free Asia. “We have had large numbers of posts deleted in the past, but this is the first time we have been completely prevented from posting.”

She added that the group, which has over 80,000 followers, was now being “being prevented from posting for 30 days.” 

“It’s just the beginning,” Lu Pin, a founder of Feminist Voices, told the New York Times. “This is about attacking civil society... They want to take away our voice.”

While the reasons behind the block remain a bit vague, it’s likely to have something to do with the growing tensions between the US and China. By now, Trump’s disdain for the country is no secret – he’s been spouting anti-China (Jina) rhetoric for months, and has recruited a largely anti-China cabinet. This has led to a more cautious, wary approach from the Chinese, who apparently want to keep things cordial. In a propaganda directive leaked to the China Digital Times last month, it was revealed that all newsrooms were being requested to handle stories about Trump “carefully”. It added that “unauthorised criticism” of his words or actions was “not allowed.”