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Death of Policeman Draws Big Controversy: The Zhang Jiyong Case

The mysterious death of police officer Zhang Jiyong (张际勇) has caused a clamor of rumors growing on Chinese social media, with thousands of people questioning his cause of death. This is the second time this month that lack of transparency in the police force and failures in criminal investigation become the focus of public attention.

Manya Koetse

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The mysterious death of police officer Zhang Jiyong (张际勇) has caused a clamor of rumors growing on Chinese social media, with thousands of people questioning his cause of death. This is the second time this month that lack of transparency in the police force and failures in criminal investigation become the focus of public attention.

Zhang Jiyong (张际勇), a 34-year-old traffic police officer from Jiangsu province, suddenly disappeared while on duty on May 17. After being missing for 64 hours, his dead body was found in a nearby river on May 20.

His wife turned to social media to bring her husband’s case to the public’s attention, posting her story and pictures of her deceased husband’s face. Since his face showed traces of blood, severe bruisings and swellings, she alleges her husband was beaten to death [picture link, warning: death, shocking image].

But according to police and medical experts, Zhang died from drowning and there were no signs of homicide – pointing to suicide.

According to iFeng news, Zhang’s wife denies her husband was suffering from any kind of depression or other mental disorder that could have been related to his death.

Under the hashtag of ‘The Wife of Murdered Civil Policeman Zhang Jiyong’ (#遇害民警张际勇妻子#), netizens called on Weibo users to make this topic trending to help Zhang’s wife in her struggle to “find justice”. It hit the number one spot in Weibo’s trending topics list on May 24.

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The case has caused a clamor of rumors growing on Chinese social media, with some linking his death to his involvement in exposing a drugs crime; according to several Chinese media, Zhang’s wife stated that her husband spoke of ‘being followed’ and fearing for his life two days prior to his missing in relation to this drugs investigation.

There are also netizens alleging that Zhang’s hands were tied together when his body was recovered from the water (picture), and that suicide would thus be impossible.

Mostly, the case unleashed a storm of criticism from Chinese netizens about a lack of transparency in the police force and failures in criminal investigation.

Earlier this month, the curious death of Lei Yang also became big news. Lei Yang was a young man from Beijing who died after he was arrested for allegedly visiting a brothel. His wife also demanded that police further investigated this case, as she alleged her husband was beaten to death during his arrest. This case resonates with that of Zhang Jiyong, where netizens and relatives also ask for further investigation into the case.

 

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Zhang’s wife writes on her Weibo account (May 24):

zhangjiyong

“You all say Zhang Jiyong had mental problems, but you were with him at work on the night of the crime, and you’ve confirmed that he acted normal, and that there were no abnormalities up to his death. Yet you give a mental illness as the final conlusion. How can you, as law enforcement, make such logic errors? I ask a public apology from you. And if you won’t apologize, I ask that you come up with evidence for the claim that Zhang was suffering from mental problems. As a family member of the deceased, I have the right to defend Zhang Jiyong’s integrity and honor!”

Within 5 hours of posting, her Weibo post received over 9500 likes, 7500 comments and was shared more than 2400 times.

Except for anger about information lacking, as in the Lei Yang case, netizens are also angry about their comments being deleted by censors. As one popular comment says:

“I think I speak for everyone when I ask: why are our comments being removed? (..) A good policeman was killed, his hands were tied when his body was found, yet the officials still say it is suicide, do you think people are stupid? ? If you have a soul, then why delete our comments? We love our country, let our country love us back!”

For now, since officials have ruled out homicide and have concluded Zhang’s death to be due to ‘death by drowning’, there are no indications that the police will seek for any possible suspects in this case. According to local police, the blood and swellings in Zhang’s face were a “natural reaction” of the body after being in the water for a long time.

But on Weibo, the clamor is not gone yet, with many netizens refusing to believe official reports. As one netizen comments: “We know they are lying, and they know they are lying, and they know we know they are lying, and we know they know we know they are lying – but they are still lying.”

– By Manya Koetse

©2016 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, popular culture, and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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China Local News

Online Anger over Inappropriate Toast by Dutch Watch Brand Executive at Chinese Dinner Party

This is how NOT to do a toast in Dutch!

Manya Koetse

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Instead of teaching guests at a Chinese dinner party how to say “cheers” in Dutch, this viral video shows how the Chinese are told to join in saying “dikke lul,” the Dutch expression for “big d*ck.”

UPDATE: FYI – the videos relating to this incident have been taken offline after the publication of this article. There are no active video links in this article.

The Amsterdam-based watch & jewelry brand Rosefield has recently come under fire within the Chinese community in the Netherlands after a video went viral showing Rosefield’s CEO and its Head of Sourcing proposing an unusual toast at a Chinese dinner party.

The video, that was viewed over 173,000 times on Dutch site Dumpert.nl, shows a woman in a white blouse bringing out a toast, saying:

In Dutch, we say ‘ganbei’ or ‘cheers’ in this way, and it would be nice if you all can say the same, we say: ‘dikke lul.‘”

The people at the table then proceed to toast saying “Dikke lul” – which, in fact, is not the Dutch word for ‘cheers’ but for ‘big dick,’ something that the Chinese people at the table are seemingly not aware of.

On WeChat, Chinese-language newspaper Asian News (华侨新天地) reported about the video and identified the Dutch woman and man at the table as the CPO and CEO of Rosefield Watches, a fast-growing luxury brand that is active in various countries.

Asian News describes the incident as a way of “ridiculing Chinese friends,” and writes it has triggered anger online.

Asian News (华侨新天地) is a Chinese language newspaper founded in 1992. It is mainly distributed in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. Its WeChat account has some 120,200 followers, and the post on the ‘cheers’ video was among its most-well read on WeChat this week.

The blog post noted that ever since the ‘dikke lul’ video has gone viral in the Netherlands, it has become one of the first results showing up when searching for the vulgar expression ‘dikke lul’ on Google.

Although it is not clear where the video was filmed and how it ended up on short video site Dumpert, it is rumored in WeChat groups that it was recorded during the Hong Kong Watch and Clock Fair earlier this month, and that the Chinese guests are business relations of the Dutch brand (unconfirmed).

The comment section on the Dumpert site shows that although some Dutch commenters think the video is funny, there are many who find it “vulgar,” “rude,” and “distasteful.”

Although many (overseas) Chinese expressed anger in various WeChat groups – some expressing regret over a Rosefield watch they recently purchased – the Asia News blog does remind readers that we do not know the context of the video, and whether or not there was a certain pretext or common understanding to the joke.

Nevertheless, the blog states, this kind of behavior is not professional and if a company such as Rosefield wants to earn money in China, “it should also respect Chinese culture and people.”

Although there have been ample discussions about the controversial video on Wechat, there are no online discussions about this issue on Weibo at the time of writing.

Over the past year, many foreign brands became a focus for controversy in China.

In November of 2018, Italian fashion house D&G faced consumer outrage and backlash on Chinese social media for a video that was deemed ‘racist’ to China and for insulting remarks about Chinese people allegedly made by designer Stefano Gabbana.

Swiss investment bank UBS sparked controversy in June for a column which mentioned “Chinese pigs.”

Over this summer, various foreign companies apologized to China for listing ‘Hong Kong’ as a separate country or region on its websites and/or t-shirts.

Still curious about how to actually say ‘cheers’ in Dutch? It’s ‘proost’ and this is how you pronounce it correctly.

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. Please note that your comment below will need to be manually approved if you’re a first-time poster here.

©2019 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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China Food & Drinks

This Is the BBQ Restaurant Jack Ma Visited in Zhengzhou

Jack Ma’s late-night snack means overnight success for this Zhengzhou skewer place.

Manya Koetse

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Whatever Jack Ma does or says makes headlines in China. The superstar Alibaba founder has especially been a topic of discussion over the past week since his meeting with Tesla’s Elon Musk at the World AI Conference in Shanghai, where the two billionaires had a discussion about the risks and rewards of AI development.

But on social media platform Weibo, Chinese netizens have not just been discussing what Jack Ma has been saying over the past few days – what he has been eating has also become a topic that has attracted thousands of views and comments this week.

A BBQ skewer restaurant in Zhengzhou, Henan Province, gained overnight fame after a visit from the business magnate and his group. The Alibaba delegation visited Zhengzhou for a meeting concerning a strategic partnership between Alibaba and the local government.

Jack Ma visited the barbecue skewer restaurant around one o’clock in the morning, and was photographed and filmed by many people standing around.

Ma visited Dehua Pedestrian Street and Zhengdong New Area before arriving at the Zheng Xiwang restaurant. Ma was with a small group of people and spent a total of 700 yuan (around 100 US dollars).

Grilled skewers are popular all across China, but especially in the Zhengzhou region, which is also nicknamed the “holy land of skewers.”

Image via Dianping.com.

The Zheng Xiwang restaurant visited by Ma was founded in 1991 – although it was just a street stall at the time – and has been thriving ever since.

Besides skewers, Jack Ma allegedly ordered stir-fried Hunan prawns and spicy clams.

As Ma’s visit to Zhengzhou and the restaurant has gone viral, some social media users write that they have also visited the restaurant immediately after, sharing photos and their receipts as proof.

Weibo user Jia Chengjun (@贾成军) from Henan shared photos of people lining up to get a table at the popular restaurant.

According to various reports on Weibo, the restaurant’s owner initially offered Jack Ma the dinner for free, but the billionaire refused and paid anyway. His payment method will not come as a surprise; he paid with Alibaba’s online payment platform Alipay.

“Why would you offer him a free meal anyway?” some netizens wondered: “He surely has more money than you!”

Curious to try the same food as Ma? Zheng Xi Wang is located at the intersection of Fuyuan Street and Yingxie Street in Zhengzhou (福元路与英协路交叉口向西160米路北(银基王朝南门)).

By Manya Koetse

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. Please note that your comment below will need to be manually approved if you’re a first-time poster here.

©2019 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com

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