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25 January 2010, 14:31

China denies involvement in attacks on Google

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Google Logo The Chinese government has strenuously denied any involvement in the recent hacking attacks on US internet company Google. A spokesman for the ministry of industry and information technology today (Monday) told the news agency Xinhua that, any "accusation that the Chinese government participated in cyber attacks, either in an explicit or indirect way, is groundless and aims to denigrate China." He told the agency that China is "the biggest victim" of hacking attacks.

The spokesman was responding to accusations by Google that the December attacks on the company originated in China. The internet giant has reacted by calling into question its continued involvement in China. Google has also announced that it intends to stop censoring its search results in China, as required by the Chinese government. The spokesman defended this censorship by stating that internet regulation in China, "is proved to be suitable for China's national conditions and in line with common practices in most countries as well."

In further reports on Xinhua, the ministry spokesman is quoted as saying that, "Online information which incites subversion of state power, violence and terrorism or includes pornographic contents is explicitly prohibited," and that China has the right to ban such "illegal and harmful online content". "Different countries have different conditions and realities, thus they are regulating the Internet in different ways."

China's internet blocks or filters politically sensitive content such as information on human rights infringements or the bloody suppression of the pro-democracy movement in 1989. Human rights activists are frequently sentenced to lengthy prison sentences for "incitement to subversion of state power" for using the internet to distribute criticism of the one-party dictatorship in China and demands for democracy.

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