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Beijing Marathon Must-Have: Face Masks

Runners brave 'hazardous' smog levels

(Newser) - Tens of thousands of people took part in the 34th Beijing International Marathon yesterday, despite warnings that the city's notorious air pollution had reached "hazardous" levels and it would be wise to avoid exertion. Many runners were spotted wearing face masks or even gas masks, and organizers provided...

Chinese Cops Bust Poet Over Umbrella

Item confiscated from Wang Zang's home amid Hong Kong protests

(Newser) - A Chinese poet could reportedly face three years in prison, and it's all because of an umbrella. Wang Zang posted a picture of himself online holding an umbrella—and, it should be noted, sporting a one-fingered salute—after said rain shields, also used to block tear gas, became a...

Nixon Worried Pandas Didn't Know How to Have Sex

'The only way they learn is to watch other pandas mate'

(Newser) - It's more than a little disturbing that America's least sexy president spent a nanosecond thinking about panda sex—but a recorded conversation reveals none other than Richard Nixon telling Washington Star foreign editor Crosby Noyes that, "They don't know how to mate." The recording comes...

Family Attempts Suicide in Housing Dispute

Chinese protesters: The government destroyed our home

(Newser) - Twelve people in China have highlighted their grievances by swallowing pesticide in public and falling to the ground, frothing at the mouth, the Telegraph reports. In one incident, a group of seven people from Jiangsu province (all from the same family, says the Daily Mail ) went outside a newspaper...

2022 Olympics Could Be in Kazakhstan

Almaty, Beijing, and Oslo are the only cities interested

(Newser) - Left with little choice after the withdrawal of three contenders, the International Olympic Committee retained the three remaining cities today in the troubled race for the 2022 Winter Games. Almaty, Kazakhstan; Beijing, and Oslo made the list of finalists, as had been expected. The cities must submit their detailed bid...

Beijing Tense on Massacre's 25th Anniversary

LinkedIn accidentally censors Tiananmen content

(Newser) - A quarter-century after pro-democracy protesters were massacred in the heart of Beijing, Chinese authorities are doing their best to make sure nobody marks the anniversary. Security in the city is very tight, scores of police and paramilitary troops are patrolling Tiananmen Square, and foreign reporters have been ordered not to...

Host 2022 Olympics? Cities Say No Thanks

Costs make gig increasingly unappealing

(Newser) - The race is on for the 2022 Winter Olympics—the race to get out of hosting, that is. Four cities that were considering hosting, including two finalists for the job, have dropped out of the running. Four finalists remain, but only two of those bids look robust. Cities just don'...

China Has Detailed Plans in Case of N. Korea Collapse

Contingency plans leaked to Japanese media

(Newser) - China apparently doesn't have a whole lot of faith in Kim Jong Un's leadership abilities: Beijing has documented contingency plans in the event of a North Korean regime collapse, and they were recently leaked to Japanese media, the Telegraph reports. Among the plans:
  • Detain important North Korean military

Families Hold Airline Workers Hostage Over Flight 370

Angry relatives stage sit-in protest at Malaysian embassy in Beijing

(Newser) - A briefing about Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 became a hostage crisis yesterday when Chinese family members refused to let airline workers leave a Beijing hotel, NBC News reports. About 200 relatives of missing jet passengers took 10 workers hostage for nearly 11 hours at the Lido Hotel, expressing their "...

Forbidden City to Get More Forbidden

Beijing attraction to limit tourists for fear of damage

(Newser) - A week after Michelle Obama toured Beijing's Forbidden City , China has announced the former imperial palace won't open its doors to quite so many tourists, amid fears that the traffic is damaging the site, Reuters reports. How those numbers currently stack up: more than 14 million tourists each...

Beijing Declares War&mdash;on BBQs
 Beijing Declares War—on BBQs

Beijing Declares War—on BBQs

Grills blamed for city's pollution problem

(Newser) - Grilled lamb has become a scapegoat for Beijing's notorious air pollution, Reuters finds. Authorities say they have destroyed more than 500 open-air barbecues, which they claim seriously affects the city's air quality. State media showed photos of workers cutting apart the grills, many of which are operated by...

Was Tiananmen Crash a Suicide Attack?

Death toll hits 5; police eye Xinjiang region

(Newser) - The death toll following yesterday's SUV crash in Tiananmen Square has climbed to five, with two tourists—a Chinese man and a Filipina woman—dead along with the vehicle's occupants. "It looks like a premeditated suicide attack," says a Reuters source. If so, it would be...

SUV Plows Through Tiananmen Crowd

3 killed, 11 hurt in bizarre Beijing crash

(Newser) - Three people were killed and at least 11 injured this morning in a bizarre car crash in the most politically sensitive patch of China. Police say an SUV plowed through a crowd in Beijing's Tiananmen Square and caught fire, crashing almost directly in front of the huge portrait of...

'Choking Smog' Shuts Down Huge Chinese City

Pollution reading way beyond dangerous level

(Newser) - The northeastern Chinese city of Harbin, population 11 million, has virtually shut down today thanks to air pollution; the smog is so heavy in places that you can't see beyond about 30 feet. It's this bad: "We were all late for class today because we couldn't...

Man Must Tear Down Beijing's Wildest Illegal Structure

It sits atop 26-story building

(Newser) - Most people would be content to occupy the penthouse apartment atop a 26-story building in Beijing. Not, apparently, a man identified as Zhang Biqing. The South China Morning Post reports that the "eccentric resident"—a "medicine mogul" who owns a chain of acupuncture clinics—has spent the...

1 Hurt in Beijing Airport Bombing

Reason for attack not clear

(Newser) - A man in a wheelchair set off a homemade bomb in Terminal 3 of the Beijing International Airport yesterday evening, injuring himself but no one else, Chinese state media reported. Order was quickly restored and no flights were affected by the explosion, state-run China Central Television said on its microblog....

Angry Beijing Workers Seize American Boss

Local officials taking their side, he complains

(Newser) - "I feel like a trapped animal," an American factory boss besieged by workers at a medical supply plant in Beijing tells the AP . Chip Starnes says he has been held captive for four days by a hundred workers demanding severance packages like those given to colleagues in a...

Beijing Cops Hunting Down Golden Retrievers

Ban on 'large and vicious' dogs includes Labs, Dalmatians, and collies

(Newser) - Beijing police have recently started enforcing a prohibition on "large and vicious dogs." It's a ban that includes breeds such as golden retrievers, Labradors, and Dalmatians, and affects any dog taller than 13.7 inches—apparently the size at which authorities feel pooches are no longer appropriate...

Bird Flu Spreads to Beijing
 Bird Flu Spreads to Beijing 

Bird Flu Spreads to Beijing

It was expected to, says WHO chief; still no human-to-human transmissions

(Newser) - Beijing has reported its first case of the H7N9 bird flu , as two new cases in a neighboring province were confirmed today, marking the official spread of the virus from the country's east. But the development was anticipated, says the head of the WHO office in Beijing. "We'...

Xi Jinping Officially Named China's President

Became head of Communist Party, military in November

(Newser) - China's new leader Xi Jinping capped his rise yesterday by adding the largely ceremonial title of president, though he will need cautious maneuvering to consolidate his power and build support from a public that is increasingly clamoring for change. The elevation of Xi to the presidency by the rubber-stamp...

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