Latest News:  
Beijing   Cloudy/Overcast    24 / 15   City Forecast

Home>>Opinion

Legal changes clarify existing law, reduce abuse

(Global Times)

08:41, September 05, 2011

The draft amendment to China's Criminal Procedure Law is under public review. As a major issue in China's legal reform, the change naturally drew attention from the public and China observers.

Under the context that official abuse of power, especially from law enforcement departments, has caused rising public dissatisfaction, it is the aim of the amendment to deal with such abuse.

One article of the amendment is interpreted as both progress and regression in China's legal system, depending on how you look at the issue.

The amendment stipulates "under special conditions, suspects can be held under surveillance without their families being notified within 24 hours." The special conditions include: notification being impossible, crimes concerning national security, severe law violation involving terrorism activity and if notification may hinder an investigation.

These special conditions have triggered outcry that it leaves room for secret detention, and has caused concern in media outlets, such as the New York Times, that "more Chinese dissidents appear to disappear."

But if one reads it from another perspective, the article has actually been written into the Criminal Procedure Law for 32-years, and the amendment is trying to clarify the special conditions and limit the circumstances of detention without proper notification of the family.

Law articles can't be black and white. There are cases that have to be decided differently. For example, the detention of a corrupt official may conform to the special conditions of withholding information in order to prevent the fleeing of others involved. Conspirators may be kept from communicating when nabbing a terrorist network.

There are worries of overuse or improper use of these special conditions. These are legitimate concerns. But the way to prevent misuse is through further improvement and clarification, not by completely denying it. With the legal consciousness of the public on the rise, plus scorching media scrutiny, law enforcement procedures are under mounting pressures that force police to reduce abuses of power.

China's legal system has much to improve, but the country is also not under the dark days of the Middle Ages. Law is meant to protect the majority of people, not only a few who speak loudly.

Email|Print|Comments(Editor:张茜)

Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name

  

Selections for you


  1. A Mid-Autumn reunion in prison

  2. Scene of Sino-Russian border river emergency drill

  3. Egrets fight for food in Xinkai River estuary in Qinhuangdao

  4. Fine Art Asia 2011 to be held in HK

Most Popular

Opinions

  1. Springtime for Libya?
  2. China firmly opposes US sales of F-16s to Taiwan
  3. Mastering the art of public speaking
  4. Arms traders fumbled contact with Gaddafi
  5. More effort needed to "go global"
  6. Cross-border RMB settlement developing rapidly
  7. Chinese FDI wrongly seen as harbinger of doom
  8. The unlearnt lessons of 9/11 today
  9. Opinion: China's economy has landed, safely
  10. Success in Libya cannot pull Europe out of crisis

What's happening in China

Ex-leader's new book already a hot seller

  1. Huaxi Village completes controversial skyscraper
  2. New insurance law covers foreign employees
  3. Volunteers help Tibetan antelope hit the road
  4. All 12 trapped miners confirmed dead
  5. School stole teachers' identities

PD Online Data

  1. Water-Splashing Festival of Dai
  2. The Uyghur Muqam of Xinjiang
  3. Traditional Folk Long Song
  4. The Guqin and its Music
  5. Grand Songs of Dong