17 January 2022,   14:54
Chinese citizen journalist jailed for 4 years for Wuhan virus reports

A Chinese court handed a four-year jail term on Monday (Dec 28) to a citizen-journalist who reported from the central city of Wuhan at the peak of last year’s coronavirus outbreak, on grounds of “picking quarrels and provoking trouble”, her lawyer said.

Zhang Zhan, 37, the first such person known to have been tried, was among a handful of people whose firsthand accounts from crowded hospitals and empty streets painted a more dire picture of the pandemic epicenter than the official narrative.

“I don’t understand. All she did was say a few true words, and for that she got four years”, - said Shao Wenxia, Zhang’s mother, who attended the trial with her husband.

Zhang’s lawyer Ren Quanniu told Reuters: “We will probably appeal”, - adding that the trial at a court in Pudong, a district of the business hub of Shanghai, ended at 12:30pm.