Han Song, a Chinese science fiction writer and external director of the official Xinhua News Agency, expressed his concern about the recent hot issue of “mother of eight children” on his Weibo account in the last two days.

He posted on Weibo on February 6th, saying he is not concerned about “Shuimen Bridge of Changjin Lake” or “Bing Dwen Dwen”—the mascot of the Beijing Winter Olympics, but about a woman who was abducted and trafficked.

Official media reported that a criminal group bought women from their families and held them captive in a pigsty in northern China, where they were sold as wives to poor men.

According to the state-run news agency Xinhua, the gang in Shandong province sold ten women over the past two years, with customers paying up to 100,000 yuan (about $15,750) for each “wife.”

The women were bought from their families in Guangdong province and the Guangxi region of southern China for 3000 yuan (about $470) to 5000 yuan (about $785) with a promise of marriage into a wealthy family.

As Taiwanese media LTN reported on February 6th, there is also a video of Cao Xiaoqing from Sichuan abducted and trafficked. She was locked up in a cellar in Inner Mongolia for 15 years, eating, drinking, and doing everything in the same iron pot. Her living environment was similar to that of a pigsty. She was sold four times before being purchased as a “co-wife” for 6,000 yuan (about $940) by a couple of brothers named Liu. She later gave birth to two children, and when she was rescued, she was insane.

Han Song said a director of the Women’s Federation in Guizhou Province came to rescue an abducted woman kidnapped by several locals while walking on the street. The director of the Women’s Federation falsely claimed that he was also a trafficker of human beings and purchased the woman to rescue her, then took the opportunity to escape.

Chang Ping, a senior Chinese media person, also wrote a book on the Chinese website of Deutsche Welle, pointing out that in 1999, he and his colleagues from Southern Weekly went to Xinyi Mountains in Guangdong to report on the phenomenon of trafficking in women. In those remote mountain village families, the proportion of “buying a daughter-in-law” is as high as 50 or more. He said that in China, it is often not the women traffickers and related buyers who are punished but the exposers of the crime.

Chang Ping said on Weibo that a lecture by law professor Luo Xiang was circulated on the Internet, in which Luo Xiang said, “according to Chinese law, illegally buying a parrot carries a maximum sentence of five years; illegally buying one or a dozen (meaning many) women is punishable by a maximum sentence. Three years is equivalent to the maximum penalty for illegally buying twenty toads. Therefore, Chinese women are not worth as much as parrots, but only as much as toads.”

The offending post by Han Song has now been removed. However, However, Han Song has remained silent about the incident.

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