University of Minnesota student jailed in China over critical tweets, report says

Elias Hubbard
January 26, 2020

Documents noted that the student tweeted these pictures that disparaged a national leader and "created a negative social impact", while he was in the US.

The publication obtained court documents that suggested Luo was detained from his hometown of Wuhan for posting several tweets comparing Jinping with cartoon characters such as Winnie the pooh, and a villain from a show called Biker Mice from Mars. Canonically, Limburger is an evil alien from the planet Plutark in the guise of a Chicagoan industrialist.

A University of Minnesota student has been arrested and jailed for posting tweets mocking President Xi Jinping. As a result, images of the fictional bear were banned in China.

He also posted images with Chinese slogans over images of another cartoon villain with a similar likeness to the president.

After months of detention, Luo was sentenced in November 2019 to six months in prison for "provocation".

Daiging also retweeted post referencing Winnie the Pooh. The liberal arts major had returned home after the spring semester ended. His last tweet was posted in June. It's probably best to take that with a grain of salt, as Chinese authorities have always been accused of obtaining forced confessions in exchange for the prisoners' release.

A spokesman for the University told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that school officials did not have any information about the situation. On Wednesday night, U.S. Senator Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska) issued a statement calling the arrest "ruthless and paranoid totalitarianism", and demanding Luo's release. And it's worth noting that Twitter is blocked in China; some people manage to access the platform using VPNs.

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing didn't immediately respond to a faxed request for comment Thursday.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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