China: January 31, 2003


Alarmed at the extent of police corruption and misbehavior, the government has issued strict new regulations to try and control public misbehavior. It's now illegal for police to drive, or carry their guns, while drunk, gamble and otherwise misbehave while in uniform. For a rapidly developing nation, China doesn't have a lot of cops (about 11 per 10,000 population, while most developed nations have between 10 and 35), but too many policemen see corrupt behavior as their right. Victims of the extortion and general abuse blame the government, and the ruling Communist Party. All earlier efforts to reform police behavior have failed. Part of this is due to the need for the Communists to use the police to do their dirty work when it comes to rooting out dissidents and reformers.




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