Women’s rights NGO forced to close for being a ‘suspected illegal social organization’ | Society News | SupChina

Women’s rights NGO forced to close for being a ‘suspected illegal social organization’

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Last month, the Guangzhou Gender and Sexuality Education Center (GSEC), a leading non-profit whose mission is to empower women and promote gender equality, announced its discontinuation of services. In the discouraging post about its sudden closure, the center didn’t disclose the cause of the shutdown, leaving room for speculation that it’s simply their advocacy of women’s rights that drew ire from the government.

It has now been confirmed that the shutdown was ordered by the civil affairs bureau in Guangzhou, who said in a statement (in Chinese) on January 8 that it shuttered GSEC because the center was listed as a “suspected illegal social organization.” The announcement notes that the closure was part of the local government’s special force to crack down on “illegal social organizations,” but it doesn’t specify what illegal activities the center engaged in.

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Jiayun Feng

Jiayun was born in Shanghai, where she spent her first 20 years and earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism at Fudan University. Interested in writing for a global audience, she attended the NYU Graduate School of Journalism for its Global & Joint Program Studies, which allowed her to pursue a journalism career along with her interest in international relations. She has previously interned for Sixth Tone and Shanghai Daily.