A popular Chinese blogger was sentenced to eight months in prison after being seized earlier this year for his comments about military casualties in the Galwan valley clash with India.
According to Chinese daily Global Times, Qiu Ziming, an internet superstar with over 2.5 million followers, was sentenced to eight months in prison on Monday for “defaming martyrs," the first such instance in China since the Criminal Law was amended.
A Nanjing court in East China’s Jiangsu Province also ordered the blogger, known online as “Labixiaoqiu," to publicly apologise through major domestic portals and the national media within 10 days.
Qiu had “truthfully confessed to his crime," entered a guilty plea, and stated in court that he would never commit the act again, and therefore was given a reduced term, according to the court.
The Global Times had reported that Qiu offered an open apology for his remarks during a broadcast on China’s national broadcaster CCTV on March 1.
The remarks came after China revealed for the first time that four of its soldiers were killed and one was critically injured in the Himalayan conflict.
Qiu, a former reporter for the weekly Economic Observer, had published two posts claiming that a commander had survived the confrontations because he was the highest-ranking officer there. He also stated that there may have been more Chinese soldiers killed in the clashes than the government had revealed.