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Mesut Özil has fallen foul of an ever-more belligerent China

The Communist Party is more hostile to criticism than ever

By George Magnus  

Mesut Ozil of Arsenal during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture date: 15th December 2019. Picture credit should read: David Klein/Sportimage via PA Images

China’s state broadcaster banned the showing of Arsenal’s home game against Manchester City over the weekend following comments made by Mesut Özil in support of the Uyghur people in the western Chinese province of Xinjiang. Some have charged that what’s going on there is tantamount to cultural genocide (see, for example, here). Arsenal fans in China were spared the drubbing of their team by Manchester City, but the ban speaks to a big problem that China has: its thin skin and capacity for handling…

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