Six ways China's new rulers could make life better

The dissident artist Ai Weiwei, who fell foul of the government of Hu Jintao and spent months in detention, tells Clifford Coonan his wish list for the incoming administration
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The Independent Online

1. Allow Chinese citizens to access domestic internet sites

They cannot even allow people to have their opinions on TV or in the newspapers. They have already blocked lots of international sites with the Great Firewall of China, but leave the domestic sites alone. Please, as a Chinese citizen, allow me to use the internet. Show the courage of a big nation.

2. Let artists express themselves

Accept different forms and colours from artists and poets and writers and musicians. It's their job to offer a colourful landscape.

3. Introduce an independent justice system

Having an independent justice system lets everybody respect the law. And also have open trials for any crime. We have to have moral trust.

4. Set out a time schedule for high officials to reveal their assets

Say one or two years from now, for senior officials to reveal their property. Every five or 10 years you have a big meeting, and you say you will fight corruption. You have to give a schedule, so that people will believe that what you are saying is true.

5. Treat China's ethnic minorities with fairness

Give them some chance to have their own dignity. Their traditions. Their beliefs.

6. Let the government learn to tolerate people with different opinions

Set up some kind of communication; show you can tolerate different opinions. Not to see those who have different opinions as attacking the state power. Not to make different-thinking people disappear or put them in jail, or fabricate charges against them.