Art News

China dissident Ai Weiwei launches scathing attack on the Chinese government

BEIJING (REUTERS).- Dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has launched his first scathing attack on the Chinese government since his release from secretive detention in late June, accusing officials of denying citizens their basic rights. In a strongly worded commentary published late on Sunday on the website of Newsweek magazine, Ai — whose detention sparked an international outcry — said the capital Beijing was “a city of violence.” He criticized the government for rampant corruption, the judicial system and its policy on migrant workers — issues that have inflamed social tensions in China. Ai’s commentary signals his growing impatience with the strict terms of his release from custody in late June after 81 days. It also presents Beijing with a direct challenge on how to handle the country’s most famous social critic. “Every year millions come to Beijing to build its bridges, roads, and houses…. They a