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China Continues Crackdown on Horror Stories
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China is continuing its crackdown on illegal horror publications, particularly Death Note stories, according to the national office for cleaning up pornography and fighting illegal publications Wednesday.

China has confiscated 5,912 Death Note books, 1,364 horror CDs and DVDs and 11,930 other illegal horror books across the country, statistics from the office showed.

China has been targeting on "illegal terrifying publications" such as Death Note since last April.

Death Note stories, a type of horror tale that the government has ordered off the shelves, have been read by many primary school students, according to the circular issued by the national office for cleaning up pornography and fighting illegal publications.

Japanese Death Note cartoons describe a hero accidentally coming into possession of a notebook left by a certain Azrael. The hero discovers that if he writes down the name of a person, the person is certain to die. The cartoons depict various scary ways of dying.

Death Note stories contain elements of mystery, death and revenge, and are harmful to children's psychological development," the office said.

Some students even imitate the hero by writing down the names of people they hate on a so-called death notebook to give vent to their feelings, sources with the office said.

A Beijing official said the Beijing municipal government has received numerous complaints from parents and educators who say students are spending too much time on reading the horror stories and not enough time on studying.

China will continue to crackdown on horror fiction on the internet.  
(Xinhua News Agency June 14, 2007)

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