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A car displaying a poster of jailed Chinese citizen journalist Zhang Zhan follows a caravan funeral procession in Pasadena, Los Angeles, honoring COVID-19 victims in November. Photo: Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A court in Shanghai sentenced a citizen journalist to four years in prison Monday after finding her guilty of "picking quarrels and provoking trouble" by reporting on China's early coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, per rights groups.

Why it matters: Zhang Zhan's conviction marks the first known sentence of someone "who chronicled authorities' early struggle to manage the outbreak," Bloomberg notes.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.
  • Zhang is among several independent reporters "detained or disappeared" in a crackdown by Chinese authorities keen to portray the government's pandemic response as "effective and timely," per CNN.
  • There's no free press in China.

Driving the news: The 37-year-old former lawyer came to the attention of authorities in February, after her reports were widely shared on social media, documenting how officials "didn't give people enough information" and "violated human rights," SBS reports.

  • Zhang has been detained since last May, AFP notes.

Of note: Her sentencing comes as a World Health Organization-led international mission prepares to visit China next month to investigate COVID-19's origins.

Go deeper: The early days of China's coronavirus outbreak and cover-up

Editor's note: This article has been updated with more details on Zhang's arrest and further context.

Go deeper

8 hours ago - Health

Bill and Melinda Gates warn of "immunity inequality"

Bill and Melinda Gates at a Goalkeepers event in 2018. Photo: Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images

Bill and Melinda Gates warned in their annual letter Wednesday that the lasting legacy of the coronavirus pandemic could be "immunity inequality" — a wide and deadly gap between wealthy people, with easy access to coronavirus vaccines, and everyone else.

Why it matters: As long as there are large swaths of the world that can't get vaccinated, they warned, it will be impossible to get the pandemic under control.

AAPI leaders praise order on discrimination but say Biden needs to do more to "prioritize" community

President Biden on the left. Rep. Judy Chu on the right. Photos: Doug Mills-Pool (left) and Paul Morigi/WireImage for The Recording Academy (right) via Getty

Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) lawmakers, community organizers and advocacy groups commended President Biden's Tuesday order directing an examination of anti-Asian bias and discrimination, but pushed the administration to commit to stronger action.

Why it matters: Anti-Asian hate crimes have surged since the pandemic began, reaching more than 2,500 in August according to Stop AAPI Hate, an initiative that tracks anti-AAPI racism.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
8 hours ago - Economy & Business

Telework's tax mess

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

As teleworkers flit from city to city, they're creating a huge tax mess.

Why it matters: Our tax laws aren't built for telecommuting, and this new way of working could have dire implications for city and state budgets.

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