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Emily Feng

Emily Feng is NPR's Beijing correspondent.

Feng joined NPR in 2019. She roves around China, through its big cities and small villages, reporting on social trends as well as economic and political news coming out of Beijing. Feng contributes to NPR's newsmagazines, newscasts, podcasts, and digital platforms.

Previously, Feng served as a foreign correspondent for the Financial Times. Based in Beijing, she covered a broad range of topics, including human rights and technology. She also began extensively reporting on the region of Xinjiang during this period, becoming the first foreign reporter to uncover that China was separating Uyghur children from their parents and sending them to state-run orphanages, and discovering that China was introducing forced labor in Xinjiang's detention camps.

Feng's reporting has also let her nerd out over semiconductors and drones, travel to environmental wastelands, and write about girl bands and art. She's filed stories from the bottom of a coal mine; the top of a mosque in Qinghai; and from inside a cave Chairman Mao once lived in.

Her human rights coverage has been shortlisted by the British Journalism Awards in 2018, recognized by the Amnesty Media Awards in February 2019 and won a Human Rights Press merit that May. Her radio coverage of the coronavirus epidemic in China earned her another Human Rights Press Award, was recognized by the National Headliners Award, and won a Gracie Award. She was also named a Livingston Award finalist in 2021.

Feng graduated cum laude from Duke University with a dual B.A. degree from Duke's Sanford School in Asian and Middle Eastern studies and in public policy.

The novel coronavirus outbreak almost certainly did not start in a Chinese lab but its path from animals to humans needs further investigation, a World Health Organization team said Tuesday after wrapping up a visit to China.

The comments came as scientists from the WHO and Chinese health bodies jointly presented preliminary findings after two weeks of investigating in Wuhan, the Chinese city that first detected the virus in late 2019.

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SACHA PFEIFFER, HOST:

For thousands of people, the late Dr. Li Wenliang feels very much alive. They flock to his social media page on Weibo each day to write to him:

"Hey Dr. Li, I just got a second COVID shot. It hurt a little. I miss you."

"Dr. Li, I pet a cute orange cat today! I'm happy!"

"When do you think the pandemic would be over? I long for the days without a mask."

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MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

China has approved one domestic coronavirus vaccine for commercial use. Four more are in late stage human trials, and a nationwide vaccination campaign is already underway.

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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

A year ago, on January 23, 2020, China imposed an absolute lockdown in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

Eleven million people are under lockdown in Hebei province after a new cluster of coronavirus infections.

Since Jan. 2, Hebei has reported more than 600 new positive cases, 544 of which were from the capital city of Shijiazhuang. To identify all potential patients, health officials have completed one round of mass testing of all the city's residents, and a second one is being carried out this week.

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NOEL KING, HOST:

Updated 4:42 a.m.

In a predawn raid, Hong Kong police arrested more than 50 opposition lawmakers and activists for participating in an independent primary, the most sweeping use yet of a national security law Beijing imposed in the region last year.

Hong Kong's beleaguered opposition is still trying to ascertain who has been arrested. The region's police force declined to release a list of those detained Wednesday.

Beijing says it inoculated more than 73,000 people in the first two days after China's first domestic COVID-19 vaccine was approved for commercial use.

China's capital has set up 220 vaccination centers around the city to dole out the two-step vaccine. The elderly and front-line medical workers will receive the first doses.

A Chinese billionaire who's a media business partner of Steve Bannon is waging campaigns of disinformation and harassment targeting diaspora democracy activists and even Joe Biden's son.

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SACHA PFEIFFER, HOST:

Cizhong Church in China's southwestern Yunnan province is bathed in a golden light on Christmas Eve.

The faithful are streaming into the church in full Tibetan regalia, with the women splitting off to sit on the left in their bright pink headscarves and silk brocades, and the men to the right in cowboy hats and shearlings. Neighbors wave at each other. Heavily swaddled children run up and down the church aisle.

A trio of young Hong Kong opposition activists have been sentenced after pleading guilty to organizing a demonstration last year as part of a larger protest against Hong Kong's receding autonomy.

Their sentencing on Wednesday is the latest blow to the region's opposition movement, which seeks to preserve Hong Kong's limited autonomy from Beijing.

Zhang was the picture of despair the first time I met him.

He had accidentally delivered a package to a neighbor of mine who took it and would not give it back. Now, trembling, he wanted to personally reimburse me for the lost item.

I refused to take his money, but for two days, he called me nonstop to apologize. At the time, I did not understand why he was so repentant. Then I found out how closely monitored — and severely punished — delivery workers like him are.

This spring, 14 men were brought into police offices, where, one by one, they were subjected to weeks of questioning about their online correspondence and political views.

Their offense? Buying Islamic books.

The men were detained in Yiwu, China, an international commercial hub on the country's wealthy east coast and home to a growing community of Muslims. The detentions are emblematic of increasingly harsh restrictions targeting spiritual and educational life for Muslims in China.

He is a slight, bespectacled man. Colleagues at the industrial materials company where he works describe him as a humorous but diligent employee, known for driving his white Jeep around town in northwestern China's Ningxia region to meet potential clients.

Unbeknownst to them, he goes by Benjamin Chen online, where he has a whole other business: He is a popular seller of the chemicals used to make the potent synthetic opioid fentanyl. NPR has identified him but is not using his real name because of the illegal activity in which he's involved.

One early November morning, a Peking duck cook, several construction workers and a software engineer patiently lined up outside a Beijing vaccine facility, awaiting their turn to be injected with a coronavirus vaccine still awaiting regulatory approval.

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Hong Kong's opposition lawmakers are resigning en masse to protest the expulsion of four fellow pro-democracy legislators that Beijing deems secessionist.

The move comes after China's National People's Congress Standing Committee passed a resolution giving Hong Kong authorities the power to bypass local courts and summarily remove politicians seen as a threat to security. Four Hong Kong lawmakers who have supported the territory's pro-democracy movement — and were thus barred from running for reelection — were immediately unseated, as stipulated in the resolution.

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NOEL KING, HOST:

What was supposed to be the world's largest initial public stock offering has been halted at the last minute. The Chinese financial company, Ant Group, was set to go public on Thursday. The IPO was expected raise an estimated $37 billion and boost Ant's market value to in excess of $300 billion.

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