Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ENCORE!

Music show: Mahalia, Ariana Grande & Willie Nelson

Read more

FOCUS

Tramadol: Cameroon’s low-budget opioid crisis

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

EU citizens’ consultations: Macron’s efforts to renew Europe

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Strengthening ties Down Under: The man charged with promoting Australia in France

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Jagland: ‘Would be disastrous if Russia pulls out of Council of Europe’

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Much ado about nothing? Actress Natalie Portman's boycott of 'Jewish Nobel awards' sparks backlash

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Emmanuel Macron and Donald Trump: Strategic BFFs?

Read more

IN THE PRESS

'Badass': Accolades pour in for Southwest pilot who landed plane after engine failure

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Poverty remains a challenge for Paraguay as new president is elected

Read more

China sperm bank demands loyalty to Communist Party

© AFP/File | Potential sperm donors at The Third Hospital of Peking University must have 'sound ideological qualities'

BEIJING (AFP) - 

Beijing's only sperm bank has set loyalty to the Communist Party as a prerequisite for donors, in a sign that China's increasing emphasis on ideological training is being extended to the womb.

The bizarre requirement was part of a sperm donation drive launched Wednesday by Peking University Third Hospital ?- a public hospital affiliated to an elite university considered to be China's Harvard.

As well as being free of genetic or infectious diseases, potential donors must have "sound ideological qualities", according to a notice posted on the hospital's official account on popular messaging app WeChat.

Men between the ages of 20 to 45 who wish to donate semen must "love the socialist motherland, support the leadership of the Communist Party, be loyal to the party's cause and be decent, law-abiding citizens, free of political problems", it said.

Those who successfully donate after undergoing two rounds of medical checks -- to assess the quality of their semen and general fitness -- will be paid 5,500 yuan ($900), the statement said.

There were no details on how the hospital would verify whether donors satisfied the political requirements.

AFP's calls to the hospital to ask if these requirements were part of a larger government policy went unanswered.

China has only 23 sperm banks nationwide, according to the country's National Health Commission, and many are plagued by a severe shortage of donors.

Requirements for donors at other major collection centres, including those in Shanghai and Guangzhou, do not include loyalty to the party.

The controversial campaign, which runs until late May, has inspired several tongue-in-cheek comments by Chinese internet users.

"Love for the party starts with a sperm," wrote one social media commentator on WeChat.

"Maybe they haven't learned biology. Acquired traits can't be passed down," wrote another on microblogging service Weibo.

© 2018 AFP