1984: Ai Weiwei Canceled by Banks, Your Accounts to be Closed for Dissent and Infractions
grarpamp at gmail.com
Wed Sep 8 21:56:30 PDT 2021
Make NO mistake about it, any online Dissent or Realworld Infractions,
whether adjudicated or not, will soon result in closure of your bank
Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei revealed that Credit Suisse had
decided to close his foundation's bank account because of his
"criminal record" in China. Despite the fact that the dissident has
never been convicted of a crime.
Credit Suisse Closes Account Of Chinese Dissident Ai Weiwei As Western
Banks Fear Angering Beijing
Credit Suisse has endured an onslaught of embarrassing headlines
already this year following the collapse of Greensill and the blowup
of Archegos, incidents that cost the bank billions of francs and
damaged its reputation.
But while this latest controversy probably won't impact the bank's
bottom line, it does offer a glimpse of the conflicts and difficult
decisions certain banks must make if they decide to grow their
business in China. In a blog post published this week, Chinese
dissident artist Ai Weiwei revealed that Credit Suisse had decided to
close his foundation's bank account because of his "criminal record"
in China. Despite the fact that the dissident has never been convicted
of a crime.
Ai is one of China's most well-known artists, who received acclaim for
designing Beijing's bird nest stadium from the 2008 Olympics, but
eventually fell out of favor and fled the country because of his
dissident politics. Ai now lives in Portugal, where he apparently
wrote an opinion piece for Artnet decrying Credit Suisse's decision to
close his organization's account, which was almost certainly made
after being pressured by Beijing.
Though, oddly, news of the decision was reported by the SCMP, which is
owned by Alibaba founder Jack Ma is known for a subtle pro-CCP bias.
Credit Suisse declined to comment to SCMP for its story. "Credit
Suisse initially informed me that they had a new policy to terminate
all bank accounts which are related to people with criminal records,"
Ai said. The bank asked that the funds be moved by September.
Ai was never formally charged with a crime, but he was detained for 81
days in 2011, an experience that featured into his later artwork.
Ai said he was first contacted by the bank's managers in June and
asked about an interview he had done with a Swiss newspaper several
days before, in which he criticized Swiss people for voting in favor
of tighter "anti-immigrant policies". Ai said this interview was cited
as a reason for the closure. He added that some funds still remain in
the account, but that they must be moved soon and that the account was
But that was most likely a ruse. As global megabanks jockey for favor
with the CCP, they're being extremely careful not to do anything that
might lead to them being shut out of the extremely lucrative private
wealth business in China. CS and others have already conducted reviews
of all their clients in Hong Kong, looking for ties to the
pro-democracy movement in the city. Any clients with ties were
immediately let go.
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