Chinese Internet celebrity detained for national anthem performance

Oct. 15 (UPI) — China detained a young Internet celebrity after she sang the national anthem on an online platform in a manner deemed “offensive” to the state.

Chinese state media reported Monday 20-year-old Yang Kaili was sentenced to prison for five days after “mocking” the national anthem in her performance.

Her actions are being punished under a relatively new National Anthem Law that began to be enforced in 2017, the same year Chinese President Xi Jinping began to rule without term limits.

Yang is a popular personality in the Chinese live-stream world. Live streaming in China is estimated to be worth about $ 5 billion in 2016, the BBC reported Monday.

The young star’s troubles began after Oct. 7, when she aired footage of herself singing the anthem while swinging her arm and wearing a headband with animal ears.

Yang reportedly sang the first line of the anthem, “Arise, you who refuse to be slaves!” in a way that ridiculed the verse while introducing an online music festival on the Chinese platform Huya.

Her actions violate the National Anthem Law, the Shanghai Police Department said.

The online celebrity, who boasts 44 million followers, said she “sincerely apologizes” for not singing the anthem in an appropriate manner.

“I apologize to the country, I did not mean to hurt the feelings of everyone,” Yang said.

Her statement did not affect a government decision to place her in detention.

Huya has since deleted all of Yang’s videos and her account was suspended, according to multiple reports.

China’s National Anthem Law stipulates people who denigrate the anthem can face up to 15 days of detention, or in severe cases up to three years of imprisonment.

China also recently censored bad economic news amid a trade dispute with the United States.

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