Police stand guard outside China's Liaison Office in Hong Kong, China January 6, 2016. REUTERS/Bobby Yip
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China has formally arrested four labor activists who have helped workers fight for their rights, lawyers for two of them said Sunday, as the government steps up a crackdown on activists pressing for change within the system.Two other activists, Meng Han and Zhu Xiaomei, have also been arrested on the same charge, said Yan Xin, Meng's lawyer, and Cheng. He Xiaobo was arrested on a charge of embezzlement, according to New York-based rights group China Labor Watch. Last month, police in Guangzhou detained seven labor activists, sparking criticism from rights groups.The number of strikes in China surged to a record 2,774 last year, or double the figure for 2014, Hong Kong-based advocacy group China Labor Bulletin said last week.
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