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China clamps down on Net cafes – again

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China has launched another crack down on Internet cafes this time banning children under the age of 16 from using them.

The new regulations - due to come into force next month - were introduced following a fire at a Beijing Internet café in which 24 people died and 13 were injured.

According to the Xinhua News Agency, the new regulations mean that as well as banning minors, it would be illegal to set up a cyber cafe within a stone's throw of a school.

It would also be illegal to operate a cyber cafe before 8.00am in the morning and after midnight.

Oh, and Net users must also not use cyber cafes to "conduct illegal activities" such as peeking at porno and other subversive material.

Those found to be in breach of the new law could face a fine of up to $1,800 and have their licences revoked.

A year ago the Chinese Government shut down 17,488 Internet cafes because they failed to block sites considered subversive or pornographic. ®

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